Please sign in to post.

Large, Relatively Lightweight Purse Found at TJMaxx

I know many women on the forum favor a minimalist purse in Europe, but I don't think I'm the only one who prefers something larger, so I thought I'd report on a relatively large, black, nylon E.T.A. by Rosetti purse I picked up at TJ Mass today for $24.99 (that's plus tax, of course). It's the Mykonos large crossbody bag. Though large, it's clearly a purse rather than a briefcase. It's actually a bit larger than I need, but I've been having difficulty finding nylon bags of adequate size since Baggallini downsized my preferred model. I have a hard time paying LeSportsac's price for the Everyday Bag, which isn't much more than a few pieces of nylon.

What I don't like about the Rosetti bag is the rather heavy metal fittings (some of which I don't need and have removed) and the unattractive large branding patch that also must go. It doesn't look it will take long to get rid of the patch, but I see no solution for the heavy-duty rings attaching the strap to the bag. But overall, the bag is still light enough to be acceptable to me. Perhaps it will be just what someone else has been looking for, too.

I regret the RFID feature of the little cardholder, because I don't like to support that particular marketing approach, but I didn't see the "RFID" label until after the purchase, and I don't plan to use the cardholder anyway.

Posted by
1772 posts

This may defeat the cost savings of the purse, but have you thought about taking it to a shop repair shop and seeing if they had any ideas? I have nylon bags that develop holes at the corners and my shoe repair guys just sews them up for me so I don’t have to buy a new purse.

Posted by
1320 posts

Did you see the reviews of that bag on the site you linked. There were several that said the bag lining ripped after two months.

Posted by
21031 posts

No, I didn't, Bob. It was an impulse purchase. No guarantees that what you see at TJMaxx today will still be there tomorrow. It's good to know ahead of time that there could be an issue with the stitching. I always travel with needle and thread, but I'll make a point of having a heavy (upholstery?) needle with me. It wouldn't be the first time a bag failed in Europe and I had to buy a replacement on the spot.

Patty, I was wondering about replacing those rings, but first I'd have to find substitutes, and that's the sort of thing that's difficult when you don't have a car. But it's a good thought, and if I find myself passing a shoe-repair shop, I'll stop in and ask. My local drycleaner no longer has an on-site cobbler. But first I guess I'd better make sure the lining isn't going to fall apart!

Posted by
1814 posts

Eddie Bauer shops often have light weight crossbody bags.
(Do you have those shops in the U.S.?)
I have two from there and really like them, though they are a few years old now.
Have used them both on multiple trips.

Posted by
1649 posts

acraven,

Have you considered Kipling? or Travelon? TJMaxx sells Kipling bags, totes, backpacks, and luggage. It's priced well below retail. Of course selection and colors will vary with each TJM. (Sometimes, you may see Travelon.) You can also catch "Hedgren" bags in some TJM stores -- priced reasonably.

If you're inclined, go to https://tjmaxx.tjx.com/store/shop/women-s-handbags-purses/_/N-3258590146?tn=3

Unfortunately, you have to go through each page of bags. The site won't allow to search for a brand name. But, at this time of year, TJM starts stocking a ton of previous models at a huge discount.

If you want to see the ins and outs of a bag, check out YT -- customers have show and tells which helps narrow down buying choices. Also, QVC.com sells a lot of Kipling now. You can get an idea and go from there. Also, they started putting bags on clearance prices.

Travelon bags used to be the "big star" on QVC. But now, Kipling has moved in and has held their own. You can also see reviews.

The Kipling USA website has bags and everything of course, some on sale, but still rather high. Macy's sells Kipling. They'll put them on sale and accept additional percentage coupons to stack for extra savings.

  • TJM will usually have the best value. Macy's and now QVC have discounted a lot of bags to make room for new ones. It's good to see what else is out there (for comparison) as I noted above.
Posted by
21031 posts

Thank you for all the suggestions.

I like to check out my travel bags in person to judge their weight and be sure I'm satisfied with the length of the top opening, among other things. I've seen some otherwise promising bags I wouldn't consider suitable for travel because their top zippers just extended the length of the bag; I like a floppy-tail zipper (don't know the technical term) so the bag opens wide and I can easily find things that have filtered to the bottom. I try to stop in and look at the purses whenever I'm near a Marshalls, TJMaxx, Target or Walmart. Naturally, when I find one I really like, I never see it again!

Also, I am cheap. Very cheap. I find travel to be hard on purses; it's so easy to scrape them against a stone wall or have the door of a bus close on them. I don't feel bad about that sort of thing if I haven't spent too much.

