Purse Organization

marylizJuly 12, 2009

OK, the topic is purse organization. For those of you who carry a purse, briefcase, backpack, etc. regularly...

Could you describe your bag/case? What types of dividers/pockets/other special features does it have? Why do you like them so much?

Do you use the same thing every day, or switch purses, depending on your outfit, occasion, etc.?

What good habits do you have for keeping your purse organized?

Have you ever tried one of those purse inserts that is designed to be taken out of one purse and put into another, saving you from having to dump out everything?

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Could you describe your bag/case? What types of dividers/pockets/other special features does it have? Why do you like them so much?
They are small. Usually one zippered pocket.

Do you use the same thing every day, or switch purses, depending on your outfit, occasion, etc.?
The same almost every day.... but special ones when I dress up.

What good habits do you have for keeping your purse organized?
Keep it small, and don't be a pack mule for family members.

Have you ever tried one of those purse inserts that is designed to be taken out of one purse and put into another, saving you from having to dump out everything?
Nope... no need to. Not enough in there to warrant such a gadget.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 6:31PM
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I have a small leather Coach bag I use day in and day out. I tend to use one purse till it wears out or breaks. This one is good leather, I've had it about 18 months. I try to carry as little as possible-a case with my drivers license, a few credit cards and my medical insurance cards. My cell phone, check book, a pen, a little cash.

    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 6:52PM
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I tend to keep my purse very small. In fact, if I'm carrying glasses, lipstick, meds, a pen, a notecard and business card, along with a credit card, (insurance card, library and grocery store cards), microfiber for cleaning glasses, tissue, gum, reusable shopping bag and cellphone, I will put a teeny bag in my ''just a little bigger wallet bag''. The teeny bag holds two cards, folding paper $, a pen, 3x5 notecard, business card and ''teenier'' reusable bag which folds into itself, my cell phone and extra charged cell phone battery. There's not enough room for my keys, so I clip those onto the outside of the teeny bag if I don't want to carry my wallet bag just to run into a store quickly. If I'm going to be in a situation where I need my water (which is in an reusable SS thermos mug), my hand-held fan, perhaps a visor, a book or some lunch, I put my wallet bag into a shopping bag and carry that with all the ''extras''. OK, I know it all sounds a little convoluted, but the bag-in-a-bag-in-a-bag thing works well for me. I can pick the size I need, according to what I'm using it for.

I don't changes purses often, but will when I get bored with what I've been carrying.

Yes, I've tried a ''purseket'', and think they work quite well if you have the right kind of bag, but I find it helps if you have a little flashlight you can turn on inside your purse, so you can see the contents. If you're good about putting things away, I suppose the flashlight isn't completely necessary, but I've used the light more than I can say. They work well if you tend to carry a medium sized to large bag, and your bags are all the same size. Since I started going smaller, they don't work as well for me in the same manner.

I switched from leather (too heavy for me any more) to Baggallini bags. I love that they're organizers, along with the different sizes/colors. The inside is a contrasting color from the outside, which helps you see the contents much more easily, if you choose a darker bag with a lighter color inside. My favorites are always small. (I learned how to downsize a long time ago.) Everything else I ''may need'' I just keep in my car, which is entirely a different list!!

Here is a link that might be useful: Baggallini

    Bookmark   July 12, 2009 at 8:00PM
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I have a 'Maggie' purse by Danny K (link below). I saw a display of his stuff at a crafts fair and fell in love with all the fabrics. They are well made. The Maggie has compartments for glasses (reading AND sun) and a few zippers for other storage. They do have retail outlets, mostly small hospital/museum shops.

Here is a link that might be useful: Danny K purses

    Bookmark   July 16, 2009 at 5:27PM
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I have a Nine & Company purse. The handles are long enough to go over my shoulder but not long straps. The handles are also substantial, which I like.

First section has a pocket for my cel phone, another pocket holds my tissues and calculator, and pen. It also holds a cosmetic case that holds a tape measure, comb, eye drops, glucose tablets, cough drops (I like this case because it is see through and I don't have a bunch of stuff on the bottom of my purse).

The next section holds my wallet (checkbook is inside wallet along with 3X5 index cards for notes) and keys.

Then there is a zipper compartment which holds nothing.

The next section has my diabetic kit for checking my glucose and a pill holder, then a zipper compartment which holds my money. I really like the way my purse is organized as it is very easy to find everything I need and easy to change purses.

I like the purse so much it is the only style I have, it is medium size, not bulky and I like the style. I have it in black, black pattern, red, lime green, gold, tan, brown, tan pattern etc. I find them on sale all the time at Kohl's store for 60% off all the time and have bought 5 at a time when they are on sale. The purse is usually $40, but are $16 when on sale. I see other women with the same purse all the time.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2009 at 1:31AM
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Those DannyK bags are beautiful! Lots of pretty fabrics, sizes and accessories. I'm shopping for a vertical tote to use for work. The more conservative fabrics would be just right, I think. I need something soft but professional looking. Thanks for the link.

