Commuting in Style with the "D.C. Commuter Bag?"
Commuting in Style with the D.C. Commuter Bag?
I’ve come to terms that a list of things must change as I enter into the New Year and one of these changes includes finding a stylish, yet durable commuter bag to take on Washington, D.C.! In the midst of moving, I had friends tell me about the “D.C. Commuter Bag”. While I prioritized finding information on the D.C. neighborhoods, landscape of the city, and overall attractions, I soon realized I also needed a durable bag that would get me from one location to the next via the train, bus, and/or walking. Little did I know that when my friends mentioned a “D.C. Commuter Bag”, they weren’t talking about the large “cutesy” handbags I usually carry. Instead, they were talking about a compartmental bag that would become my new best friend and that would assist during my daily commute.
Over the past two months, I’ve taken note of my commute throughout the city. From work to home, from home to shopping, from shopping to the grocery, and from an after work event back to home, I’ve realized my cutesy handbags aren’t going to suffice for the lifestyle I want to live here in D.C. I’m not saying I will stop carrying my cutesy handbags (because I love each and every one), but I need to find a commuter bag that is compartmental, does it’s job, is very stylish, and compliments my personality.
Typically, I pack my lunch for work, carry coffee on the bus and train, a make-up bag filled with toiletries (tampons, Kleenex, hand sanitizer, pocket mirror, aspirin, and chap stick). In another make-up bag, I carry a wide range of lipsticks from reds, to pinks, to burgundy (just in case I want to change lipstick colors during the day). Additionally, I also carry a set of earphones, my wallet, phone charger, a pair or gloves, business card holder, work laptop, and a mini umbrella (I quickly learned to always carry an umbrella everywhere you go since I moved here). At this point, you’re probably thinking how can she fit so many items in one handbag. Especially, a cutesy one with short straps and minimum compartment holders? Your guess is as good as mine!
During my bus and train rides each morning, I’ve noticed the “pros” of D.C. carry messenger bags with straps that come across their shoulders and/or a backpack. I assume that within these bags, are plenty of compartments for items (such as lunch, laptops, folders) and after work to events (extra pair of shoes, make-up bags, extra set-up of apparel). I’ve also noticed that minimal people carry coffee on the train and bus (unless, their cups are completely sealed), have card holders on the back of their phones to eliminate searching for their metro card every time they enter and exit the train station, and position themselves and their bags strategically to reduce the amount of space they take up during their commute.
For myself, I’ve struggled to find the best commuter bag that’s going to get me to and from a location without having to struggle. I’m a huge advocate of carrying handbags to match my daily outfits. Each morning, I get a little depressed when I have to carry the only “commuterish” handbag I own. On top of that, I also enjoy changing the coats I wear each morning to match my mood. Sometimes I want to wear the bulkiest fur coat I have and other mornings I just want to go with a camel coat. Depending on which coat I select, also depends on how my shoulder/arm will feel by the end of the commute (a.k.a slowly building my arm muscle).
Writing this post has been personally fulfilling for me, because it’s nice to know that I’m not the only person who’s faces these challenges and that I have community of supporters who will send me recommendations. In stating this, if you know of anyone who enjoys looking stylish while commuting, let me know. Additionally, if you’re a city dweller like myself who has been through the same “Beginner City Problems”, let me know how you’ve overcome these challenges and what type of commuter bag you’ve purchased. There will be more “D.C. Commuter” bag chronicles to come, but I thought I would give you a Kentucky girl turned D.C. girl commuter update!