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bag fetish

so, sometimes i am kind of anal about shopping. and i like to compare, although i don't always do this. and i am also fond of tables. so here is my table about bag comparison shopping. it's an exercise in online shopping, since i know that one cannot find all these bags in one place and fondle them, put your crap in them, see how they feel. if you know about a bag that you think is missing from this list, let me know! god i love bags. and yes, it is hella slow at work tonight. as you can see, $=0-40, $$=40-60, and $$$=60+. bags i left off this list: Dickies' Basic Messenger Bag because cool as it is, I've seen them in person and they are nothing to write home about. They may be your only choice in plaid, however. I also left off anything by JanSport. If I wanted a crappy k-mart bag that would fall apart, well... yeah.

Crumpler Roll-o-Notes Messenger Bag* $$$
wide variety flap clips down
main pocket no zip
website is snarky but has plenty of pics including x-ray inside after staring at it enough, i'm not so fond of the aesthetics and the website is too "ooh we are so cool", but hey - third leg stabilizer! and clearly made for a laptop. which i don't have.
Clive "Traffic" Sling Bag $$
black, navy, or camo velcro website has no inside pics but isn't as broken as some others! seems a little puffy looking but otherwise a frontrunner as aestehtics go. the website doesn't list it, but they also make a bag called "go" that i like.
Land's End Canvas Courier $
12 colors! flap clips down
main pocket no zip
website suitably helpful, although they should offer a color change picture if they want to keep up with ll bean. obviously it will hold all my junk, but will it keep its shape? i already have a canvas bean briefcase. pfeh.
Bucket Boss Messenger Bag $
black w/red panel only velcro and clips website acceptable. would like a bigger version of picture. hugest bag on the list. probably will be its undoing, not to mention i already bought a bag from this company that disappointed me. (sorry rob!!) it does have 3,435 cool straps and loops though.
Eagle Creek Sling Bag $
black, sage, chino, steel magnets!!! site does not actually sell the product directly. only a few selected retailers have it. their new bags are ugly. smallest bag on the list. i have seen this bag in person and it's nice, but will it fit all my junk? trade paperbacks?
Chrome Sling Bag $$$
black only says velcro, but i don't see it i can't actually find a web site for this company i am most attracted to this bag. might be too big though. looks like it would hold its shape and not be bulgy.
L.L. Bean Heatwave Messenger Bag $$
5 colors, but all have goofy white stripe they don't even tell you. lame. nice close up, no inside shot, but i know llbean and i know they have a good online purchase mechanism. screw you llbean and your stupid white stripey thing. and your stupidly long URL.
Timbuk2 PeeWee Messenger $$$
build your own!!! clippy thing I LOVE THIS WEBSITE. bag builder!! it appeals to the kid in me. note the "how to wear" picture! did i mention, build your own? and the logo is graphically unobtrusive? and you can choose the color of that too? and for you lefties, they offer a left-hand version for free? whoah.

* - Crumpler also makes rockin' camera bags that might make better purses than purses do.



( 28 comments — Leave a comment )
Jul. 22nd, 2003 03:59 am (UTC)
personally, i really like the timbuk2 - i like the whole idea of design your own and the bags are cute. i know some folks who have them; i'll see if i can get a "consumer report" for ya.
Jul. 22nd, 2003 04:32 am (UTC)
This may seem an odd suggestion, but look at Samsonite. They make much more than luggage these days, and their stuff is generally exceptionally high quality.

Heh, and no offense re: the contractors bag. As much as I love mine, it does suffer from being pretty much what it was designed to be - something to take regular sized things and tools to a jobsite, not a tote-around.

SO are you just looking for a general purpoe, toss stuff in bag of the Israeli Paratrooper family, or are you considering branching out? One strap backpacks are getting more practical these days.
Jul. 22nd, 2003 11:13 pm (UTC)
samsonite: checking. i don't think "hip" when i think samsonite, though. hipness has become one of my criteria, vaguely.

contractor's bag: it would have been fine if 1) some stictching had not ome loose and 2) i kind of expect something with a rectangular base that is not topheavy to be able to stand up when i set it down, this may be an unreasonab le expectation in this case, but every time that thing fell over it just got me more frustrated. so i'll chalk that up to, bag too structured.

i don't know anything about the isreali paratrooper family of bags, but i'd love to understand your reference. i'm looking for alot of things... something that's a purse but still can carry enough stuff, but still be attractive and sophisticated. if i listed out the whole list of qualifiers, i think it might take me days and days. :) i would make a whole seperate post about bag needs, but i'm not in the mood tonight.
Jul. 23rd, 2003 06:31 am (UTC)
Israeli Paratrooper bag is the basic design behhind most modern satchels. Shoulder strap, big compartment with a divider, smaller outer compartment, and loops for bullets (which hold pens very well). They got thrust into the limelight for a little while durring the late 80's when Banana Republic started carrying them. Thankfully, they have returned to whether they belong, and can be acquired at most any Army Navy place, usually in khaki, Olive or Black.

Pros: They're durable, cool looking, and Cheap (under $20)

Cons: They're army-navy stuff, so expect metal clasps and a lack of super-ergnometric padding.

If you are looking fo rbags and have not at least poked around an army-navy store (not just for these, but for a whole host of stuff), you are doing yourself a disservice.

