As so many crushes do, my crush on the smaller of the two sizes of the J.Crew Bucket Bag ended when I got to know it better.
First the good: I still love the color - I got it in the tan or tannish shade, and it is delightfully neutral, hasn't turned pink in daylight or orange-yellow in evening light. So it goes with almost everything, colorwise, that is, it's not a dressy bag. It's nicely made, no major complaints with stitching, no noticeable flaws in the leather. Surface is textured, minimizing possibility of scratches. And I got it in the smaller of its two sizes, but it still holds a lot. Finally, it's not heavy when empty.
The just OK: the strap is a non-adjustable shoulder strap. After a day of errands, I caught sight of myself in a mirror and understood the reason I felt so tired and irritated: I'd been walking with one shoulder hunched seriously higher than the other all day. Had I focused on self earlier, I would have figured this out before the crick in the neck set in. I can't see how to shorten the strap without spending way too much for what I'd have when the project was done, either.
Don't like: this is my first experience since 10th grade with a bag that has depth. It has not been a happy few days. I like an organized bag, and if you do, too, this is not for you. There are also security issues, because the top is open. I know, I know, that's the style, and I should have known better.... A cute little clasp brings the top edges together, but the bag doesn't really close. Even with the clasp doing its best, I had to put a seatbelt on the bag to prevent my daily life from spilling out all over the car during normal driving. Normal driving out at Flintstone Manor does include a few swerves to avoid cars driven by people who believe their entitlement to the road outranks mine, but still... There's one zip pocket and two open pockets in the lining, but with an open top, they're not much help.
Conclusion: I'm keeping it, because it's sporty and summery, but I'm annoyed with myself because despite my very best intentions I have wound up with still another bag of very limited usefulness.
Update: My friend KnitYarns asked why getting the bag altered is such a big deal. Ooh, lots of reasons - everything costs more around here, and although I got the bag on promo, I still paid more than I would have had I waited, so I don't feel like investing any more in it. And here's why I don't want to take it into any old shoe repair guy:
On each end, the insert connects to a thinner strap, which is fixed closed with a rivet or grommet (or both?) assembly, as well as stitched shut.
The little tab on the bag that holds the loop can't be fussed with.
That leaves the non-insert end of each thin strap.
And another grommety-rivety thing ... Oh, well.