STYLE AND DESIGN
The styles of purses are so situationally relevant that this section could take a hundred pages or so, filled with the inevitable if-then remarks and disclaimers that make me feel good....like those labels on multivitamins and 'natural' remedies.
The style of purse communicates more about how a woman wants to be SEEN than it does about how they actually are. Often times, you'll see a very neatly dressed woman with a simple and elegant purse who has a six-foot pile of laundry and a week's worth of dishes piled up back at home. We will dig into this a bit here, and venture into how things like how quickly a woman's eyelids blink will confirm or BUST her image of neatness or social exuberance. I just leaned back and warmed my palms up to begin writing this, so it must be business time.
The upper bone of the arm is called the humerus. This is actually where the 'funny bone' got it's name. When the humerus is squeezing a purse to the body, you can almost always use this as an accurate barometer of anxiety, tension, self-doubt and self-consciousness. If you look at the humerus as a gauge, like I do, you can envision the shoulder being the fulcrum, or base, and the elbow being the needle of our gauge: The closer to the body the elbow is, the more intense the level of the above mentioned emotions is being felt.
Purses come in all shapes and sizes. Hundreds of ways to communicate to the world what you stand for, believe in, how adventurous you are and how many 'likes' you can get when you post a photo of your 85th fortune cookie prophecy.
In a blog article on MissPivot.com, I read the following, "There are the obvious things. Certain labels say, “I care about labels and have the means to back that up.” Sequins say, “I am a lot of fun.” Like a friend in high school used to carry, a metal lunchbox says, “I am quirky and do not conform to societal expectations.” Original Article here: http://misspivot.com/blog/a-womans-purse/
While this was a very well written article, and women do communicate these things with their purse selection, it is even more important to note that the purse selection is more often about how a woman wants to appear than how they actually are.
The flashy purses are first in line. These range from sequin-covered totes, pink and camo purses to logo-covered Louis Vuitton bags. The sequin-covered bags and bright colored, shiny purses all communicate that someone is likable, outgoing, adventurous and most likely fairly easy to talk to. They like to be seen as expressive, feminine and fun.
The Louis Vuitton and similar bags covered in branding and logo designs are all a show of social or socioeconomic status. The wearer tends to be concerned with brands and typically will size others up by looking for designer logos, branding, etc. This is an attempt to broadcast wealth or status, regardless of whether it actually exists. The logo carriers will typically also have a similar wallet in their purse, non-drugstore label products inside and will almost always have an equally flashy/colorful cell phone cover. These two categories also both have one VERY common thread: Attention-seeking behavior. While most all humans are wired already to seek attention from others, these women would score higher on the scale than others. Line all these up and you've got a certified attention-seeker. This isn't bad. It just means they will appreciate more eye contact, paraphrasing to show understanding, and genuine attention while they are speaking.
COMPASSIONATE AND CREATIVE
These purses are typically made up of yarn or natural materials, lack logo and branding and have a less 'elegant' appearance in contrast. These people will usually have a phone close at hand to 'connect' with others, minimal makeup and will usually carry feminine products without even a tinge of embarrassment. The wearer of this purse connects well with authentic people, but is not keen on starting loads of conversations with strangers. She will also be the type to keep journals, start projects that don't get finished and will have an artistic history. She will almost always have something in there that she can use to help someone; a peppermint, bandaid, extra pen or gum. Mention puppies and you're in...
These purses were designed for parties. The design rules still apply here, and you can also get a good baseline for how often it's been used by observing the amount of wear on the corners and the inside of the accompanying wrist strap. Just the essentials go in here. A few cards and a phone in most cases. A small or inconspicuous feminine product neatly tucked away and a few hastily crumpled bills from the cover charge desk. This girl thrives on stimulation from the outside world. Her phone battery is usually hovering at about 40% by noon and if her favorite song comes on the radio while in conversation...just shut up. The clutch without a wrist strap (assuming it is without strap on purpose) demonstrates a more trusting personality. Notice the difference between the ones who zip or fasten it all the way shut and those who do just enough to keep it shut. This attention level indicator will also tell you how present they are and how much the environment or surrounding people are keeping her attention. Girls who leave their purse on the table without checking to see who's going to watch it are certain to come from a family with a protective father or a servant-natured little sister. As for the way we handle objects, we will cover this in another article in the future.
Purses matching outfits, blending in, non-flashy and purses appropriate for business are designed to do the opposite of the other purses. They are designed to draw attention to the person instead of the accessories and purse. These women may not always carry this type of purse, but we can assume they are serious about their career and want to be taken seriously by others. The contents of her purse will be readily-accessible makeup, pens, phone, notebook, Advil and other things that the woman on the go needs. With her purse, how does she hold it? Are there water spots on the bottom from resting on tables where water glasses have been? Careless marks from pens? Scratches from wedding rings on the inner lip? This woman appreciates brevity in conversation as much as she does personal space.
In the next section, we will discuss the minute details and meaning of how a purse is grasped, handled, carried and manipulated.
Chase is still on active duty in the US Military. Please share an article if it's interesting to you.