I have definitely seen Kipling bags; not sure about Travelon. The Kipling bags were very attractive, but I was looking for something less expensive. Perhaps I just haven't been in the discount stores at the right time of year. Probably March and April are good months to find nylon bags; I'll try to make a point of looking at this time of year in the future. I'm not interested in leather or fake leather--too heavy.

Posted by
5697 posts

acraven, if you truly are "cheap. Very cheap" start looking at charity thrift shops -- I have a Baggalini and a Travelon and some other bags from the local American Cancer Society shop, none of them above $20. Donated probably by people who got outfitted for a special trip and then decided they would never use them at home. It's a treasure hunt each time. (OK, we're retired so this is our recreation.)

Posted by
21031 posts

That's a clever idea; I do occasionally get to thrift stores (not typically convenient to public transportation), but I'm usually looking for used books or travel-worthy tops. I'll have to expand the scope of my visits.

Posted by
4249 posts

It's an attractive bag. Hopefully it will hold up for you. There is a product called Fraycheck that you can get in the notions department of a fabric store. It comes in a small bottle and seems much like super glue, but in any case, I've used that on occasion when things start to fray. I have purchased a few of the LeSportsac bags at Nordstrom Rack for a good price, if you have those. And actually we had a wear issue on one and I returned it to the Rack and it was exchanged, no questions asked. Regarding your Rosetti purse, I think I'd like the rings. They could be used with a metal clip to attach various items, a water bottle on a hot day, eyeglass case,etc.
When my daughters and I went to Europe a few years ago, one purchased a Michael Kors black purse at a Saks outlet store. I cringed at the price ($100). Well, that bag is perfect. It is a lightweight synthetic material, crossbody, with a zippered flap, with multiple pockets so things are very secure and it looks great. Even though it is lightweight, it is roomy enough for a bigger camera, and everything else one might need in a day. She takes it everywhere and I've been coveting it for two years. Finally, when i saw a very similar model at the Rack (same price) I purchased it for myself. I typically wouldn't spend that, but it wears very well and since its from nordstrom Rack, I feel like if I have a problem they will take it back.

Posted by
1649 posts

Hi ac,

When you write "floppy," do you mean "a breakaway zipper?"

If so, they can leave little gaps on the top of the bag.

They do open very wide with very little constriction. Looking at them, they don't seem to secure for travel. But I've not used one, so have no first hand knowledge.

  • Another thought...at TJM and Marshall's, they have a date coding markdown system. If you don't know how to figure it (so many numbers on tiny tickets) ask an associate. The store policy has a "hold" for customers, but not too long. If a group of bags are ready for markdown within a few days, they may hold it for you.
Posted by
1649 posts

Unless you definitely prefer the more structured organization of a hand bag, would you consider a hobo or satchel tote style?

I tend to like bigger bags with the "Mary Poppins capacity."

https://www.kipling-usa.com/chambers-handbag/HB7253.html

To give an ex. For my trips, I used the above. I have it in black, weighs .47 lbs. I got it for $39 a couple years ago. I used it as my personal item (along with a 22" carry-on for boarding on British Airways.)

It holds a ton. I just use very, very lightweight clear, cosmetic purses for extra inside organization besides pockets.

It held little purchases. It met security checks at Vatican and St. Peter's.

Ok, I don't want to overstay my 'ideas welcome,' lol.

Have fun shopping. I'm sure you'll find something soon.

Posted by
21031 posts

Thank you for all the ideas, Jules and Girasole. Yes, I do mean a "breakaway zipper". Ever so much more elegant than "floppy tail". I use bags made that way at home nearly all the time. It was buying one that didn't have the extra opening that taught me how much I disliked it. I see that I have an old bag on which the zipper simply wraps about 1" down each side, which is enough of a difference to work for me. There's really not enough extra room there to help a pickpocket, I don't think. On this new bag I can just get my index finger though the gap, and my wallet is always at the bottom of the bag. One thing I'm good about is wearing the bag cross-body 100% of the time and keeping a hand on it.

I do prefer a bag with a bit more structure than the hobo style, especially when I'm traveling. A large, wide outer pocket (ideally without a zipper) into which I can stuff things like a map and guidebook pages is key. My one pickpocketing incident in Europe occurred when my bag was unzipped as I switched from regular glasses to sunglasses (can you say "sitting duck"?), so I now try to keep the non-valuable stuff I'm handling a lot in exterior pockets: travel notes, glasses, water bottle. And I like having two separate places inside the purse that are behind two layers of zippers, so I can keep my ATM card and my credit card separated.

