Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Organize Me: The Workhorse Bag

You know those people who treat their purses and bags like a black hole? Well, I am one of them. I always have a heavy purse filled with all sorts of things that I can justify having so it's hard for me to really lighten the load. But I take pride in keeping everything organized so that even when I'm lugging around 5-7lbs. of stuff on my shoulder for, I can find things easily and quickly. 

When I have a day filled with meetings and tasks to take care of, I pile everything into my trusty Everlane tote, aptly dubbed "the workhorse bag". Read on for the details of what I carry in my bag! 

From top to bottom: 
  • The Skinny Sleeve by Acme Made for my 13" MacBook Air | I have this in the color purple/pink, though the pink elastic strap is more like a bright lavender. I love this sleeve because it is so slim! It doesn't add unwanted bulk or weight which saves me room and shoulder pain. It is lightly padded with flexible, sturdy boards sewn in on both sides for extra protection. The elastic band makes sure my laptop won't slip out, and not having to deal with a zipper makes it easy for me to take out it out and put it away. 
  • Recycled Paper Pocket Book Size Note- Thin Type by Muji | If you're a fan of simple, minimal, and well designed products and you haven't discovered the magic of Muji yet, you're missing out. I always carry a pocket sized notebook on me in the case I need to jot something down or sketch something. I prefer to use good ol' paper and pen for things like that. This notebook has the smoothest paper and has a ribbon to help you keep your place. At the Muji store in LA (huzzah!) there's a stamping station where you can stamp the notebooks you buy with whatever you want with letters and images. I had this notebook in my purse when I visited the Muji store, and didn't need to buy another notebook so I just snuck this out and stamped my initials onto it. hehe
  • Small Soft Cover Notebook by poppin. | This adorable little notebook was a gift from my cousin Joanna. Thanks, girl! Now you might be wondering why I in the world would I need two little notebooks on me, and the reason is that one (Muji) is for personal notes and the other (poppin.) is for work. I don't want my notes mixing together and making it harder for me to find something at a later date. The poppin. notebook is great because it has an elastic that keeps the notebook closed, a ribbon to keep your place, and a small paper pocket in the back for things like business cards or receipts. The soft cover feels great to the touch, but is backed by a thin cardstock-like layer to keep it from being flimsy. At first I worried about the white getting dirty over time, but now I quite like how the edges have turned blue from being in my jeans pocket after long days on set. It ended up being personalized by accident!
  • Cosmetic bag by Forever 21 (similar) | I'm using this small cosmetic bag to hold my laptop charger, headphones, phone charger, and flash drive. This keeps all the cords neat, condensed, and out of the way. I like the neon yellow edge of the bag because it always catches my eye so I won't forget it while packing up.
  • Cell Phone Wallet Wristlet by Target (similar) | This wallet is great because it has enough slots for my basic cards (driver's license, credit card, debit card), a pocket for cash, and a central pocket for my phone. With the zipper I don't have to worry about anything falling out, which is great! I like that it is a wristlet, too because if I'm picking something up and need just my wallet, I can still be hands-free. 

From top to bottom, left to right: 
  • Sunglasses Case by Forever 21 | I have had this for years and it's held up pretty well. I particularly like the ball and socket closure because it is more secure than a drawstring. The bag has unexpectedly come in handy when I needed something to hold jewelry or tiny loose screws from my sunglasses without fearing that they would fall out.
  • Envelope Clutch in Painterly by ANN-YA | I absolutely adore this leather pouch! The paintbrush strokes caught my eye immediately when I first spotted this a year ago. Since then this clutch has served me wonderfully. The supple leather is flexible so it's perfect for holding all the receipts and PC from I have from work. The hole-punch closure is smooth and easy to use, but not loose enough to open on its own so I don't have to worry about its contents falling out.
  • Burt's Bees Original Lip Balm | My favorite is actually the Burt's Bees +Soothing Lip Balm as it is less oily than the original. I love the soothing feeling the menthol leaves on my lips.
  • Shea Butter Hand Cream by L'Occitane | While quite expensive, this hand cream is one of the few that has successfully moisturized my constantly dry hands without leaving them greasy and for long periods of time, even after washing my hands. This little tube fits pretty much anywhere, and lasted me about a year which was longer than I expected!
  • Gel-Ink Ballpoint Pen- 0.38mm by Muji | Yay, more Muji! I love the fine point for writing in my planner and squeezing notes into my notebook. Not to mention it makes my handwriting look neater than it actually is! 
  • Mon Cahier Planner from Poketo | I love this planner because it's large, spiral bound, and undated. The large size gives me enough space to jot down all the necessary info (ex. address, phone number) for appointments and meetings. Spiral bound was a requirement for me because being able to keep the planner at its original size when open saves so much space! 

  • Rechargeable Portable Power Bank | Being able to charge my phone has been such a life saver when I'm on set or traveling. I got mine in Taiwan two years ago, but since then they've exploded in popularity and affordability in the U.S.. Amazon has a great selection! 
  • Faux Ostrich Cosmetic Bag | Repurposed to hold my "you-never-know-what-will-happen" necessities like hand sanitizer, Tide-to-Go pen,  bobby pins, and more. 

The tote straps are 100% leather. The leather is supple, which is comfortable on my shoulder. The design is very simple, but sturdy as the stitching barely shows signs of wear. 

Just based off of everything I carry in it I know the thick canvas can truly withstand a lot. The interior is unlined, but I prefer that for this tote and its usage. A generously sized pocket inside is big enough to hold my pens, phone, and keys. 

My tote closes with a snap, which I don't particularly like, but Everlane just replaced all their old totes with new ones made with twill and they all have zippers. I don't need another tote as this one is holding up just fine for me, but you can bet I'll still be looking at the twill tote in navy every now and then. 

Overall, I really love this tote. I was drawn to the simple design as it's a no-fuss, no-hassle bag. It's not a purse that I would feel bad about putting on the ground. In fact, there's a few permanent markings from who knows what on a job, which just seems to add character to it. 

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