Leather bags: love the look, suffer under the weight.
I can no longer sling a leather shopper the size of a Mini Cooper over my shoulder and charge around all day. Leather bags have to be small. But mostly, I'm hunting for microfibers.
If you, too, are minding the weight of a big leather bag, here are some light options.
Groom Paris' MV 28 is a small leather bag (14 x 28 cm or 5.5 x 11 inches), that carries the essentials.
Available in a variety of delicious colours; shown, tilleuil. Price, 210 €; available from Groom's online store.
Groom's microfibre bags are durable, washable and chic. Shown, the Clone, price, 113 €. The 53 x 30 cm (20 x 12 inches) bag has an outside zip pocket and an ingenious little pocket on the padded strap for your phone. Padded strap, best thing since the underwire bra.
Wear Mandarina Duck's Jaipur bag in the hand, over the shoulder, or wear cross-body. Measures 46 x 22 cm (18 x 8 inches), big enough to carry a book or magazine.
From Mandarina Duck's online store, price, $203 on sale. Available in blue, black, and a subtle grey evocatively called "marine".
Kate Spade's nylon Mae Hobo has a pyramid stud closure and chain-link and patent straps that lift it above functional. Size, 13 x 9 inches; price, $325 from Saks Fifth Avenue. And yes, metal feet!
Bree's Punch 49 messenger bag is made of an edgy glossed tarpaulin fabric, with a padded shoulder strap. Size, 38 x 28 cm (15 x 11 inches).
Price, €95,95 from Bree's online store. Bree bags wear well.
Lovers of ethnic textiles might choose a woven kilim shoulder bag with leather trim, $147 from Yurdan; many other styles available on the site.
Of course it's what's inside the bag, too. I'm toting one-third of what I used to hoist. A few more dreamy thoughts on the streetcar instead of reading a book, but far less neck strain.
And with good deep coat pockets, sometimes I can skip the bag entirely!