Thursday, September 01, 2011

What I did during summer vacation, or, eBay, Part 1: Chanel

The kids are finally back in school! And LPC has just reminded me that I haven't blogged in a while. I've been doing a lot of shopping, and I've been up to my earlobes in fashion magazines, because on the way home from England, I loaded up on English magazines and read all the way across the Atlantic. But I have a lot of half-baked thoughts to work through before I can post anything coherent.

So I'm going to do what I did while blackbird was visiting this past weekend. I'm going to play show and tell. Today it's Chanel.

Chanel black distressed calf reissue bag with Mademoiselle clasp and bijoux chain hardware

Mr. Buxom bought me this bag for my birthday last year, and it initiated a wave of Chanel lust that has yet to subside. I've had a membership at The Purse Forum for years, but after I got my first Chanel, I really started paying attention. Then, I felt bold enough to start shopping for Chanel bags on eBay.

The next thing you know, my new-to-me-bags are holding a family reunion on my front porch.

Back row: Black caviar Medallion tote; Jumbo black lambskin flap
Middle row: Satin crocodile quilted evening back; caviar camera bag
Front: Pink caviar leather wallet-on-a-chain 

The thing about eBaying is that results can be mixed. Even if you know you like something and you're feeling triumphant because you've pwned the other bidders, sometimes you don't like the thing that much when it arrives. This is the case with the Medallion tote pictured above. It's nice; it's in great shape; the seller was extremely professional. But I haven't carried it yet.

But the rest? I love.

Chanel Jumbo black lambskin single-flap with gold hardware, circa 1994

This is one of my two favorites. It dates to about 1994. Way back in 1994, I would've thought the giant interlocking C's were terribly vulgar. Showy. Far, far too logo-y. Now I don't. I can't tell whether accessories have gotten so crazily logo-rific that this bag seems comparatively understated ... or that I've blunted my senses by carrying around a Coach grafitti-print tote that says POPPY all over it. Probably both.

Chanel black satin reissue double-flap evening bag with gold bijoux chain, circa 2006

This bag is my other favorite. It's black satin that is quilted in a crocodile pattern. Perfect for going out at night, when High WASPs still insist on carrying something other than a leather bag. Your bag can be satin or beaded or petit point or a Judith Leiber minaudière but not leather. Gold or silver leather is probably OK. And you might be able to get away with an exotic skin. Look, I don't make the rules, OK? I just promulgate them.

Pink caviar WOC with gold hardware, circa 2003

If you travel or need to have your hands free, these wallets-on-a-chain are incredibly useful. You can wear these messenger style, across your body, or double the chain and wear it over your shoulder. You can tuck the chains inside and carry it as a clutch, or (gasp!) actually use it as a wallet. It has six slots for credit cards, several different zipped pockets, and room for a passport. If you've ever had your purse stolen, or had to spend lots of time in a police station in a foreign country, or had to go to the American Embassy to get an emergency passport, you'll know how good it feels to have your cash, credit cards, ID and passport right next to your body, held in place with a metal chain, in case a thief thinks about snipping through your purse strings. Not that I'm psychologically scarred or anything.

This bag isn't long enough to wear cross-body, but it's that durable caviar leather with lots of little pockets--including an outside slip pocket for my phone. It's so cute! And retro! But where and when to wear it?

Chanel black caviar camera bag with gold hardware, circa 1995

"With jeans," said bird.

Of course.


  1. I have to admit, every time we go out of the country, I remember that time your purse got stolen on vacation, which always reminds me to switch purses to something I can carry cross-body.

    Cute bags!

  2. One word: Jealous

    That is quite an impressive collection.

  3. That is quite the double C collection!
    I have the 1994 one which I bought on a whim on Rodeo Drive while on honeymoon.
    But that's quite a long story ...

  4. Lovely and Luxe Poppy!
    Happy that you are back blogging.

  5. Wouldn't we just love to hear Paola's story?

    With jeans. I'll say it again.

  6. Look at your little family! But really, shouldn't they be breeding by now? :)

  7. I've got three WOCs; one black quilted calfskin, one silver metallic reissue and one navy metallic reissue.) They're the only useful small bags I've got. I can fit my iPhone, lipstick, cash, cards and usually a few other little doohickies.

  8. First, my WV is "sling". As in - Poppy likes to sling her Chanel bags across her body.

    Why don't you use the tote as a way to carry papers to volunteer meetings instead of thinking of it as a purse. Keep it packed with whatever you need for a particular board. Then you can just grab it on your way out the door.

  9. a delurking fan here. You are the sole reason I bought Chanel ballerina flats, and now this! You have doomed me. Someone keep me away from the shops.


Gentle Readers:

For the time being, I've turned off comment moderation. Please don't spam; it's not nice.

xxx, Poppy.