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I bought this bag to take on a recent city break to Brussels, having decided that my current handbag is a bit on the bulky side to be carrying round all day, and also I wanted a brown bag to match my newly bought brown boots! The bag cost me £9.99, and is available from New Look.
Although it is described on the New Look website as an across the body bag, I must admit I have only worn it as a normal handbag on the one shoulder. This is down to personal preference, but the length of the strap makes it suitable for either, and it is also adjustable so you can adjust it to be the right length for your height.
Being a tan brown colour, the bag looks like it is made from leather, although obviously the price would suggest otherwise. It is quite sturdy in structure, so when you put it down it doesn't slouch or lose its shape. I find this type of bag makes it slightly easier to find things inside it, without having to hold the bag in shape at the same time. Size wise, it is around 5 x 7 inches, and is also quite narrow so it doesn't accommodate anything bulky or awkwardly shaped. This is a bit annoying if you have a large purse like mine, as it's quite a tight squeeze.
The design of the bag is simple but very nice. It has a zip at the top of the opening to close it, and the front pocket has a flap which has a magnetic clasp to close it. Although the flap does cover the opening, I wouldn't be overly confident about putting anything too important in this part of the bag, just in case it fell out. The bag also has a discreet inner pocket for those items you don't want on display in your handbag. As it is satchel style, it looks smart enough to take to work, although the size would prevent most people from using it for this. I haven't had it long, but it has survived trips out in the rain without looking tatty, and the sturdy nature of this bag makes me think it will last a while.
Although this bag is lovely, I personally find it a little too small for daily use. I am the kind of person who carries round a lot of junk in my handbag, and I only clear it out occasionally. Every now and then I decide that down-sizing can only be a good thing, as in theory it should prevent me from hoarding things, but what actually happens is I don't have enough room in my bag and I end up taking another bag out with me. This one doesn't accommodate enough of my belongings, especially as I have quite a large purse which fills half the bag, and then it's a squeeze getting my mobile, keys and bits and bobs like tissues or lip balms. That said, if you travel a bit lighter, or are looking for something to use for something in particular like a holiday or interview, I think this would make a lovely handbag. For me, there's not quite enough room to house all my junk!