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  1. #1
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    The utility tote goes Christmas shopping!

    Wow, we are impressed. We got a brain bag and brain cell for my husband, and for myself I got a small cafe bag and a utility tote. And we got an assortment of organiser pouches.

    My husband then sprained his knee and is hobbling around with a knee brace, so the task of carrying everything we bought at the market for Christmas fell to me and the utility tote.

    I'm happy to report that it holds:

    2 kg (5 pounds) box of cherries
    Large fresh turkey breast
    2.5 kg (6 pounds) of chocolate buttons
    Another .5 kg (1 pound) of different chocolate buttons
    A frozen lasagna
    2 glass pint bottles of milk
    and a 10 gram jar of saffron!

    And I still had room!

    Despite weighing about 20 pounds it was very comfortable on my shoulder. And I normally struggle with a 10 pound carry on bag with an ordinary webbing strap.

    Audrey

  2. #2
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    I must agree that the utility totes are great! I have been using one for several years and I just purchased two more (one each for my two children). The addition of the inner zippered pocket is great for small items that you don't want to lose. My kids go back and forth to their mom's house once a week and that zippered pouch is perfect for medicine and such things.

  3. #3
    TOM BIHN Crew (we work here) Darcy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by falconea View Post

    I'm happy to report that it holds:

    2 kg (5 pounds) box of cherries
    Large fresh turkey breast
    2.5 kg (6 pounds) of chocolate buttons
    Another .5 kg (1 pound) of different chocolate buttons
    A frozen lasagna
    2 glass pint bottles of milk
    and a 10 gram jar of saffron!

    And I still had room!
    Wow!! I want to go to your house for dinner.
    Current Carry: Founder's Briefcase (every day carry), Small Cafe Bag (every day carry), Shop Bags (groceries, extra random stuff), Aeronaut 45 (travel), Synapse 19 (day hikes), Smart Alec (longer day hikes), Skookum Dog Road Duffel (Medium) (travel), Clear Organizer Wallet, Travel Stuff Sacks, Organizer Cubes

  4. #4
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    Utility Tote

    Wow! That's a lot of stuff. Thanks, you helped me decide utility tote vs Lux. Now for color! What color did you get? I wish all the color photos for the tote showed the bag, rather than showing just a close up of the colors. It's really hard for me to envision what they would look like on the bag!

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heidi Jill View Post
    Wow! That's a lot of stuff. Thanks, you helped me decide utility tote vs Lux. Now for color! What color did you get? I wish all the color photos for the tote showed the bag, rather than showing just a close up of the colors. It's really hard for me to envision what they would look like on the bag!
    Do the pictures in this thread help at all? A user named "just" added some good pictures of the bags. In fact, if not for those pictures I might never have considered the Coco color. For some reason it looks really good to me in those pictures but not when left alone on the product page.

  6. #6
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    Smile

    Thanks for the cool link! It didn't really help me with the utility tote, but I really enjoyed seeing all those bags! I think I am just going to go to the store and see the colors in person.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heidi Jill View Post
    Thanks for the cool link! It didn't really help me with the utility tote, but I really enjoyed seeing all those bags! I think I am just going to go to the store and see the colors in person.
    Aww, that's just wrong. You can go to the store? I'm so jealous.

    I still kick myself because I was in Seattle on business this time last year but I didn't know about Tom Bihn. I know Riley is probably still mad that I didn't visit.

  8. #8
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    get the Utility Tote

    Heidi, I vote get the utility tote for most kinds of shopping. Lux only if you want to buy books or bottles. Or perhaps if you see there's only one color left and have to have it.

    I have both. The Lux being stiffer stands open on its own. This helps if you are filling it with a stack of books, or maybe wine bottles. Two things I'm not crazy about are 1) there is a zipper on the bottom that doesn't match any accessories and 2) the angled sides which probably help keep it open can allow some things to fall out. I mean the effective height of the fully enclosed space is lower.

