Crossbody City Bag

Sometimes you need to have both hands free. Like when you have your hands full of books, and yet you want to look for more.

I used to throw away those shoulder straps that come with bags, but now I roll them up and leave them at the bottom of the bag. There are times when I need both hands free, or the bag worn on my arm gets too heavy after a few hours.

We often go to Ming’s for sushi on Sunday afternoon, and then we may stop by Barnes & Noble to get my book fix. Reading before I fall asleep is the best sedative I have found.

The Officer Blue long jacket from White House|Black Market is the one I showed you earlier here. I have enjoyed wearing it many times this season. The bag is the same one from my last post here; I added the shoulder strap to wear it crossbody style. The jeans are Platinum Jeggings from Chico’s last year. The boots are a couple of years old by French Connection. The boots are so comfortable; I am not ready to let go of them. They are a bit too youthful and trendy, but sometimes on Sunday afternoon, I still enjoy wearing them for a few hours. The scarf is a couple of years old by Versace. There is likely a black Covered Perfectly top underneath. I often wear the long sleeve versions in winter because they add no bulk under my jackets, but they keep me warm.

I am wearing that new lip color I told you about in the last video here. It is called Free Spirit from Merle Norman.

  1. This is such a beautifully chic look! I love the monochromatic look in all blues then that pop of color in your scarf! Peace! Cheryl Tucker

  2. I do love that officer’s coat. And if you enjoy wearing your stiletto boots, go for it. I could never wear them due to an old foot surgery that puts me in low heels, but if you are comfortable, by all means wear them. I don’t think that they look wrong for you at all.

  3. Love the officer’s coat…great color. I am still in awe of the shoes you wear…if only… I would imagine that you turn heads wherever you go. Every once in a while I see a lady (or a fellow) who is well turned-out. You make it look so easy.

      1. Susan, I loved that book. Very well researched and so interesting. I also collect vintage books on clothing, etiquette and style. Enjoy!

  4. I am interested in knowing What makes your boots “a bit too youthful and trendy”? I ask because I struggle with shoe choices. I am drawn to high heel wedge shoes but worry whether or not they are age appropriate. One of the many things I like about your blog is your analysis of what works and what does not work and why.

    1. The platform and four-inch heel combo is borderline for me this year. I look for lower block heels in boots now. Part of my decisions are based on what is comfortable but also what is current.

  5. If you could afford only one nice handbag, what color and style would it be and why? Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

    1. That’s a good question, Sherri. If I could only have one bag, it would be a top handle pale gray pebble leather bag with a flap covered closure and minimal silver hardware. It would be smaller than twelve inches in width and structured.

  6. The coat creates a beautifully neat outline, what a good purchase. I notice you’ve mixed black and navy a few times lately. That’s a mix I’ve always felt a little uncomfortable with but seeing the photos you’ve posted, I’m gradually feeling like I just may try it, so thanks for those posts.

  7. I really appreciate the comments and discussion about your booties in this post, Susan. I also struggle, still, with the shoe issue — both in terms of comfort and what is “age appropriate.” (Truly, I hate to fall into the “What is age appropriate?” trap, because I believe we all should wear what we like, and what looks great on us.)

    Which brings me to my point. You look chic and fantastic in taller heels, and the slight edginess of this style makes your traditional outfit appear more on trend and youthful — in a way that looks natural and appropriate for you.

    Also, higher heels make all of us appear taller, which is a great look with the slim/skinny jeans too. I just wish I could find some shoe designers that make high heels that are stylishly tall as well as comfortable! Eileen Fisher comes close, but it’s rare to find a pair of her shoes under $250.

    So — as long as you are comfortable in the high-heeled booties, I think you should keep wearing them. Plus, you are giving the rest of us the courage to do the same!

  8. The only shoulder bags I carry these days are cross body bags. I have given away all my traditional shoulder bags because they cause pain in my shoulder when I use them. I love Sole Society’s vegan bags and will check out what you have added to your store. Cross body bags were an invaluable part of my wardrobe when I traveled to Europe. I could keep the bag close to my body and my hands were always free.

    1. Urban Expressions and Matt and Nat also have very nice vegan bags. I used a wallet purse for many years. Susan has inspired me to branch out with different kinds of bags. It’s fun!

  9. Personally, I love your boots, Susan. Is there any reason why we older women can’t wear something youthful and trendy? If you love them, wear them because they look great on you.

  10. You look super in the boots! My first reaction before I read your concerns was, “Oh, wow…those are quite the boots!” Second thought, “She looks fantastic in them!” Ever since I hit a certain age, my feet rebel in heels, and I’m only 5 feet tall; I do them. Any tips ladies?

  11. I think you look perfect and disagree about the boots. Very cute and not too youthful- I love you in heels!! I agree about the cross body bag and have wondered if you ever wear the shoulder bag. They are definitely perfect when flying and shopping! Very, very cute! Love all your looks and thanks for being there!

  12. I love your whole look. The cross body bag is sensible and practical. I admit that’s what I use the most. I’m always running around carrying all kinds of bags.

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I share tips and inspiration for using what you already have in contemporary ways. Defining words include effortless, classic, refined, discreet, and elegant. My style is chic, minimal, and timeless with a bit of edge.