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.