Thursday, August 20, 2009

Favorite Messenger Bag: Rickshaw Bagworks found in Paradise Garage

Rickshaw Bagworks messenger bagsWhen I first got my Mac Powerbook G4 just before I officially started Katie James back in 2005ish, I treated it to a pink carry case from Casauri that I found in Kate's Paperie. It served me well for years, but the pink took dirt in between the nylon that I couldn't scrub out, and a mysterious blanch spot appeared on my monitor's pixels that I blame on things pressing down on the laptop monitor while I'm carrying the bag or putting it into bigger bag with other things.

Now that Katie James has gone digital with Katie James Pixelated, I'm on the computer all of the time, and traveling more to meetings or to 'vacations' where I work during the day, and stop for dinner with whatever family I am with. This means lots of trips to Panera with lots of cords for phone and computer, my Griffin elevator (a raised surface for my laptop), notebook, folder of current scraps of paper notes, etc. So I usually carry two bags at minimum to contain this maddness.

Then I had to buy a new Mac, and I wanted to start things off right. I wanted a mini-office on my shoulder. And I wanted to ride my bike with it if I wanted to. Enter Columbus bike stores. I am addicted to them. I seem to buy all of my clothes from them. Paradise Garage is my current favorite, and when I asked about messenger bags, they passionately presented me with the Rickshaw Bagworks line, out of San Fransisco.

The messenger bag had all that I was looking for:
  • a framed structure so that I could place things in the middle of the bag that would not smush up against the laptop
  • a separate pocket for the laptop
  • front pockets for other stuff like cords, external harddrives, lip gloss...
  • big front pocket that folds over, and has magnet strips if you don't feel like buckling it (this might be revelutionery for actual bike messengers b/c it replace the velcro that can be noisy when they enter offices, but the Rickshaw Bagworks bag also offers the velcro opportunity under the magnets)
  • cool color combos.
I would change two things about this bag:
  • better placement of pockets for cell phones and little things. This bag may have been designed with men in mind, and men may not be as into pockets as women are. I want an easy place for my cell phone and metro card on the outside of the bag.
  • the magnetic strips are cool for lazy days, but if you don't buckle it, the straps hang, and that's not very neat and tidy.
But these thoughts on improvement are not a deal breaker. I am SO happy with this bag. I don't have to carry two bags anymore, and packing it now is like clockwork. I ended up buying it from Paradise Garage to reward the brick and mortar store for their great find (keep retail stores alive!), but you can also find more styles on Rickshaw's website. Actually, I don't see mine on their website (brown with pink trim), so shop around!

Pink Rickshaw messenger bag

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