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I need a new bag to use as a purse. :)

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    I need a new bag to use as a purse. :)

    I need to find a Tom Bihn bag to use as my main purse.

    I've been a student until graduating recently, and no longer use my Ristretto on a daily basis. It is by far my favorite bag I've ever owned in my entire life and I'm sad that I don't have cause to use it on a daily basis anymore. I love the way it is set up though and fully loaded with the Absolute Shoulder Strap, it's the most comfortable and ergonomic bag ever. The back pocket to quickly retrieve my phone, or keys, or whatever I decided to shove in there- just amazing, and the front curved zippered pocket to access my pens, hand sanitizer, chapstick- you name it- that pocket is designed so well I miss using it everyday. How nerdy is that?

    I thought that a Side Effect would make a nice daily purse, with the Clear Organizer Wallet and my keys on a strap safely inside, but it didn't work for me. The cube shape worn cross body style was awkward and it would bounce around and I was always consciously aware of it hanging from my body. Aesthetically it lacks the streamlined look I want, and I don't like bags that don't lay against my body like my Ristretto does so nicely. *I do use my Side Effect and love it, but I use it clipped into my Swift when I am going on knitting outings.

    And that leads me to my last Tom Bihn bag in my collection- my Swift. The natural choice for a purse one might assume, but it simply doesn't work for me. The rolled handles won't stay on my shoulder. It constantly gets bumped as I'm reaching, leaning, bending, and slips down my arm while I'm shopping, and it's shape is rather bloated looking for an everyday purse. (Because of course it's meant to be stuffed with yarn balls.) It's great for knitting, or grabbing to throw things in to spend the day at the lake, but not very practical for shopping, it shifts around too much and my money and keys even when strapped just end up diving down into the giant hole that is the interior of the Swift. I love my Nordic/Solar Swift and would never part with it, or my Stuff Sacks. Pure love and nothing equals them for what they are designed for- my knitting stuff and other stuff.

    So of my three current bags, after trying to use them for a purse have all failed. I am now thinking a small or medium Cafe Bag would serve me the best. The shape is similar to my Ristretto which of all my Tom Bihn bags is the most comfortable and sleek when moving about crowds or trying to shop. I tend to carry a keyring with two keys and a fob, a large cell phone, a book, a hairbrush, hand sanitizer, hand lotion, kleenex, pen, small notepad, and a wallet- sometimes my small Tom Bihn Clear Organizer wallet, and sometimes a regular bulky type one that holds a checkbook.

    If anyone else has faced this dilemma and seems to be as picky about ergonomics as me please weigh in. I would love to hear your feedback and how you solved the "purse problem" with a Tom Bihn bag.

    #2
    Why not continue using the Ristretto?

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      #3
      I think it's just a bit too big for an everyday bag, and feels a little strange since it has the girth to hold a laptop and a small binder, and those aren't things I am hauling around anymore. I have used it that way, but it was pretty much just holding keys, chapstick, hand sanitizer, and my clear organizer wallet. Probably splitting hairs at this point.

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        #4
        If the SE was large enough to hold the things you carry daily, then the SCB sounds perfect for you! If you want a little wiggle room, the MCB is great. While I've never had a Ristretto, the cafe bags have the similar stash pocket on the back (which often holds my wallet, phone, and keys for easy access), and the zippered pocket under the flap (which, to be honest, I rarely use).

        I currently use the MCB as a purse. Even when it's full to the brim, it's comfortable enough on my shoulder. It also sits nicely and doesn't bounce too much when walking, which is very important for me because I walk at least a mile with it every day. I often carry a book, at least one notebook, some cold weather gear (like gloves or a scarf), and a water or pop bottle, all of which would probably wouldn't fit so well in the SCB. You might consider ordering both to test pack if you're undecided.

        I also tried a SE but ended up passing that along to my grandma last month. And as much as I want to love shoulder bags, I also have the problem of the handles always slipping off my shoulder.
        kindness is contagious.

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          #5
          In my opinion, the SCB is the best purse. I personally find the MCB too big when used as a purse. That said, @bermudajes is correct that it won't fit a water bottle. But if the SE worked, I would think the SCB would. Here's a pic of what I carry in mine daily:

          Click image for larger version

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            #6
            Great suggestions. I am leaning toward ordering a SCB and going from there. I generally do tend toward not carrying much when I leave the house, but having options is always great. I have two teenage daughters and they use my Tom Bihn bags too.

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              #7
              It looks like the Cafe Bags would be perfect for you, indeed!

              What size is your Ristretto?

              My EDC went from a LCB to an SCB, I love them both, it looks like the SCB would work for you.

              I completely agree with you, before trying on a Cafe Bag, all kind of purses felt awkward, there is nothing like their north/south streamlined and capacious capability in the world.

              I love the SE but, it didn't work as an EDC purse, like you, I find it to be the most stylish accessory for the Swift.

              It can also double as a dressy occasion, evening purse.
              Last edited by backpack; 01-16-2015, 01:41 PM.

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                #8
                The Ristretto is just a smidgen bigger than the LCB. It's dimensions: 14.5" x 11.75" x 4.75"

                The color is the very hardest thing. Having a very hard time deciding. My other bags are Nordic/Solar. The Cocoa is appealing, the olive is too. Azure looks great and French blue.........mmmm.....So many pretty colors.

                Comment


                  #9
                  Originally posted by Dreamer View Post
                  The Ristretto is just a smidgen bigger than the LCB. It's dimensions: 14.5" x 11.75" x 4.75"

                  The color is the very hardest thing. Having a very hard time deciding. My other bags are Nordic/Solar. The Cocoa is appealing, the olive is too. Azure looks great and French blue.........mmmm.....So many pretty colors.
                  The SCB can be an EDC and the LCB an EDC Plus, the Plus being those annoying forms and paperwork one has to drag to the doctor offices or other similarly pleasant places.

                  The LCB is also nice, if one needs to keep documents for a presentation, a class, a lecture that contains handouts. The Large Pouch is perfect for keeping those handouts neat in the bag and out of it, even if the Large Pouch happens to slide out of one's lap.

                  I suppose you could use the Ristretto if you need the larger capacity.

                  Since you have daughters, get a rainbow of SBCs so that everyone can have one for each wardrobe color palette of the 4 seasons.

                  Have fun deciding on the color!

                  Comment


                    #10
                    I use a SCB as my purse and love it! I posted some pictures of mine in an earlier post http://forums.tombihn.com/questions-...html#post59510 (post #3).

                    Comment


                      #11
                      Originally posted by hamiltee View Post
                      I use a SCB as my purse and love it! I posted some pictures of mine in an earlier post http://forums.tombihn.com/questions-...html#post59510 (post #3).
                      I love your bag. I ended up getting a black/steel SCB and spent a good hour slowly transferring over all of my purse contents and figuring out what should go where. It's amazing and perfect. I want more. Haha!

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