Guest Post: The Organized Purse

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Thanks to a recent tribe-building activity with the SITS Girls, I’ve had the pleasure of meeting several bloggers in what’s become known as the Creative Living genre. One of these lovely ladies–Kathleen Boland, a professional organizer in Alberta, Canada–has graciously traded posts with me, today, and this week we’re talking purses.


I only have one purse. It is a classic black butler bag. I’m very particular about my purses. I buy them rarely and they have to live a long life. I wish I could say that I have a bag for every outfit, but that doesn’t fit my lifestyle or my budget. I’m just not that kind of girl. So if you are like me and you have one purse, it probably stores your life in it.

Even when I do a seasonal clear out of my purse I still can have over twenty items in it. If I had to do an inventory today here’s some of things you would find in there …

  1. Wallet (Slimmed down to the bare essential cards and info)
  2. Coin purse
  3. Calculator (I hate doing math in my head for billing clients)
  4. Timer
  5. Crayons in an old card box (Not all restaurants have them for kids)
  6. Keys
  7. Hand cream
  8. Mini-Flashlight
  9. Calendar (For making appointments)
  10. Notepad and pen
  11. Kleenex
  12. Granola bar
  13. Measuring Tape
  14. Dental Floss
  15. Nametag and Association Pin
  16. Matches
  17. Emergency tampon
  18. Hair elastics / bobby pins
  19. Individually wrapped hand towelettes
  20. Lip gloss and chap stick (Absolutely necessary here in the north)
  21. Mascara
  22. Ear plugs (From the activity with helicopters a few weeks back…)

Does that seem like a lot? Not to me. I’m so glad that I don’t have to pack the baby bag anymore. That thing was heavy…probably heavier than my child.

I seem to have a few “what if” items in there. I guess I like to be ready for anything. I could probably slim it down even more it I had to, but I like that I can pull out a Kleenex when someone sneezes or have a measuring tape on hand when I’m shopping for home accessories or furniture.

I love a purse that keeps me organized. The butler bag is separated into section so I just drop my stuff where it needs to go. I love that. I have seen other products that do the same thing if your purse is just an open style, like this one at Kangaroo Keeper or this one at CCKmode .

Before I had this bag I was a slave to the zipper bags. All items that belonged in the same category went into zipper bags into my purse. (Children, Health and Beauty, Work related, Money related.)

As a Professional Organizer I am always hearing about people putting the strangest things in their purses. Here are a few that should NOT be in your purse:

  1. SIN Card or Social Security Card
  2. Credit cards that have not been signed (Do it as soon as it comes in the mail)
  3. Leaky containers …ewww
  4. Important documents like your Power of Attorney (No really, it happened once)

Your purse is a living, breathing extension of you. Take a few minutes each day to pull out the contents that have been deposited that need to be filed, purged or shredded. It will take less than a minute and you will know that your purse is ready for your next adventure.

Take a few minutes now to do your own personal inventory of your purse. What is in there that can go into categories? Can I use something to organize the contents better? Do I need to re direct some items to another home?

Get your purse organized and have everything at your fingertips when you need it!

Tip: If the bottom of your purse is getting floppy, cut out the bottom of a cereal box to make a new support for the purse base. You can pull it out and replace it when it gets sticky or bent.

I’d love to hear how you got organized so please leave a comment so I can enter your name into the draw for a prize of organizing products. Visit me here and follow along each Friday for all the organizing fun.


Thank you, Kathleen!

Okay, ladies–it’s time to spill your purses! Take everything out, take a photo of it and send me a link to it (flickr, facebook, your own blog–anything goes)! On Thursday I’ll post my own photo (already took it a few minutes ago) and announce the winner of the giveaway, drawn from the names of everyone who links me a picture of their purse contents! What will the prize(s) be? I’m still deciding, but it’ll be worth it, I promise you that!

You have approximately 36 hours (more like 38), until 8pm Eastern, Wednesday the 20th, to send me your links.

8 thoughts on “Guest Post: The Organized Purse

  1. Fun guest post! Purses – can’t live with them, can’t live without them. Dental floss – that’s something I don’t carry but could use and get asked for by hubby all the time. I do try to clean it out every now and then. I almost force myself to change purses so I have no choice but to organize. Thanks for the tips and motivation.

    1. I have a bad habit of changing purses and only removing what I need for the new one–making an unofficial filing system of receipts and notes and ephemera every year until I’d need to do taxes and have to go through all the purses to find everything!

      I’m much better, now, about cleaning out my purses fully, but at least it meant I never lost anything!

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