It’s an old one, this, but still a good one.  There is nothing quite so satisfying as seeing what people tote/backpack/crossbody with them in their everyday life.  Like most people, the contents of mine vary by bag, and this Fiorelli backpack is probably averagely sized for me.  So let’s dive in.

Structure wise, the bag has two main zipped compartments, a large zipped pocket on the front, and a vertical zipped pocket on the back.  Inside the rear compartment, there are two slip pockets and one zipped pocket.

What does it have in its pocketses?

The front zipped pocket contains the things I need easy access to.  So that’s my house and car keys, my ID and pass card and my Kate Spade cardholder (debit card and train tickets usually).

Main compartments

For the main compartments, I keep what I’d call my less-essentials in the front compartment of the two.  It’s here that I will search to lighten the load before leaving the house if the bag is too heavy, or struggles to zip.

In the rear compartment

In the zip section: coin purse (Accessorize) with change

In the two slip pockets: phone, flat powerbank, pens


  • My wallet.  I’m normally a wallet flirt, but I’ve been in this one for at least three years now and it still looks pretty good.  It’s got the perfect amount of card slots for me, a couple of extra slip pockets for stamps and receipts, plus a central chunky slot for a small phone, which I use for a load of loyalty cards.  I could fit my change in here, but tend to decant it to a coin purse, so I know I have change when I need it.  The wallet itself is full of happy memories too, as I bought it after a great lunch with friends
  • Small notebook (this one from My Little Box) for personal stuff and large notebook (one of a set of three from Hema) for work stuff.  Keeping it separate helps me decant the two more effectively.
  • Small plastic wallet (Wilcos) with vouchers, paperwork
  • Mr Kindle (Kindle Fire 8)  (Gotta read!)
  •  Planner (Kate Spade) – Full of planner love for this beauty which I picked up in Nashville last year.  I’ve documented her set up in another post here.  It holds my schedule, work expenses and notes and personal budget.  The matching pen was one of my Christmas presents from OH.  (As I was cooing over the matchy matchyness of it, he said “I thought it looked a bit familiar…”)

Front Compartment

Here I keep:

  • an orange pouch with a snack and lactose free milk minis (with allergies and intolerances I can still knock up a fine picnic if needed)
  • mints
  • brush & hairspray (less vanity, more blessed with the sort of hair that the term “dragged through a hedge backwards” was invented for)
  • comfort eye gel and allergy meds (tis the season to be sneezy)
  • folding shopping bag
  • black and white pouch containing face wipes, mini sewing kit, two lip balms, mini hand cream, anti-bac, Eight Hour Cream, mirror
  • gold pouch with essentials: prescription meds, painkillers, pen, pencil, scissors, glasses repair kit, nail file
  • water bottle
  • mini office (in a round Pia purse) containing stapler, tape, post its, paperclips and binder clips.


The rear zip pocket is (shock and horror) empty.

 Hardly minimal, is it?  But I use pretty much everything, save the emergency stuff, on a regular basis, and I’m sometimes out of the house for 16 hours on its contents.

What’s In My Bag: Work Tote Edition

 I’ve also done a What’s In My Bag: Work Tote edition, which you’ll find here.  As I work from home, it may seem unnecessary, but actually it works pretty well.  I’ve been known to work in my study, at the kitchen room table and sprawled on the sitting room sofa. Sometimes on rare halcyon days, I work from the table in the back garden (where the wifi reaches more easily than it does to the top floor of the three story house. Go figure.)  Being able to port most of my essentials in a mobile office around with me saves a lot of time sifting them from my main desk, and means I shed less of them on the stairs.

Author: Bernie

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