It's not the existence of the metal rings that I dislike, it's that they are--to my mind--excessively sturdy thus excessively heavy. This is a situation in which I'm all for cheap components. And there's also the (necessary) buckle used to adjust the length of the strap, which is quite heavy. And four exterior zipper pulls with a nice, ergonomic, solid-plastic grips. I'm guessing there's an extra 1.5 ounces of weight due to the quality fittings. I am obsessive about weight since I'm on my feet so many hours most days in Europe for months at a time. Especially toward the end of the trip, the shoulder bearing the weight of the bag sometimes begins to get sore.

I don't think I've paid much attention to bags at Nordstrom Rack; I'll have to start looking there when I can. It's true that you never know where just what you want will show up. I would never have owned a Le Sportsac bag if I hadn't encountered one at either Marshalls or TJMaxx for under $30. These days I only see their small bags at the discounters.

Posted by
1649 posts

You're welcome.

Around MA and NH, there are so many indoor malls, strip malls, outlet malls (and everything in between), a lot of TJMaxx and Marshall stores. (HomeGoods also) It can drive you nuts, lol, but can be fun too The variety and choices are good if you're on the hunt for a particular item and can compare.

According to the demographics, some stores will have a better and more plentiful selection of travel items.

I get that you like to feel a bag in person, weigh it, maybe even put some stuff in it to see how it holds up. Sometimes, a web picture and description still cannot really give you the full personal touch. What looks good for one may not be good for another. Yes, you have to try it on. Of course, body shapes are different. As you mentioned about a bag's strap, its clips and slider buckle, it can make a difference for some.

(I have leather bags, but would not consider taking them while traveling; for obvious reasons.)

Sometimes, my friend and I will haunt stores to see what's new, on sale, etc. Then we go chow. lol. It's fun.

It's a shame to worry about being picked while trying to enjoy a holiday.

  • It was mentioned -- thrift stores? Out here we also have a lot of consignment stores. I don't know about Washington area. Some stores out here tend to consign the newer, more trendy (usually brand name) bags. Some merchants are more particular because of the higher selling probability and their customer base.
Posted by
1649 posts

A little off the topic, but reminded me of a time...

When I was younger, my friends and I would go to Cambridge. There used to be some unique "vintage stores." Maybe they were consignment stores; don't recall. But we always had fun visiting them.

Once in a while, we scored pretty clothes and accessories (we used to go to clubs and never looked like the cookie cutter outfits so many wore, lol) Original. I recall getting a beautiful, black velvet jacket. It came just above the hips. It had black velvet buttons and a little black velvet bow attached to the back on the bottom. I got so many inquiries and compliments, lol. It was cute that it could be worn buttoned up as a top or open with a cami or blouse underneath. Anyway, sorry, mentioning consignments, that youthful experience just popped into my head, lol.

Posted by
21031 posts

I am really not much of a shopper, but occasionally I'm in the mood, and I get an adrenaline rush when I find something I can use at a super-low price. I've picked up a lot of cotton turtlenecks with Lands End labels for $4 or so at thrift stores.

What I really need is a new 2-wheeled, lightweight suitcase just above carry-on size, but that's an animal that simply doesn't seem to exist in US discount stores. I may just have to wait until the current bag's wheels fail and buy a replacement on the spot in Europe. That's what I did the last time, and there were quite a lot of 2-wheeled bags to choose from. Don't know whether I'll find so many options the next time the need arises.

Posted by
2 posts

I have traveled with this bag for years. Small profile, but holds a lot. Multiple compartments, all nylon/no metal rings, designed for travel. I use this as my purse and take another bag as my carry-on when I fly. There have been times I've had quite a bit of weight in it (camera, tablet, wallet, phone, miscellaneous travel items like Dramamine, etc) and the straps and zippers have all held up well. I got it at Target and it doesn't look like it's available there anymore, but looks like Swissgear carries it themselves (though it's listed as out of stock right now):

https://www.swissgear.com/swissgear-1092-vertical-travel-bag-black

Posted by
1649 posts

What I really need is a new 2-wheeled, lightweight suitcase just above carry-on size, but that's an animal that simply doesn't seem to exist in US discount stores.

I agree. Some luggage may appear to be nice, but then some of the features or weight make it unattractive. I know you know and many have suggested scouting TJM for luggage. They always have something new coming in. But again, I don't know how many in your area.

