How to buy a purse for your gal's gift

Give your gal a purse

Follow the plan
With the thousands of different purses for sale all over the world, you would think that you'd be able to find something that your gal would like. Well I'm sorry to disappoint you pal, but you've got practically no shot at picking out the right one, as gals tend to be extremely particular about their purses.

The good news is that there is a way to go about getting your gal the right purse...and the better news is that it's as easy as can be.

Just ask her
Purses come in a truckload of varieties. Clutches, crossbodies, wristlets, totes, satchels, shoulder bags, hobo bags, and so on. You don't need to know what these all mean though. You just need to find out what your gal likes.

Don't try being sneaky with this job though. Quietly inspecting her current purse lineup so that you can impress her with your supposedly "intimate knowledge" of her tastes will end with you learning only part of the information that you need.

This is because most gals have amassed a small collection of purses/bags that they've tried out over the years...some of them winners, and some not so much. Maybe she's got a fancy purse...or maybe not, but she's definitely got one or two more common looking "all-around" purses that she uses for everyday stuff. More importantly though, it's a fact that your gal has some dream purses in mind that are above and beyond everything she currently owns...unless she's royalty.

See the problem here?

If you base your purse-buying decisions on your gal's current assortment, then you're not really tapping into what she truly likes. So don't make this harder than it needs to be. Just ask her straight up what she prefers, and get the full skinny.

Her preferences
Here are the preferences you need to get from her.

Size    Large, medium, small

Shape    Flat sides with sharp angles, rounded

Stiffness    Hard-sided, soft/flexible

Materials/textures    Leather, cloth, knit, fur

Decorations    Painted designs, shiny metal buckles, jewels

Fanciness    Wild, plain

Colors/designs    Flowers, animal skins, hearts, monochrome

Find out all her favorites from this list and you'll have the basics covered...but there's one more critical thing that you absolutely 100% require before you can proceed. You need to know the exact brands of purses that she likes.

This is a gift after all, so you should know her "dream" brands as well as her "almost dream" brands (in case her top brands are out of your price range). So ask her what designers she loves, but also ask her what designers she likes. Coach, Gucci, Prada, Dooney & Bourke, Dolce & Gabbana, Louis Vuitton, Versace, Chanel...? (And these aren't even half of the famous brands out there.)

Essentially, you're asking her to "approve" some brands for you to buy her. That's the plain truth of it...and you better stick to that short list of designers that she gives you, or I promise that she'll be disappointed.

Don't go off script
To the untrained eye (your eye that is) there are a hundred lesser known brands with purses that look just as good or even better than those from the famous designers. You may feel tempted to get her one of these instead of something from her "approved" list, but don't do it. No matter how good you think these alternatives are, they're not what she wants.

Keep in mind that all of this advice only pertains to purses. As for other types of bags (like backpacks, duffels, messenger bags, and so on) you have a green light to get her any of those that you believe she'll like. You probably shouldn't get her a backpack if she never wears one, but if she owns backpack, then getting her an upgrade would be a good idea.
Gals aren't as picky with their non-purse bags, so there's no need to get your gal's approval on these...as long as they're cute.

Last thought
Buying a purse isn't difficult. Talk with your gal to find out what characteristics she likes and nail down her favorite brands. Then go buy her exactly what she described...and she'll be happy. As far as purses are concerned, this is the only way to go.

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Alec, James, Richard
and our army of gals