A small Baggalini, which I already have, would fit inside.

On topic for this thread - I carry a black leather briefcase type bag for work. I switch out my wallet, sunglasses, phone and keys to a regular purse when I go somewhere else. I keep a comb, lip balm, pen in both. All too often I go somewhere directly from work and find myself either carrying my briefcase into a store (I look like a sales rep rather than a customer) or my wallet/glasses/keys/phone in my bare hands. Neither is optimal.

    Bookmark   July 19, 2009 at 3:09PM
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WalnutCreek Zone 7b/8a

I have a Marc Jacobs handbag that I just love. It is not sectioned off, however, it has a pocket for my cell phone, another pocket holds my Palm, and pen. On the other wall of the bag is a small zipper compartment that I keep keys in.

I keep a wallet with checkbook; a three-compartment clear plastic cosmetic bag (about 7 ½" wide X 5" high X 1 ½" deep that zips and also has a smaller zipper pocket on the outside which covers an unzippered pocket; a steel tape measure, an small opera wallet in which I keep credit cards and store discount cards; a glass case with sunglasses, and a glass case with reader glasses.

The larger zippered pocket of the clear plastic cosmetic bag contains a three-compartment lipstick case in which I carry BertÂs Bee Balm, a lip gloss and a lipstick and a compact of pressed powder and a lipstick brush. In the smaller zipper outside pocket, I have a Shout wipes (for wiping up any mishaps on my clothing) in a carrying case, a small Ace rubber pocket comb, a pack of PepcidAC, a Diamond Deb small fingernail file, dental picks in a container, a very small perfume spray, and a sharpener (for those times I carry a pencil lip liner). In the unzippered pocket, there is a container of pocket-size Kleenex. With the clear plastic, I can see everything that is in there and can get to it quickly when needed.

This does sound like a lot. However, recently I was at a business meeting where I asked one of the physician attendees to get something out of my bag for me; she commented that my bag was the most organized she had every seen.

    Bookmark   July 22, 2009 at 7:07PM
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Could you describe your bag/case? What types of dividers/pockets/other special features does it have? Why do you like them so much?
I just bought an Ameribag. Very light nylon, so the bag isn't already heavy before I add all my stuff. It has a lot of pockets and helps me organize myself.

Do you use the same thing every day, or switch purses, depending on your outfit, occasion, etc.?
I use the same bag every day, with the exception of a few special occasions.

What good habits do you have for keeping your purse organized?
Have a specific spot for everything!

Have you ever tried one of those purse inserts that is designed to be taken out of one purse and put into another, saving you from having to dump out everything?
Yes, I had a purseket I bought from the container store. It was alright, but a seam came apart and I decided to return it. I prefer to have a purse with sections and pockets vs the added weight of an organizer>

    Bookmark   July 28, 2009 at 5:02PM
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My bag? I am on the constant lookout for the perfect bag, and have been for 30 years. At the moment I am using a dressy type of backpack/handbag, and so far it's been the one that suits me best. It has 2 small outer pockets, one with a zip, which I like for the security of my wallet and mobile phone. It has 3 separate sections, two outer ones zip up and the middle one clips together with a magnetic stud. When they're all closed, it's very compact and neat, and stuff can't fall out, but it's easily accessible. I have a lanyard attached to the inside of the middle pocket, and I have finally got into the habit of using it for my car keys. This has saved hours of my life!
I love the fact that I can sling it onto my back when I want to use my hands...no more slipping shoulder straps, no more leaving my bag on the shop counter, and no more neck strain.

I use the same bag every day, except for things like weddings, out for dinner etc. I still take my bag with me, but leave it hidden in the car, and just use a little clutch with a loop strap, for a tissue, lip gloss and mints.

I don't use purse inserts anymore for my everyday bag. I found I just didn't use them. But I do have them in my tote bags... for library, yoga, swimming etc.

I have one habit for organizing my bag.... don't know if it's good or not.. but it works for me. When I'm out for coffee with my friend, or eating out with my DH, or if we're on a trip, or have to sit in a waiting room, that's when I clean out and tidy my bag. I just hope anyone watching will think I'm looking for something. Occasionally I tip it upside down on a towel on the bed, and start from scratch, but that's usually only after a holiday or trip away when I just shove anything and everything in my bag.