Have you considered TravelPro? They have different luggage for different needs. My TravelPro is about 6 lbs. It has a ton of room (expandable if necessary) and big, rubber wheels; not the tiny ones that get beat up more often.

Posted by
4683 posts

What I really need is a new 2-wheeled, lightweight suitcase just above carry-on size, but that's an animal that simply doesn't seem to exist in US discount stores.

acraven, look at this:

https://www.amazon.com/Travelpro-Maxlite-Expandable-Rollaboard-Suitcase/dp/B016IO9O8K/ref=sr_1_2_sspa?keywords=travelpro+maxlite+expandable+rollaboard&qid=1553708215&s=gateway&sr=8-2-spons&psc=1

It is carryon (U.S.), but you can expand it which makes it 2” wider (and thus not carryon size when expanded). I have the ”version 1” of this suitcase and it has held up well. one nice thing about travelpro is that they sell replacement parts (although the wheels on my bag have held up just fine). It is a little too big for the sizer of some of the European airlines, but I just plan to check it.

p.s. this newer version is a half pound lighter (but slightly more expensive)
https://www.ebags.com/product/travelpro/maxlite-5-22-carry-on-rollaboard/363257?productid=10689461

Posted by
418 posts

What I really need is a new 2-wheeled, lightweight suitcase just above carry-on size, but that's an animal that simply doesn't seem to exist in US discount stores.

I’ve been happy with this 2-wheeled carryon from International Traveler because it weighs only 3.75 lbs, has a single roomy interior compartment (perfect for packing cubes), and fits in Delta’s carry-on sizer. I don’t think it would stand up to being checked routinely although it’s been gate-checked a few times. Well worth a try at a price of $55 on sale currently at ebags. I travel with it for up to 9-10 days but it may be smaller than you are looking for. In that case, look at IT’s larger Wheeled bags.

Posted by
1649 posts

In case anyone comes across this thread looking for a different travel purse, check out The Bailey
https://www.macys.com/shop/product/kipling-bailey-crossbody?ID=3219344&CategoryID=26846&swatchColor=Soft%20Earthy%20Beige%20T%2FSilver#fn=sp%3D1%26spc%3D2%26ruleId%3D78%26kws%3Dkipling%20bailey%26searchPass%3DallMultiMatchWithSpelling%26slotId%3D1

I have this bag in different colors. Right now, it's not on sale. But, check Kipling.com USA and Macy's for sales and updates. I got them at $39 with free shipping.

The bags are really cute, holds its shape and is good for traveling if one is looking for a hobo style; about 12." Good for day trips walking out and about if you don't feel like lugging a leather bag all day.

I have taken my "Chambers" tote as my day bag, but I may take my "Bailey" next time. I liked the Chambers for out and about in Italy because I could put little purchases in, keep secure and not worry about carrying a few bags.

Posted by
21031 posts

I appreciate all the suggestions. I may end up being forced into a TravelPro bag at some point. I know I will appreciate the quality, but the weight... I take summer-long trips (4+ pounds of vitamins alone) and despite my concerted efforts there is always a lot of paper-based travel information in the bag; I can't quite manage carry-on size since I do need wheels and a handle. There can be up to 30 hotel changes. That's a lot of potential flights of stairs. And cobblestones, of course.

So it's a trade-off between my comfort (i.e., weight), sturdiness (mainly wheel reliability) and cost. Cheap though I am, I wouldn't mind paying more than my usual $40-$60 for better-quality wheels if the bag was really lightweight. But in my experience, the expensive, sturdily-made bags are rather heavy.

I stop in TJMaxx and Marshall's fairly often to check out the suitcases. It has been close to 2 years since I've seen a 2-wheeled bag in either store that was larger than the midgets people use to carry laptops and files back and forth between home and work on the subway. I take that back: There might have been a monstrously large rolling duffle bag with just two wheels. But nothing in the just-barely-over-carry-on size that I need. Even at Macy's there's not much with two wheels (and none of those lightweight when I last checked).

I'll just have to keep looking. I bought two bags in 2017 (including the one whose wheels failed in France that year) because I wasn't positive how large a bag I needed. I still have the larger one. It weighs 1 lb. more than the late, lamented IT bag but is probably lighter than the emergency-purchased bag from France. So I do have one unused 2-wheeled bag [correction--no, it has 4 flimsy spinner wheels] squirreled away--though the wheels seem rather fragile and it's a bit larger than I need.

First-World problem, for sure.

