The Bag which started it all
It was 2005 and I was working in an average-paid job in the centre of Leeds. I liked handbags but I liked shopping for clothes and eating pizza just as much. I was in my mid-twenties and, well, careful with my cash.
But then by chance one day I saw a magazine feature which included the most beautiful bag I had ever seen. It was stunning. Thick, delicious, chocolate brown leather, chunky bronze hardwear, the most gorgeous saddlebag shape. It was perfect. It was the Mulberry Phoebe and also happened to cost £595.
I had to have it, but nearly £600 for a handbag was ridiculous. How I laugh about this now when I think about how much I’ve spent on all manner of bags over the years. In fact, let’s not think about that.
Cue six months, yes SIX MONTHS, of agonising if I should buy it. Saving up £50 a month. Popping into Harvey Nichols once a week to gaze longingly at the object of my obsession, all the while debating a bit more whether I should buy it. Six months.
Needless to say, when I had saved enough and I still desperately wanted it, I knew it had to be. Even then, handing over my card to make such a hefty purchase did make me doubt it ever so slightly, and little did I know what it would start*.
But the proof of the pudding is in the eating, and I have never fallen out of love with this bag during all that time. In fact, I might have to get it out of its dust bag and give it a spin. Yes, it’s had a repair (I had to send it back to Mulberry to have the edges re-inked, a common issue) but it’s as good as new. I can’t say the same for some of my other Mulberry bags, which is probably why the thick Darwin leather of the Phoebe is my favourite, even though it is heavy.
I will never part with this bag. It’s not the most practical now I’ve got a toddler but it’s still the most beautiful one in my collection, and it reminds me that some of the best things are the things worth saving for.
*A massive addiction of all things Mulberry for at least 10 years and a hefty handbag collection.