|My Christmas present from the Ala Moana shopping centre in Hawaii.|
Once a week I like to upend my handbag onto the carpet and put everything back one by one, clearing the clutter as I go. I also do this with my tote bag which goes to work with me each day since I like to carry things such as a smaller tote bag for walking, fold-up umbrella, notebook and pen, extra sunglasses, a book, etc.
This little routine keeps my bag from accumulating unneeded things which might get lost at the bottom and add up to a bulging bag. Just as I do not want an overweight body, I also do not want an overweight bag. It’s a good time to clear out tissues, receipts (although if you are like me your receipts will have been already entered into Excel and put in an envelope for that month) and other small pieces of litter.
If you haven’t tipped your bag out for a while (it is so much fun though, once you do it you will want to keep on doing it regularly) you would be wise to do this just before vacuum-cleaning, as there could be ‘bits’. Or a clean towel underneath that you can shake outside afterwards.
Periodically it is a useful idea to re-evaluate items you carry around just in case that have hardly ever, or maybe never, been used. It’s good to be prepared, but I have not yet found the occasion where I’ve needed to use my Crabtree & Evelyn rosewater soap flakes. And I’ve had that little packet for years.
Along the same lines, within my handbag I have a small zip bag with cosmetics, hair ties, headache pills and more in it. I sometimes tip that out on my bed and look at what’s in there to see if I actually use it. I always have a lip gloss in there but because it’s not used that often I put my newest lip gloss in since I’ll use up ones in my makeup area first. Stock rotation - not just for the pantry!
It’s such a nice feeling going out the next day with your streamlined bag. You can find everything and it’s dust- and detritus-free.
Of course if you’re a mum it’s probably a different story. A stylish and friendly lady whom I served last week (who was also very funny in a dry way) opened her beautiful black leather handbag to pay. She said, pointing to her bag which had a sandwich container and a pair of balled up socks sticking out of it, ‘do you have kids?’. I smiled and shook my head no, and she responded ‘this is what happens’.