Posted by
1649 posts

ac,

This is what I have https://www.macys.com/shop/product/closeout-travelpro-walkabout-3-22-expandable-carry-on-rolling-suitcase-created-for-macys?ID=2584988&CategoryID=20561&swatchColor=Dark%20Purple#fn=sp%3D1%26spc%3D72%26ruleId%3D78%7CBOOST%20ATTRIBUTE%7CBOOST%20SAVED%20SET%26kws%3Dtravel-pro%26searchPass%3DmatchNone%26slotId%3D13

Very sturdy, roomy, expandable and tough. Easy to roll. It weighs 6 pounds. But, as you stated, carrying about 4 pounds worth of meds will start it out as 10 pounds.

Have you considered a cloth duffle with wheels? I don't know how it would hold up if you checked it, but, as a carry on, it's doable. Thing is, you would need packing cubes or some kind of "zip lock bag" organization so things don't go flying. And, if TSA had to open your bag, don't want your clothes and things handled.

Check out this one https://www.walmart.com/ip/Traveler-s-Choice-20-Vanguard-Rolling-Carry-on-Duffel-Black/9133941 I have this one. It's very sturdy, good zippers, tons of room -- you would need to use packing cubes if you want organization. It has a sturdy "T" handle which some may not like or may be uncomfortable. .

Features:Color: Black
Material: Polyester
FAA approved
Hideaway pull handle
In-line skate wheels
Bottom and rear protectors
Large zippered main compartment and front zippered pocket
Dimensions: 20"W x 12.5"H x 11"D
Model# 1170K
Weight: About 4 pounds

I took it on a Domestic flight. No issues. If folds fairly flat when not in use. Cover "folds back" so you can see wide open space. Lining is black though.

Posted by
21031 posts

I've thought about a duffle because of the light weight, but I can't imagine they're stable enough to be pulled rapidly across the variety of surfaces I encounter in Europe. The fact is that most suitcases work best in airports and trains station concourses, and that's not where mine spend most of their time. Edited to add: Just looked at the Walmart bags. They're not as floppy as I feared. But even the 22" has less capacity than I need, and that assumes the provided measurements are accurate.

I like the look of the TravelPro, but that also doesn't seem to have enough interior space for me, even if fully expanded. It's hard to tell, because it's clear from the picture that the entire area of the bag doesn't expand. My current bag is about 23" externally. The interior is about 3500 cubic inches unexpanded. I don't normally expand it, because the extra bulk and weight make it difficult on stairs. I'm pleased to see that TravelPro has worked on the weight, though. I have a hand-me-down from a friend that's an inch narrower and an inch shallower; it may also be 1/2 inch shorter. And the loopy thing weighs 7.8 lb. even with just 2 wheels.

I've just tossed a measuring tape in my suitcase. I think I'll measure some European luggage.

Posted by
3789 posts

I assume you don't sew or have anyone around who does sew? If you keep your purse at the same length all the time, you can remove the rings and sew the strap (at the preferred length) to the tabs,on the body. Otherwise, remove the ring and replace with some well tied ribbon, twill tape, or cording to simulate the ring, but make the strap adjustable. Even removing the one ring on the stablized side would reduce some weight. A shoe maker, upholsterer or tailor can do it.
As to 2 wheeled luggage, might be another reason to go to the thrift store....or kijiji.just give a go nose test for mildew or cigarette smoke. Other downside is the chance of old fashioned sturdiness and extra weight.

Posted by
21031 posts

I'd be competent to sew the straps to the purse if it could be done by hand, but given the weight I carry in my purse, I think the task calls for special thread and a machine. I had an old fabric purse with a non-adjustable strap that was just sewn on, and the stitching didn't hold up as well as the fabric did.

This calls for further thought, I think, and a trip to a hardware store when I'm near one. I don't believe it would make financial sense to turn the task over to a cobbler in Washington DC. It cost me $30 to have less than 1" of stitching replaced on each of a pair of sandals. It can't have taken more than 5 minutes.

Truly, with all these weight issues, it would be easier (and much healthier!) for me to lose ten pounds.

Posted by
3789 posts

If the sewing won't happen....and I agree paying someone to do it incurs crazy costs....then back to the cord option. Google gives you options for strong knots then sew ends in. You can do that before removing rings....to test. Make the cords slightly smaller to take the weight and use the bag for a while. Of course, that is dependent on whether the rings c n be removed without cutting or unsewing the straps.
In thought, there are/were tool libraries in DC. Areas to borrow tools and a workshop for a project or repair. I wonder if a sewing machine is on the tool list. One is run by a theatre company so perhaps. I know that seems overkill for this project, but if you have severalitems for a machine,,or other repairs, it might be worth the effort. Tool Libraries often go unknown to many who could benefit from them.

