Price Points: Book bags

Book bags made to look like book covers

What’s your favourite book? Do you prefer fiction or non-fiction? Whatever your chosen reading may be, these book bags are perfect for toting it around… along with your keys, phone, purse, tissues, lipstick – whatever!

Back in the day, when I used to have a daily rail commute (and before mobile phones were so ubiquitous), I used to read books voraciously. I read Lord of the Rings entirely on the Todmorden ↔ Manchester train. I was also addicted to crime fiction, long before the advent of Scandi Noir.

Unfortunately, I never seem to find that kind of time any longer – more’s the pity. I think one of these book bags would certainly get me back into turning those pages!

  1. Book handbags and clutch bags by The Literary Gift Company: £30, Notonthehighstreet
  2. To Kill A Mockingbird leather book bag: from £143, Etsy
  3. Dolce & Gabbana book padlock top handle bag : £4,750, Harrods

Gimme Five! Clutch bags

"Gimme Five!" blog post banner

selection of 5 ladies' clutch bags

Maybe because it’s my birthday in less than a fortnight, but recently I’m finding my head being turned by cute clutch bags 😉

Yes, I’ve already got lots of bags – but I could always find a little space for one of these. The most expensive example is 100 times more expensive than the cheapest, can you guess which is which? No peeking at the answers!

  1. Oversize vegan leather envelope clutch – rose pink – £6.44 Etsy
  2. Day to evening leather clutch by E&S Elves & Shoemakers – £125, Notonthehighstreet
  3. Metallic clutch – £25, River Island
  4. Sarah oversized envelope clutch bag , yellow – £39, John Lewis
  5. Mulberry Clemmie glossy goat leather clutch – £695, Selfridges

Welsh Wool

Vintage Welsh wool selection | H is for Home

Our last blog featured the characteristic designs of mid 20th century German pottery and how it captured an era. Another favourite of ours, with an equally distinctive look, is Welsh wool with its astounding range of colours, patterns and textures.

Welsh wool detail | H is for HomeClaret & cream

Welsh wool coat detailvibrant orange & olive green

Welsh wool detail | H is for Homeshades of coffee

A number of mills have produced these high quality textiles over the years and in some cases still do. A couple of good examples producing traditional Welsh wool tapestry are Trefriw Woollen Mills and Solva Woollen Mill.

The distinctive designs are not ‘tapestry’ in the truest sense of the word but, are in fact, double woven cloth producing a pattern on both sides.

Mills produced textiles for sale by the length and also produced their own range of homewares including blankets, throws, cushions, place mats etc.

Vintage Welsh wool coasters in original packaging | H is for HomeTapestry drink coasters

In addition, these textiles were purchased wholesale by fashion manufacturers including Gwydir Garments, Dwyryd Clothes, Coracle Clothes, Gannex and many more.

Vintage Welsh wool zipped jacket | H is for Home Vintage Welsh wool zipped jacket | H is for Home

The cloth was then made up into coats, jackets, capes, waistcoats, skirts, belts, hats, handbags and purses.

Vintage Welsh wool handbag | H is for Homevintage handbag

Vintage Welsh wool skirt & waistcoat suit | H is for Homeskirt & waistcoat suit

The 1960s were undoubtedly the heyday for Welsh wool. Nothing screams the 60s quite like a Welsh wool tapestry cape, mini skirt and knee-high boots. In fact, Mary Quant was known to make trips to Wales to source fabric for her fashion house.

Welsh wool cape and handbags | H is for Home

However, recent designs by Melin Tregwynt have really moved things on once more and are much loved by contemporary interiors magazines. Whether it’s this modern look or the vintage pieces, these textiles look fantastic in the home.

Vintage orange & green Welsh wool coat on stick back chair | H is for Home

The green and orange colourways look amazing with dark woods such as teak and rosewood, the bright pinks zing against white acrylic and browns & creams lift rustic pine with a bit of subtle colour and texture.

Welsh wool place mat with Cathrineholm kettle | H is for Home

There are obviously no rules though, and the range of colours and patterns allows for great fun and flexibility.

Quality vintage pieces remain affordable and, having been out of favour for a few years, are being appreciated once more.

A creeping rejection of the cheap and mass-produced, the recognition of hand-crafted objects and the use of natural products stands Welsh wool in good stead for the future.

Vintage Welsh wool handbag | H is for Homevintage handbag

Vintage Welsh wool handbag | H is for Homevintage handbag