    The Utility Tote holds more and is more comfortable to carry, partly because the material is softer. I ordered the Lux first because it looked like the handles would be roomier over my shoulder, but the UT is fine unless you plan to wear a lot of down parkas. Because the sides come up higher, it feels more secure too. The side pockets are handy, and the Lux doesn't have them. The interior pocket is also more flexible. I like the UT better for general running about town, too, and find myself using it everyday.

    Just my opinion but gives you some things to think about when you see them. You might also look at the Swift, which incorporates some of the advantages of the UT.

  9. #9
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    Thanks, Wildgeese! I'm pretty sure I'll go with the UT, but I will also be taking a close look at the Swift for my fibery stuff (knitting, spinning, etc.) Thanks for mentioning the zipper at the bottom of the Lux - that could cause a problem with some of the crafty stuff I would be tossing into the bag.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by Darcy View Post
    Wow!! I want to go to your house for dinner.
    Darcy,

    You're welcome any time you're in Australia! On the subject of being in Australia and therefore a long way away from the rest of the world - we're planning and booking our grand world tour and it will take us to Seattle on Friday 30 January 2009. We land at lunchtime and depart straight after breakfast the next day. The only thing we know of to do in Seattle is visit you. :+> (It's a long story - we have a fare that gives us 6 flights and we want to earn the miles for all 6 flights but don't have the time to actually see much of the USA. So we're travelling from New York to Washington DC the long way - via Dallas, Seattle and Chicago!) We're hoping that the retail store will be open on this day!


    We took the Utility Tote on our regular grocery shopping, and handed it to the checkout girl to load. She loaded in a usual bagload, looked in and looked surprised at the amount of space still left and kept loading in more and more, looking more and more astonished. I'm sure she thought we had a magic bag that dumped everything into another dimension! Anyway, it held about half of our weekly shopping.

    Since Australia is going to ban plastic grocery bags later this year we've decided to get ourselves more Utility Totes. We'll pick them up next January when we're there. :+>

    Audrey

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Heidi Jill View Post
    Wow! That's a lot of stuff. Thanks, you helped me decide utility tote vs Lux. Now for color! What color did you get? I wish all the color photos for the tote showed the bag, rather than showing just a close up of the colors. It's really hard for me to envision what they would look like on the bag!
    Kelly Green and Navy. It's a nice combination, but since the webbing pocket and handle is black it is effectively 3 colours.

    I like it, especially since green is my favourite colour. :+> When I get more I'll be getting different colours just for the fun of it.

    Audrey

  12. #12
    TOM BIHN Crew (we work here) Darcy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by falconea View Post
    On the subject of being in Australia and therefore a long way away from the rest of the world - we're planning and booking our grand world tour and it will take us to Seattle on Friday 30 January 2009.
    We should be open that day. Make sure to call us and we will make sure we are there! That will be way fun.
    Current Carry: Founder's Briefcase (every day carry), Small Cafe Bag (every day carry), Shop Bags (groceries, extra random stuff), Aeronaut 45 (travel), Synapse 19 (day hikes), Smart Alec (longer day hikes), Skookum Dog Road Duffel (Medium) (travel), Clear Organizer Wallet, Travel Stuff Sacks, Organizer Cubes

  13. #13
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    .

    Since Australia is going to ban plastic grocery bags later this year we've decided to get ourselves more Utility Totes.


    Way to go Australia! I've read that China is doing the same. Wish that would happen here in the US. I know some cities have done so (San Francisco comes to mind) but can you imagine the difference it would make if the whole country did it? Maybe I should start small - how about Washington State!

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by falconea View Post
    Kelly Green and Navy. It's a nice combination, but since the webbing pocket and handle is black it is effectively 3 colours.

    I like it, especially since green is my favourite colour. :+> When I get more I'll be getting different colours just for the fun of it.

    Audrey
    That's the one I am thinking of as green is one of my favorites. I like that it actually comes out 3 colors! I am going to get to the store, either this week or the first week in February. Can't wait!

  15. #15
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    BTW, as a starting point, to learn more about Australia click http://www.abc.net.au/ra/
    Tom Welch > Mesa, Arizona, USA
    Author of 101 Financial Ratios 5.0
    Travel Lite & Smart


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