Interesting, here in Australia, we say "purse" for our wallet, and "bag" or "handbag" for what most of you all call your "purse". I used to get confused when I first came on here, why it was such a big thing to organize your "purses" till I realised you meant the "handbag"...LOL

    Bookmark   July 28, 2009 at 6:35PM
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I use a coupon organizer-type thing for all my receipts--so one of those nylon wallet things that is about like a fat envelope--I have sections for about 6-8 or so of my most common stores (TJ Maxx!). Around Christmas I sometimes use a separate section for gifts or for the DDs' gift clothing purchases, but otherwise by store is best; and in the back is just all other. I put every receipt in as soon as I make a purchase. As soon as I determine something is "going back" and perhaps I put it in my car, I will usually check for the receipt, dot the item, clip the receipt to the top of its file divide with a little clippy (so I don't have to go through several receipts for that store again) ; but, it stays in the file. I've trained myself to always go through the same steps (do not put it in the bag; do not put it in jeans pocket) I never lose receipts and am more likely to return an "iffy" purchase. Once every month or 2 I go through them and throw away ones not needed (such as clothing or household items that are now in use); save in another file ones related to any major purchase like appliance, electronics that is not being returned but might need if it has some problem. I could do the same for clothing, shoes etc in case they fall apart too soon, but have not found that to be a big issue so it's not worth the trouble.

It takes up a little space, but then my regular wallet stays slim and my system seems to work for me.

    Bookmark   July 29, 2009 at 7:26PM
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Recently it occured to me that I had become a pack mule. I got so frustrated juggling my purse, briefcase and laptop. Then the cell would ring and I had to dig for it. Grrrrr.

I sat down, designed a tote lined with interior pockets to hold specific items and made it just large enough to hold the laptop, folders and even a book or two, if needed.

The straps are the exact length I need.

I made a sample, intending to make another of a more serene fabric. But I love my orange, peach and yellow tote so much, I use it daily. One bag to grab, everything in it's place all the time.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2011 at 3:45PM
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I carry a medium size bike messenger bag made by TIMBUK2.
I like it because I can carry it with the strap across my chest, leaving both hands free. It's got two interior sections and a couple of zippered enclosures which I use for phone and iPod. The interior is lined with a waterproofed material so nothing and I mean NOTHING damages it.
It's wide enough to hold my laptop, a notebook or folded newspaper.
I try not to carry more than I need for any one day.
The best discipline I've adopted is to empty it completely every night. This way I can be sure to retrieve receipts, toss wrappers, etc. and make sure I only have what I need for the next day.
If I'm going out and dressed up, I only carry a small clutch but often try to carry nothing except single car and house key, $$ and my drivers license in a pocket.

    Bookmark   May 1, 2011 at 11:08PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

I love my bag! I just replaced it. I rarely change my purse, I use the same one every day. I am a pretty practical person and dress casually 95% of the time. I'm also concerned about losing my bag anywhere or forgetting it, so for years, I've used a fanny pack. I was getting tired of it and wanted something more fashionable, so I've been on the lookout for awhile to find something to replace it with. Fanny packs had gone out of style too, so I rarely saw anything that worked for me.

Then I found Overland Equipment. They have a great line of bags. I just bought the 'Bayliss' style. What I like about it....

It's just the right size for me

It has a long strap that let's me carry it across my body and adjusts to get it to position just right. When I have it across my body, I forget it's there. I can get in and out of the car without removing it and strap my seatbelt without interfering with it if I want to.

It has plenty of compartments, some that are lined to cushion and protect cell phones and eyeglasses. Some zippered with mesh that you can see through. Places for a pen, and a snap for your keys so you don't have to rummage around for them.

It has a layer of protection in the flap that prevents anyone from electronically stealing your credit card information.

It's made of very sturdy materials and construction giving me confidence that it should last a long time.

It has a snap that allows me to adjust the strap and wear it around my waist if I want to.

    Bookmark   October 25, 2012 at 12:30PM
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ooh, prairiemoon2, thanks for the info on that bag!

    Bookmark   November 1, 2012 at 4:34PM
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prairiemoon2 z6 MA

Your welcome, Sue. They also have lots of other sizes and styles for different purposes. I've also seen some online that are on sale, probably due to a discontinued color. Which is good because they are not cheap bags.

    Bookmark   November 1, 2012 at 7:42PM
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I have a Fossil Sydney tote which I love and strive very hard not to overfill. It has fabulous organization inside. I also have a very simple, understated cotton jacquard Calvin Klein satchel which has a zippered pocket divider that sections the purse into two large compartments, plus the usual cell pocket, glasses pocket, and smaller zipper compartment for private things. I keep receipts in the larger zippered compartment in each bag. One is bone leather, the other black cotton, so I change bags seasonally.

Like Lilly Dilly, I too am realizing that there is no zippered purse out there that is perfect for me, and that I'm happiest with my choices when I have a clutter-free handbag.

    Bookmark   July 13, 2014 at 3:22PM
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