The other day I was wandering the house looking for a specific item, a card case, and I could not find it. I searched high and low, desperately trying to remember where I last had it. And then it hit me: Millie saw it in my closet and was holding it a few months ago, I remember telling her to put it down and I remember her saying “I put it in this bag mama”. Problem was, I don’t remember which bag she put it in. This card case has a gift card I have to use before it expires, and the idea of literally throwing away money really irks me, so this began my search.
I went into my closet, and found myself with a problem I used to claim didn’t impact me: I own too many bags. I started to look, and I became increasingly frustrated. I could not find this card case, and I kept pulling more of the lower bags off the shelf. My closet isn’t an Instagram cloffice (seriously, that’s a thing – a room turned into a closet office), it’s a closet that I try to keep tidy but many times fail and things don’t always stay in their perfect space. Because I have too many bags, some of my shelves have bags stacked on top of one another, in a way that no matter how much I try to tidy up looks sloppy.
What it comes down to is not that my closet is too small, but that I own too many bags. And if you read our site and were reading last year, you’re going to pause and say ‘wait, didn’t she tell us she’ll never part with any of her bags?’. Why yes, yes I did. I shared a piece titled I Have Too Many Bags, and I Refuse To Part With Any of Them. But I’ve changed my mind.
You see I felt that way last year before our son was born. We were a family of 3 and I found my groove as a mom. I was just getting the hang of managing my work life, mom life, and even starting to finally find time for a bit of personal life as well. Then I had Vaughn, and my life was turned upside down again. Having two kids has been one of the most awe-inspiring and challenging times in my life. I am constantly attempting to balance everything, typically failing at it, and trying to find footing to be the best mom I can be while also continuing to feed my creative side with our work.
One thing that I have found more of in this is my need for less clutter and more organization. We are constantly purging toys, kid’s clothing, and just ‘stuff’. It’s astounding how much stuff we accumulate. I have worked hard to keep the things that matter and say bye to the things that I no longer have use for. For the longest time (over 10 years now), I have said that I would never part with my bags, but I’ve changed my mind. Call me a flip-flopper, a hypocrite, off my rocker, but whatever it is the truth remains that I own way too many bags.
Now, let me preface this by saying I am not looking to part with nearly any of my nicer bags – and I still have a lot of designer bags I refuse to part with. But I have amassed a large amount of contemporary bags. It doesn’t mean these bags don’t still hold a special place in my heart, but I truly have not used them in years. It’s hard enough for me to change out my bag as it is (which is something I’d really like to start as a challenge and have you all join me if you’d like). Because of that, I will carry the same bag for weeks at a time, and because of that my favorite bags are getting less use and some of the others are merely sitting collecting dust.
My bag collection is one that brings me joy because it’s such a huge part of my life. Yet, I’ve decided something that I used to say would never happen: it’s time to let go of some bags that no longer work for me. I started to sort through my collection and have found so many bags that I did once love, and I did once use, that no longer serve a purpose for me. It’s something that still puts a smile on my face and I have fond memories, but I’ve come to terms with knowing that I can hold onto memories without holding onto the items themselves.
In my original post, I received many comments in support of keeping my bags and others saying it sounded like I had hoarder tendencies. While I am not a hoarder, I am someone who kept every single bag I’ve amassed throughout my time running our site. I liked that each had a special memory, but I no longer have space or want for items that I won’t use simply to say that I have them. Plus, I find a disorganized closet/home makes it hard to find the items you actually want to use and carry.
I am slowly sorting my bags, deciding which to sell, and will keep you posted. I’m planning to donate some to local charities (there are a few I work with in our area), as well as sell others and donate a portion of the proceeds to charity as well. If you’d be interested in a second hand bag from yours truly, do let me know so I could plan to list them in a way you all could purchase if you’d like!
I want to start this decade off with less. Less to manage, less to keep up, and a house that can be kept tidier so that I feel less of a burden when I try to decide where everything should go. Oh, and that card case, Millie located it for me – slid in the pocket of an old Marc Jacobs bag I used once probably 8 years ago. That was such an a-ha moment for me. As they say, it will be out with the old, and in with the new – new bags I am confident will get more use in my collection and my life as it is now.