Tuesday, July 9, 2013

The Hemmingford Grey bag collection

If you were to create your own bag, what would be important? Great design would be a given. But what about functionality? And cost? Former CEO of Blacks and Figleaves.com, Julia Reynolds has given those attributes a great deal of thought and launched her own label Hemmingford Grey.

Think designer bags at half the price, crafted by artisans from the best Italian leathers. Simple, pared-back designs mean there's no shouty branding or in-your-face hardware, just a carefully edited collection that is luxurious yet practical, trend-led yet timeless, exclusive yet affordable. The average price is £150-£250 (compared to the £900+ price tags of Mulberry's classic Bayswater and Alexa bags, for example).

What is key is function doesn't suffer over style. I've been carrying the Devonshire hobo bag (£220) and the three inside pockets – one zipped – means there's no rooting around the bottom of the bag to find your phone/keys/wallet, while the inside magnetic fastening stops the bag from gaping wide open and revealing all your contents. Add the buttery soft leather, fairly discreet chrome details and its decent size and it stacks up well as a good off-duty bag. Navy is a refreshing change from black or tan, too.

For work, I'd go for the Avonsdale (like CĂ©line but far more affordable at £170) or the Belgrave with its three compartments (£250). What about you? With prices starting from just £30 and a sale on, now's the time to discover Hemmingford Grey. Check out the shoes, too. The £95 T-bar pumps are so cute.

So, does this bag make my bump look big? Bargainista Baby is now 38 weeks so we took a trip to the seaside at East Witterings over the weekend so s/he could hears the waves. The top is from River Island for £25. I just upsized to accommodate the bump.

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Bargainista Baby's Gap bear hat

It only seems right that Bargainista Baby's very first piece of clothing should be this bear hat from Baby Gap.

After all, it's a bear hat that has carved my online identity, from the days when I blogged anonymously to my Facebook and Twitter avatar, as well as being featured in The Observer Magazine in said bear hat.

And isn't this baby hat soooo cute? Originally £6.95, it's now £2.99 in the sale and comes in a plethora of colours: sunny yellow, coral pink, cornflower blue, bright green, pale grey, navy…

To quote Gap on Twitter, it's "un'bear'ably adorable!"

Now if only it came in adult size, too.


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