Q & A – What’s In Sharlene’s Handbag?

Photo Wayne Martin

Every executive knows a day at the office is likely to bring a multitude of tasks and requests.

On the other hand every woman knows there’s one accessory she just must have especially if she is that executive dealing with business demands.

That’s why Waiuku Town Centre manager Sharlene Druyven, (born and bred in the district), can’t do without her handbag which is likely to contain many little extras which make taking care of business a breeze. “And, of course, a few things that have nothing to do with business,” she laughs.

With that reply we just had to ask her:


What’s in your handbag Sharlene?

Well, if you asked my husband what’s in my bag he would say, ‘everything’. But come on, there are some necessities a lady needs in order to operate – phone, wallet, pen, diary, tissues, hair brush, deodorant, business cards, snack, water bottle, lip balm, hairclip and glasses to name a few!

Do you have a favourite style?

I have never really been into fashion and prefer the casual approach to be honest. A bag is a bag, isn’t it?

Black, white or tan bags seem to go with everything so that tends to be the colours to which I gravitate.

Do you prefer a small or large bag?

My bags are all small to medium in size. The thought of a large bag would just do my head in. I can’t tell you the amount of times I have had my belongings sprawled out in the carpark, on the car bonnet or over the front seat of my car because my phone is buzzing and I can’t find it. Having a bigger bag would just drive me crazy.

What items are likely to be found in your bag at any one time (and/or at any special time) – normal or otherwise?

Embarrassingly, I have found the occasional old dog treat that I used to have in my bag when I was a puppy walker for the Blind Foundation, a bag of almonds for the weeks when I decide that healthy eating is the way to go, some 50 loose tissues floating around , my wallet, phone, keys, lunch box, bottle of water.

What can’t you leave home without having in your bag?

My wallet and phone. That’s not to say that I haven’t, on occasion, gone out thinking they were in there only to find I had left them at home on the bench or on the charger.

What’s in there that you don’t really need?

I think I could miss the dog biscuits seeing as I’ve been without a dog for six months! A couple of tissues might suffice instead of the other 48 drifting through the bag – I have a terrible habit of pulling a couple out of the box on the dresser as I’m shooting out the door. Before you know it, the bag is full of loose tissues.

What’s the most embarrassing/ funny thing to fall out of your bag?

I have had some doozies but would prefer not to print publically. I think many of us have, at some time or another, had the occasional mishap.

An afterthought!

While writing this article I’m noticing this bag and its separate compartments is specifically designed to make the handbag a more user-friendly fashion accessory. I have to wonder why I’ve failed to use the compartments more effectively. New resolution – become compartmentalised! Also, we’ve all heard people say – especially men – that women carry everything but the kitchen sink in their bags. Yet how often has someone mislaid or forgotten an item only for a woman to shout, ‘Hallelujah – I’ve got one in my handbag!” Enough said.