After doing duty during the harsh Winter, every Girl's constant companion, the humble hand-bag (the one big enough to carry round that mountain of cold-weather essentials, umbrella et al) is likely to be a little worse for wear. So it's time to give your trusty side-kick a seasonal break and wrap your fingers around a new flirty friend.
This season's styles are bright and playful, with a flutter of florals and some retro-classic looks making an unexpected yet welcome comeback. It our hunt for the hottest new hand-helds we came across a real gem.
Local designer Sam Cross, creates a range of beautiful bags under the label Cloth Magpie. From a fine art background, Miss Cross is passionate about vintage materials and the idea behind her range of unique (not to mention exclusive) pieces is to create a few timeless and creative designs that can then be clothed in the buyers choice of vintage fabric from the collection she's amassed over the years.
Only a few bags are made in each fabric (the number depends on how much of that particular print she has) and with fans of her highly collectable clutches quickly growing thanks to attention in such high profile style spreads as Vogue it won't be long before demand far outstrips supply! So make sure you get your chance to grab a true local fashion statement.
Our favourite from the current season has to be the over-sized bobble-kiss purse in China Blue Rose which practically screams Springtime (right, £88). You can reserve your bag via her website (http://www.samcross.co.uk/collection.html) or track down one of the lucky stockists in the region, which include Cuckoo at Burwash Manor Barton who have managed to secure a few pieces for themselves.
Other adorable accessories that have caught our eye this week include the fantastic new range of Radley bags, especially the lovely watercolour inspired Westward large scoop shoulder bag (left, £165) which is simply too good to ever put down. Radley bags can be found at branches of Debenhams as well as independent stockists including Marrs Leather in Cambridge.