Why Does the Queen Always Carry a Purse

While many finished The Crown searching for Princess Diana documentaries, I found myself poking around the internet to find out more about the box bag that the Queen always has by her side, my curiosity on high. Her Majesty is devotee of the brand Launer and The Crown stays true to history featuring her favorite styles from the British heritage brand, the Traviata and the Bellini. Fun fact: Margaret Thatcher also had a penchant for the impeccably crafted Launer bags, but she was most photographed carrying the Olympia style. From my research, it turns out the Queen often uses her purse as a signal to the people around her that she’s ready to leave one place and head to another. Grab the bag and it’s time to go. Some sites even go as far as to speculate on my most important query: the contents. Apparently, Her Majesty carries around some mix of a compact, a lipstick, some tissues, mints, corgi treats, reading glasses, a diary and a fountain pen – all useful things no matter where one is. All the articles I saw remark emphatically, in varying ways, that the Queen would never go anywhere without her handbag.

So, I’ve decided to give it a try. Why not? I’ve always been fond of a timeless, top-handle bag and so I pulled out my more pint-to-medium sized ladylike options, which had been gathering a bit of dust since I started hunkering down at-home last March. I settled on an off-white, lizard embossed Little Liffner minimalist mini tote that would normally be a great not-too-fancy-but-certainly-brought-out-for-some-sort-of-occasion bag. To be honest, I’ve actually found it quite useful to have my lip balm and glasses (to borrow a couple items from the Queen’s list) in one reliable place instead of haphazardly placed around my apartment. I also added my credit card, which I am constantly leaving in the pocket of my pants or jackets, a hair tie, and some hand cream to combat the hand sanitizer that lives in my XL grocery shopping carryall. Of course, I also really can’t wait to try to use it as a signal that I’m about to leave, even if it’s just a wave of top handle to sign out of a Zoom meeting.

As much as a bag is about function, it’s also just about investing in the kind of fashion that sparks joy. It’s the little things these days, right? Having a bag next to me while I’ve worked from home these last couple days has not only been helpful but also a bit soothing–a pretty object that I fell immediately back into reaching for as if the reflex had just returned from vacation. I can understand why a woman who is constantly being watched by those around her would also want to have this kind of prop as something to hold, move, use. Plus, when they are only for short trips indoors, the possibilities are endless. Personally, now that I’ve practiced with it, I’m not letting myself be afraid of white leather anymore–a material I certainly wouldn’t have allowed myself in the wild before. I won’t be carrying around any fountain pens, though. That seems like something only an incredibly graceful woman, or Queen, could get away with without tempting fate.

Shop my favorite royal-inspired purses below – for home and beyond.

Little Liffner minimal mini tote in light beige lizard

Launer Traviata leather top handle bag

Hunting Season small top handle leather shoulder bag

By Far mini croc emossed leather top handle bag

Tory Burch Lee Radziwill small bag

Gucci Jackie 1961 mini hobo bag

Simon Miller mini retro bag

Staud Jackie bag in ivy croc embossed

Oroton Hazel mini frame bag

Khaite Agnes small leather tote

Mark Cross small grace box bag

Il Bisonte structured leather satchel bag

Roger Vivier Beau strass buckle micro bag

3.1 Phillip Lim Alix mini top handle satchel

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