Posted by
21031 posts

I wouldn't have any way to physically borrow a sewing machine since I have no car; taxis would end up costing as much as a cobbler, I imagine. Being car-less does present challenges from time to time, but it helps me afford the trips to Europe, so I can deal with it.

I've just weighed the purse, and it is 13 ounces dead empty. That's annoying; it was so stuffed with paper when I bought it that it was difficult to judge what it would weigh when cleared out. I bet the two metal rings and buckle weigh at least 3 ounces in aggregate, possibly as much as 5 ounces.

Given the complaints about propensity of the lining of the purse to rip apart, the weight may not matter for long in any case!

Posted by
3789 posts

You misunderstood me, the library term is loose. There is workspace there, you don't have to check it out and take it home; work on it in place. I am a think out of the box type and tried to offer a solution for your no car life. I do get the difference, and limitations. I thought it might pique your interest to research the option, but perhaps it was too radical. Good luck.

Posted by
21031 posts

Oh, I did misunderstand. So it's like the hobby rooms some retirement communities have. I will check into that. I have a friend connected to the local theatre community; she may know of a place.

Posted by
1649 posts

ac,

Just a thought.

Have you seen the brand luggage "Lucas?" It can be found at TJMaxx and Marshalls. I'm not sure if all have spinner wheels though. But, it's very lightweight and seems a bit more sturdy compared to IT luggage.

Posted by
21031 posts

Actually, I don't know that I have. I'll make a special effort to look for it the next time I'm there. On my most recent trips I've just counted the wheels, turned up my nose and walked out!

Returning briefly to the possibility of getting access to some sort of shared sewing equipment so I can perform minor surgery on my TJMaxx purse: In one of life's truly weird coincidences, earlier today I received an email from my local library system, advising me that the library will "open the Fab Test Lab on April 17 at the Franklin D. Reeves Center, 2000 14th St. NW. Fab Test Lab will be a Do-It-Yourself space chock full of fabrication equipment to help you create your next masterpiece." The equipment to be available includes sewing machines.

Posted by
1772 posts

If you have time, will you let us know how this saga works out? It’s been fun to follow the discussion. Your purse dilemma struck a cod because I have a purse sitting in my closet that had great pockets but the metal rings were so thick that once the purse was full, it made my shoulder suffer. Good luck.

Posted by
3789 posts

acraven, before suggesting the Tool Library yesterday, I just googled 'tool library washington dc' and there are a list of articles. One from 2014 described the tool library on offer that happened to be started by a theatre. 2014 is about the time I started to hear about them in Ottawa and they are a boon for apartment dwellers or folks without wheels. Heck, attached to ours is also a seed library, for people interested in exchanging or accessing inexpensive seed for veggies or flowers. Apartment dwellers only need a few seeds for a balcony pot and at least the shared seeds would be good for local growing conditions.
I would just do the same google search as I did and see what options there are....and to see if they are still in business and at the same location. Some seem to have prohibitive membership fees for casual use, but it sounds like the notice you got from the library is just the ticket. :-)
http://localtools.org/find/
this might help.

Posted by
1284 posts

I know your cheap, but the Rosetti brand is not the most durable. You will be buying purse after purse and in the long run spend more. Kipling is my go to and I only purchase at marshalls/TJ maxx for under $30, usually a Hobo with an outer pocket. My last one was largish and I am hard on my purse and this one held up fine. I buy purses when I find them.

Posted by
21031 posts

Yes, the reviews sound as if this purse may not hold up too well, but I've had good luck with others bought relatively inexpensively (under $30) at places like TJMaxx. I carry more in my purse than most people do, so I probably prefer more pockets than average. When I find something that seems ideal for traveling, I don't use it at home. I don't mind if my at-home purse is a bit heavier, because if I head out needing to carry a bunch of stuff (water bottle, reading material), I put everything in an open-top tote bag and don't carry a purse at all.

I don't see that many purses that are designed the way I want, roughly the size I need, and made of a lightweight material like nylon. That's more the issue than my (admitted) unwillingness to pay a bunch of money. I do have my priorities: I take $130-$150 pairs of walking shoes to Europe, because my feet matter.

