Learn it. Love it. (can’t) Live (without) it.

When you have a career that constantly keeps you “on the go”- meeting with clients, vendors and contractors, a trusty work tote becomes a necessity, for me it is out ranked only by my morning fix of caffeine. Over the years I’ve struggled with finding the perfect tote; trying many and loving few. When scouring the market for the latest and greatest in chic carry-alls there are a few key features at the top of my list.

The ultimate workbag must be:

  • Fashion forward. The best way to ensure you are always “in-style” is to choose a well-crafted carryall with a timeless shape and a color that can transition well from season to season. Wherever I go, my bag goes too. Which is why I need a professionally presentable bag, that is both polished and practical.
  • Speaking of practicality, the size of the bag itself and length of its straps are crucial components when assessing contenders. It has to be large enough to carry all the “essentials”, and the straps must be long enough that I am able to carry the bag on my arm. Recently, the weight of my supplies proved to be over 22 lbs, so I transitioned to a stylish rolling bag (see below) and fill it up without worry. I’ve found this bag also fits perfectly through the NYC subway turnstile so I can easily travel through public spaces on my way to my next stop.
  • Durable. As an interior designer I need a bag that is up for the challenge. It has to be strong enough for those moments where I find myself toting thirty pounds of tile samples and running to a presentation. There is no level of style nor number of compartments that can compensate for a workbag that doesn’t carry it’s weight (..and then some).


  • Screwdriver
  • Hammer, nails and other misc. hanging supplies
  • Lightbulbs
  • Measuring tape
  • Gorilla glue
  • Design book
  • Presentation boards
  • Samples (fabric, wood, tile, wall paper, paint, moldings, carpet, etc.)

Here is my Ultimate Workbag of choice and some of the essentials. It seems I can’t go anywhere without it!

Hilary Adorno