Especially since having babies, I've become a bit of a handbag addict. Bags are the one fashion splurge I've always known would fit over the past four years as I've been pregnant, postpartum, nursing, pregnant again (whilst nursing!), postpartum, nursing, and yes, pregnant AGAIN (!). A truly fabulous bag can make any t-shirt-and-jeans with a three-days-without-a-wash 'do look amazing, and the right bag can replace esteem-usurping diaper bags if you're willing to give up a little storage space in the interest of personal style.
If you're out of diaper bag phase, congrats! Skip this paragraph and head on down for my spring bag picks for moms.
If you're still changing nappies or hanging out with a toddler who has the occasional accident (or, like me, both), here's how I make non-diaper bags work. First, I keep a fully stocked emergency bag in my car. It has snacks, juice boxes, diapers, wipes, first aid, and a full change of clothes for both babes. I can't remember the last time I needed to dip into it, though. Second, I carry one of these fab Planet Wise reusable wet bags in my purse. In it are 1-2 diapers and a travel size wipes case for my 20-month-old, and a pair of cotton gym pants (soft enough to be worn commando) for my preschooler--it's very slim, about the size of a small clutch, and it fits in every one of my big (but fabulous) mom bags. If I end up with a wet or poopy mess, I dump the other stuff out and zip up the offending items in the wet bag--these babies are air tight. I carry a few band-aids and a Neo To Go! in a small make-up bag along with my lip gloss and such. And last, I usually carry a few compact, packaged snacks like squeezable fruit, fruit twists, Z Bars, apple chips and the like loose in my bag, and then I call it a day.
It could be that I'm a terrible, under-prepared mother, but I mean, how far can you really get and how long can you actually stay out with a small child? How much can that child possibly eat and drink, and how many diapers and changes of clothes can he possibly require during that three-to-four-hour period? Where will you be that you can't get her a drink of water or a cracker? If the day has gone that far south, chances are it's time to head home for a nap anyway, so get yourself a fab bag, Mamas!
I'm loving the soft slouchy look of cross body bags for moms, and the muted, neutral color palette will go with most anything. Little else will be as functional when you need your hands free to wrangle your babes, and more structured hand bags and purses wont wear as well as these soft leathers and synthetics. Here are my picks:
$178 - piperlime.gap.com
$138 - piperlime.gap.com
$102 - bluefly.com
$114 - bluefly.com
$160 - piperlime.gap.com
$75 - topshop.com
$250 - lunaboston.com
$10 - cottonbabies.com
Happy spring, Mamas!