Posted in Doing

A Thing Of Beauty Is A Joy For Never


Every once and a while, you find or buy something that you not only want but you need. You use it every day and love it and then eventually you kind of forget about it and put it in a cupboard and every so often, you’ll rediscover it and so the cycle of adoration begins again.

When I was living in Thailand 3 years ago, one day I stumbled upon a little corner of Chatuchak market in Bangkok I hadn’t been to before. It was a little alley filled with traditional crafts, but the real authentic stuff, not the mass-produced tourist stuff you find everywhere. I found a little tiny, narrow stand with the most amazing handbags made from vintage tribal materials and fell in love with this bag, above.

It’s a thing of beauty, no? The colours are right up my alley and the leather handles smelt divine. It was a big rectangle of fabric, lined, with little poppers added to the corners to make it into a neat envelope shape. It was truly beautiful and even my Thai friends were in awe of it.

Cutting a long, miserable story short, when I moved back to the UK, it got stolen along with a whole bunch of other things, from my possessions which I had to ship back cargo. And ever since, I have been trying to find a replacement. I have tried asking Thai friends, friends of friends who are visiting Bangkok, providing them with detailed maps and directions to the stall I bought it from, but frustratingly, I haven’t been able to get them to the right spot.

I’ve also spent numerous hours scouring the internet for something like it. I’ve come close to finding something a few times but nothing really hits the spot. I’ve tried contacting some sellers on Etsy who have similar but not quite bags and await their responses.

The desire to replace this handbag has gone past just being a desire. It’s a need. It reminds me of such amazing times – exciting, funny, scary, sad times, all at once – and I really, really, really want it back. Or one to replace it.

So, if you have a visit to Thailand planned soon, know someone who lives there or perhaps you’re sitting on a seller of these, please get in touch. Perhaps you are the horrible, horrible person who rifled through my belongings and took what they fancied – please, get in touch! I’m willing to take just the bag back, you can keep the hundreds of pounds worth of other stuff, just give me back my beautiful bag!

UPDATE: I may have found someone in Thailand to make a replacement for me! Watch this space.



I’m Claire and I live near Glasgow, in Scotland. I have strong family ties to Cincinnati, too and regard it as my second home. If I had to describe myself in five words, it would be thus: Does. Not. Suffer. Fools. Gladly. I’ve been cross stitching pretty much all my life, but professionally since 2005, first as Miso Funky, then as The Bellwether and now under my own name. I'm known for my witty, sarcastic and occasionally profane typographic designs. My work has been featured in The Sunday Times, The Guardian, Channel 4 and on BBC television as well as numerous media outlets across the globe. At one point, I was kind of a big deal but I mostly just dabble in it these days when I have time. My website is a repositry of cross stitch charts, travel and food blogging and you'll find it at I also love to travel and eat, ideally travelling somewhere great to eat something brilliant. I'm fascinated by social history, particularly the Victorians and will absolutely beat you hands down in a quiz about the Tudors. Dogs are LIFE. I like being in water and have lots of ideas that will never see the light of day but would definitely be a winner on Dragon’s Den/Shark Tank. I love to give people gifts. I! also! overuse! exclamation! marks! sorry!

2 thoughts on “A Thing Of Beauty Is A Joy For Never

  1. It is, though I initially wrongly attributed it to Karen hill tribe on Flickr. Hmong textiles are glorious on the screen, incredible in the flesh. I cried actual tears over losing this bag!


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