Dandy & Dapper
I travel on business more than most, but I still haven't found the most efficient way to pack light with a suit that won't arrive all wrinkled. I don't want to tote around a million bits and bobs.
Mr Dandy: Well, there's no need to show off about it to those of us who have to travel cattle class, now is there? Don't you people get extra-luggage allowance, pick-ups and all that jazz? Since you can obviously afford it, I'd say stick with every business traveller's best friend, Tumi. Take a look at the Alpha International Zippered Expandable Carry On 22020 (HK$5,480; Prince's Building, Central, tel: 2869 7488). It has a removable 'sleeve' that folds out and is made for hanging suits, and comes in black, espresso (brown), port (red) or willow (khaki). Other features include: optional monogram service, a zippered tie pocket and lots of other stuff you can see on the website (www.tumi.com). The case measurements are: 21.75 inches by 13.75 inches by 9.5 inches.
Mr Dapper: Excuse Dandy, dear reader. Not only has he misunderstood you meant you travel for business frequently, he's also from a generation that grew up with a misplaced sense of entitlement. He's rather put out by the idea that others travel farther up the plane, but doesn't realise he needs to work for it. For those of us who do, every saving counts, so I'd like to recommend an alternative that's more than HK$2,000 cheaper: the Samsonite Pro-DLX3. It's a carry-on wheeled bag that has a clip- in garment bag with a universal hanger, as well as a padded pocket for your laptop, and other convenient features. At Hop's Handbag (12 Li Yuen Street East, Central, tel: 2523 3888), the black version is going for only HK$3,260. See a full selection of Samsonite bags at one of its stores, such as the outlet in Man Yee Arcade, 68 Des Voeux Road, Central, tel: 2259 9348. Now, I don't think you really care about the exact measurements, so I'm not going to bother telling you anything other than it does comply with international regulations for carry-on sizing.
I'm about to give my girlfriend an old piece of family jewellery but, given it's not new, I don't have one of those bag things to put it in. Where on Earth does one buy such things without actually buying new jewels?
Mr Dapper: I can't tell if you're being incredibly generous or extreme- ly stingy. If you have gone through the agony of picking out new jewellery for a woman, and the jeweller will remember you, you could probably just go back there. They should just hand one over for free. In my years of experience with this torturous but necessary part of a love affair, it's best to develop a relationship with a jeweller early on. Then, you can almost go on autopilot, not have to shop around and, hopefully, get good deals. It also helps to have someone you trust when she needs repairs or resizing when she gets pregnant, etc.
Mr Dandy: Thanks, Dapper, with the mention of pregnancy, you might have just sent the poor guy running for the hills. We don't even know if they're already life partners, or if he's even ready to commit to this girl. (Although, ooh, if you are proposing, reader, then get creative with something literally out of the box, like a dim sum basket.) I'm guessing he's a novice, so I'll take this slow. An easy, good-looking option is the Shanghai Tang Double Fish Chinese brocade line of pouches, wallets and jewellery bags (HK$400 and up; 1881 Heritage, Tsim Sha Tsui, tel: 2368 2932), the only danger is you'll have to explain that the family heirloom is not from the brand. For the cheap you-know-whats, there's always Elegant Tang Dynasty, formerly Ribbon Emporium, which sells all sorts of multipack Chinese fabric pouches and jewellery bags for as little as HK$30 per five- piece package (9 Li Yuen Street East, Central, tel: 2167 8882). Other places that should have the goods: Chinese Arts & Crafts (59 Queen's Road Central, tel: 2901 0338) and Stanley Market.