by Waltrui

I'm a drama queen when it comes to cleaning out my closet - think: tears, pathetic gestures and a runaway boyfriend. Hence my extensive collection of handbags, most of them vintage, because as long as we're not talking gum, I like used things. My favorite's probably a very old, golden purse. Its small size reminds me of simpler times, with shorter people and no tablets to carry around.

The delicacy of my second-hand accessories often causes problems though. Numerous cases of broken shoulder straps, damaged zippers or ripped snakeskin (here come the tears again). Sure, it's great that my bags tell a story, but I'm starting to worry some of them might have been used as shields in World War I.

Enter Hanne Beutels, a young designer whose work pops up in my dreams ever since I discovered it at De Invasie a few years ago. She creates stunning pieces out of leather and fabrics from old coats, using her grandmother's sewing machine. The colors and shapes are timeless and the impeccable detailing guarantees many years of dragging fun.

I made a deal with myself: for every worn-out bag I throw away during spring cleaning, I can order a 'Hannedbag'. To fill the empty space in my drawer and in my heart. My boyfriend will be so happy.