Posted by
4249 posts

You just never know how stuff will wear, I've had inexpensive stuff last for ever. I used to think that only the stuff that I liked a lot and that was perfect for its intended purpose was what wore out the fastest. Well, duh, its what I grab first. I, too, reserve anything that has worked well for travel to be solely for travel. I have a couple work out tops that I really like that are now relegated for travel use only. And absolutely, highest priority to feet! For bags, the highest priority is weight and size. Fortunately, there are stores in Europe.

Posted by
21031 posts

Yes, friends have tipped me off to Muji, which carries a lot of small travel accessories. Someone mentioned Muji on this forum not too long ago. I've just finished marking the Muji locations on my map of London. As far as I know, however, Muji doesn't carry purses!

Posted by
1649 posts

Hi ac,

TJM has been getting in a lot of these "new" purses E.T.A. by Rosetti They sort of resemble Kipling, which I usually suggest to women who are looking for a good travel bag (either a purse or luggage.)

The ETA styles I saw had a ton of pockets, very lightweight, nylon, wipe-able material. Good strong straps. Some are backpack style, others are square satchel or tote/purse style (with a cross body strap) and others were a regular cross body. They had only black for color choice. Not bag for pricing.

Also, the E.T.A. satchel had zip sides for bottled water. I think one of the tote styles did too.

I still really like my Kipling bags. Some find them slouchy even though they have a lot of in and outside pockets; some with zippers. TJM had a lot of Kipling too. But, as I've often written, it depends on which TJM you visit.

Marshall's has some, but, not the selection that TJM has.

Posted by
1649 posts

Added thoughts:

TJM is starting to get in a lot of Kipling. Many styles. There are some cute Kipling bags. Some are too sporty.

Posted by
21031 posts

Alas, no more purse-shopping for me until the fall. I'm off to Spain on Monday--with the same Baggallini purse I've been using for the last few trips. Hope it makes it through one more.

Posted by
3175 posts

I bought a Travelon at Target and have so far have used it on 1 1-week and 2 2-week trips and it is none the worse for the wear.

Posted by
1649 posts

Alas, no more purse-shopping for me until the fall

lol, ac.

Have fun in Spain!

Posted by
638 posts

Oh, great. I started reading this long discussion because it popped up in the feed. Then near the end, I realize that it's from three months ago. It was bumped to the top today by a spam post - which I have reported.

So, anyway, acraven, have you been using your new purse, and if so how's it holding up? Have you come up with any new solutions for light and workable luggage for your travels?

I found this discussion relevant, because I've been culling, and tweaking, my luggage collection ("collection" sounds so intentional; "random accumulation" is more honest). I'd love to walk through airports and around foreign cities with all my gear on my back, but my spine's peculiarities mean anything more than a small daypack = pain and suffering. So it's wheels to the rescue for me.

Last year I got a great ebags deal on the Travelpro Maxlite 4 International Rollaboard, which I really like. I took it as a carry-on to London (on British Airways) last year. It's light (5.5 pounds) and seems well-constructed. I've been looking for a slightly larger roller (2 wheels) to use as carry-on for some domestic flights (I fly Southwest whenever possible and their carry-on size limits are generous), and to take as a checked bag on overseas flights. I check a 'just slightly larger than carry on' size bag - for ease of handling on the ground.

Someone upthread posted a link to the Travelpro Maxlite 4 expandable 22" rollaboard. It's the slightly larger sibling of the Travelpro bag I got last year. And: I walked into TJ Maxx last week, for the first time in months - and found that bag among the sea of four-wheeled spinners! For $70. Bingo! It's six pounds which is light as that size of bag goes, and I did a test pack the other day which went well. (I'd also bought a pricey Eagle Creek carry-on roller at a luggage store, which after the test pack I returned. I love EC bags but that one just wasn't worth the price to me. The much cheaper Travelpro won that round.) The Maxlite 4 line has been replaced by the Maxlite 5. The Maxlite 5 version of that bag is about half a pound lighter.

(I have a ten year old Eagle Creek roller which is labeled as 22" - but that doesn't include wheels and handles. Also it's heavy (8 pounds), very thick at the bottom, and the interior is chopped up into compartments in a way I don't like. OTOH, It stands up beautifully to the abuses of being checked, and once on the ground its fabulous sturdy wheels have never been defeated by any pavement, street, or even patch of gravel. I was hoping the new EC would replace it, but nope. Looks like the new Travelpro will do that for now, but I'm hanging on to the EC in case the Travelpro isn't as durable, especially as a checked bag.)

