I found Bea in a charity shop in Hythe. It took me some time finding the right handbag for this project and even after I took it away from the shelf of the charity shop, I wasn’t entirely sure. Two things later convinced me she is the perfect one and I then named her Bea. There was a white label tied to one of its handles, with the word ‘vintage’ handwritten on it. It looked old and I began to see a fine lady carrying it proudly in the crook of her elbow. The second thing ‘made’ it – there were two perfectly clean toothpicks inside the inner zipped pocket. This fine lady’s toothpicks are still there, in exactly the same place as when she first left them. It reminded me that my mum used to carry toothpicks in her handbag and offer to others in need after a meal!

I want to explore ‘her small world of affection’ (Kaufman 2011).