(and as an aside: Busted seams! Eee! I hope you called up the company and ripped them a new one?)
Jul. 24th, 2003 12:41 am (UTC)
i have poked around a few army-navy stores, but my favorite one is in norfolk and i have NO idea when i'm gonna get down there. one of my (8 bzillion) requirements is ergonomics... i'm tired of having one shoulder or the other hurt.

also i have like 4 big canvas military looking bags already. ;) (which probably means i DON'T NEED TO SHOP FOR A BAG, but...)

it wasn't a totally busted seam, maybe i overstated that - some stitching came loose near the handle, it has not effected the performance of the bag really.
(Deleted comment)
Jul. 22nd, 2003 11:13 pm (UTC)
do they still make it? they didn't seem to have anything that fit my aesthetic desires.
Jul. 22nd, 2003 05:10 am (UTC)
If you go to a bike supply store you can "try on" the Timbuk2 bag. That's what Rich and I did on Saturday. It was very cool, but I'm concerned it's a little too big for my "mega-purse" needs. For a toting stuff around town bag, though, it can't be beat. I really want to get one of the graphic ones but they're almost twice the price. The boob strap that the girl models is actually VERY comfy.
Jul. 22nd, 2003 11:16 pm (UTC)
supposedly the REI in college park has them... i might go by there if i am awake during business hours sometime.

i'm worried about that too big thing. were you looking at the peewee size? i want a mega-purse that is not so mega, you know, so that when you hang it on the back of a chair at a restaurant, it doesn't overturn the whole chair. i know, that has more to do with all the crap i carry, but really, i want a megapurse that's more... understated. you know?
Jul. 23rd, 2003 04:54 am (UTC)
I'm totally there with you. I looked at the classic messenger bag in the store and its the same size as the peewee. It's way bigger than what I would like. I'd like to shrink it by about 40% or so. Like these bags are more like those over the shoulder bookbags. And my tendency is to fill one of these things to capacity. The Timbuk2 bag was stylish and WAY comfortable, but I'm terrified that once I put my stuff in it, it will be floppy if only half full or drag behind me like an albatross if full. Definitely a restaurant chair toppler.
Jul. 24th, 2003 12:51 am (UTC)
I think there might be some confusion - the classic comes in four sizes, one of which is peewee. ? Well anyhoo, the bag I'm carrying right now is the perfect size to carry all my stuff, but it doesn't close well (as in, stuff could fall out) and it's a little awkward for books, AND while I thought in the store it would look ultra hip, it ends up losing its shape and looking like a MOM PURSE, which as you know is the last thing you want.

I too have the tendency to fill to capacity. Right now however, because I don't have a Palm Phone and won't be getting one in the forseeable future, I have several large "staples" to contend with:

Stereo face (by far the largest and most annoying component I so regret my choice)
Checkbook pouch
Ziploc bag o' toiletries
optional: trade paperback (lately I have just been carrying that in my hand, very inconvenient.)
everything else: small enough not to mention.

So... see where I am?
Jul. 22nd, 2003 06:48 am (UTC)
Have you checked out www.ebags.com? I found my work bag there and it's holding up pretty well. The site's nicely searchable, too.
Jul. 22nd, 2003 07:32 am (UTC)
Seconded. Possibly the single coolest store on the web (if you;re a freak, like me).
Jul. 22nd, 2003 11:19 pm (UTC)
hehe... that's where i found most of these! :) i just prefer linking to the manufacturer sites, they usually have a more detailed desc. ebags appears to be affiliated with amazon, which would certainly make ordering easier...
Jul. 22nd, 2003 07:55 am (UTC)
my friends love their timbuk2 bags, though they say "Get the cinch straps on the bottom of the bag or you'll wish you did." not sure if this applies to the one you are looking at or not.
Jul. 22nd, 2003 11:21 pm (UTC)
hmmm i didn't see a cinch strap option. this bag looks like it is totally winning though. :)
Jul. 22nd, 2003 09:11 am (UTC)
My courier bag is from LL Bean and is quite durable. That and one time I broke the shoulder strap and called customer service and they sent me a replacement strap for free.
Jul. 22nd, 2003 11:22 pm (UTC)
that's the big thing about bean... and i have both a backpack AND a briefcasey-thing from them. but (shallowly) i don't like the way their bag looks. lame, eh?
Jul. 22nd, 2003 09:42 am (UTC)
Not that I really care or anything, but...
I have a JanSport bag I got in 1995. It's still in great shape, and I used it in grad school plus carried big ass law school books around in it for 3 years.


Jul. 22nd, 2003 11:22 pm (UTC)
huh... i always associated them with shoddy work! i am happy to hear the opposite. :)
Jul. 22nd, 2003 10:21 am (UTC)
I have to say, the Timbuk2 mess bag I couriered with for three years in the early nineties is still my trusty adventure bag. It's rugged, handy, durable, and old-skool, y0. I would take it over one-of-eveything-else.
Jul. 22nd, 2003 11:23 pm (UTC)
yay! more good news. do you know what their policy is about if something goes wrong with it? i should look that up.
Jul. 23rd, 2003 12:48 pm (UTC)
I don't know! I've never heard of anything going wrong with one. Then again, I didn't know they had a "build your own bag" thing, either.
Jul. 22nd, 2003 11:31 am (UTC)
One day, I will hire you to be my very own personal shopper. Yes, I will.
Jul. 22nd, 2003 11:24 pm (UTC)
overnight shift is very, very conducive to online comparison shopping... i also really enjoy getting out and hitting the pavement and seeing things in person but who has time? :)
Jul. 22nd, 2003 07:55 pm (UTC)
Clive bags are goody sturdy bags.
Jul. 22nd, 2003 11:24 pm (UTC)
awesome - thanks for the tip.
Jul. 23rd, 2003 12:41 am (UTC)
you should scrap the whole thing and go with a kompressor messenger bag instead. that's my vote.
Jul. 23rd, 2003 02:04 pm (UTC)
You know, that's a darn good idea.
( 28 comments — Leave a comment )


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