Posted by
21031 posts

I'm using my old Baggallini purse on this trip. It's had a lot of hard use (over 18 months), it's rather bedraggled, and I had to buy heavy-duty thread to reinforce the stitching at both ends of the zipper. But it hasn't fallen apart yet. I'm nervous about the sturdiness of the new purse but will probably bite the bullet and take it on my next trip, along with an ample supply of the heavy thread.

The 2-wheeled European replacement suitcase (brand: Saxoline) is still trundling along after almost 10 months of heavy use, so it has been a good value. Unfortunately, a domestic airline did something to the extendable handle, and I fear it could fail at any point, making the bag impossible to check. I won't dare take it on another long trip. If I were smart I'd be looking for a 2-wheeled bag here in Europe, given how hard they are to find in US retail stores, but I hate to discard the Saxoline while it's still usable.

Posted by
9675 posts

"my luggage collection ("collection" sounds so intentional; "random accumulation" is more honest)"

Suz! I laughed out loud when I read this!

Acraven, good to have an update.

I just went to TJMaxx the other day and I always look to see if they have TravelPro cases. They had one that was an underseat 2-wheeler that might have been a 16" plus the next size down. I'm looking for an 18" or 19" 2-wheeler. I'll stumble on it some day!

Posted by
22 posts

ac...I just looked at this bag at Kohl's this past weekend (The price with coupons would have been around $30). I really did consider buying it but it was a little bigger (wider at the bottom) than I like. I didn't notice that the metal rings would be heavy or large.
Plus, I have a Baggallini that I love..
https://www.amazon.com/Baggallini-Tablet-Travel-Wristlet-Bundle/dp/B074RBQ4NT/ref=pd_rhf_dp_s_cr_simh_0_1/146-7829072-9198115?_encoding=UTF8&pd_rd_i=B074RCKXBL&pd_rd_r=faa4e56b-e11b-4f66-940f-fcd20256ee62&pd_rd_w=LlS0S&pd_rd_wg=B1MBm&pf_rd_p=67aa5820-8762-4202-90ba-881bb99c913c&pf_rd_r=S7GKR190MMCN2WM4AAZ7&refRID=S7GKR190MMCN2WM4AAZ7&th=1
(Sorry...don't know how to shorten it)
It doesn't look like it would hold much but I have used it on many European vacations and it works great. Doesn't even flop around when I bend over.

Posted by
21031 posts

I like the look of that Baggallini. I'd have to measure what I'm using now to see how the sizes compare. I'd have a hard time with something smaller..

Posted by
6 posts

@acraven. I bought the same ETA bag at TJ Maxx about the same time you did. Like you, I wanted a bit bigger crossbody for travel. Like you, I am super cheap. I usually was using a Vera Bradley Hipster, but wanted something bigger to fit a fleece or lightweight jacket plus any purchases made while I was out and about, yet still lie relatively slim to the body and lightweight. This bag seemed to fill my requirements better than most so I bought it, despite the ugly huge ETA patch on the exterior. So far, I have really liked it and it has held up well. If you took the patch off, please let me know how the bag looked afterward. I want it off but have been scared to try. One big surprise that took me a while to discover is that there is a zipper on the bottom of the backside of the bag that you can unzip to make a trolley sleeve--I love that feature!

Posted by
5697 posts

Inquiring minds want to know -- how do you manage not to fill the larger bag with excess "stuff" ? On my last trip my medium-size Travelon got so heavy that I had backaches.

Posted by
21031 posts

That's encouraging, Outlander! And I didn't know about the trolley sleeve. I do plan to remove the patch; we'll how that goes.

Weight is an issue for sure, which is why I insist on a purse made of lightweight material. I'm pretty good about not adding stuff just because there's room. My problem is the weight of the things I feel I need to have since I virtually never return to my hotel room before evening--primarily the water bottle (I travel in the summer), smartphone (I'm a solo traveler), mini-drugstore and paper-based travel info. On the worst days there's an umbrella crammed in there, too. In the days before cellphones, I carried a paperback novel around with me, so there has always been something to take up space.

Posted by
6 posts

@Laura B. -- I still just put my essentials in the ETA bag when I head out for the morning. The bag itself is very light. But I like that when I get ready to shed my lightweight jacket or raincoat, there is plenty of room to stuff it in the bag for the rest of the day instead of having to tie it around my waist or tie it to my crossbody.

Posted by
123 posts

I have a Kipling bag that I've had for 12 years and I always use it when traveling. It's light weight, secure, lots of compartments and washable. They are always on sale somewhere. Happy hunting, I'm certain you will find a bag you love.