This is my first post about my first Tom Bihn product! To preface this, I've never been good at fashion, despite the fact I live in Dallas, Texas and have spent most of my life surrounded by fashion-conscious people whose tastes and interests you would think I would have at least partially absorbed. I think I lack the gene that allows me to find fashion fun. Fashion trends are about as interesting as carburetors to me. To make things worse, I also have an obsessive interest in clever travel supplies, and have lately been on a mission to downsize everything I own. (I've been out of the country twice in the past 6 months, with a carry-on only, everything in my bag meticulously miniaturized). My husband quietly tolerates my obsessions, but we've been together for so long that maybe he just sees it as an illness.
I ended up ordering my very first Tom Bihn product this morning: an aubergine/wasabi Side Effect. This was to combat a problem I've been having for months since I started having to lug a spine-crushing 25 lbs of laptops, tablets and gear to the office every day (I use an ebags TLS Mother Lode Jr for that purpose, and I like everything about that bag, except how much I am forced to carry in it).
My problem is that I had stopped carrying a regular purse altogether, since I didn't want to haul around a second bag, or stow it in my already-full backpack. My attempts to downsize/lighten my "purse" have been compete fashion failures: a few times I used a vinyl lunch bag, just so I'd have a container for my personal stuff, and my latest "purse" has been a chicobag grocery bag. My coworkers shake their heads in pity when they watch me go out for lunch carrying my personal effects in whatever random lightweight container I happen to have brought that day. In the winter, this was not a problem according to me, because I carried all my daily detritus in the many pockets of my Scottevest trench coat. Most of my friends considered my Scottevest to be the biggest fashion disaster of all, although I thought it looked pretty good.
So I was pretty proud of myself when I discovered the Side Effect, which is a) purple (which means cute, according to what I've read) and b) large enough to hold my Galaxy Note 2, keys, wallet, receipts, lipstick, sunscreen and all the other junk that I haul around.
I told my friend triumphantly today, "I think I've solved my purse issue!" and she told me, "You can't solve a 'purse issue' without a PURSE."
That cracked me up all day. But it also made me wonder if I've gone out of the frying pan and into the fire. So here's my question:
Have I lost all perspective on what looks good because of my fixation with Tom Bihn's usability and build quality? Is there actually enough fashion in the Side Effect that will allow me to take it proudly to a Girls' Night Out in Dallas, Texas without being ridiculed, like the time they laughed at my black leather "George Costanza wallet" sitting frumpily amongst their Vera Bradleys? Or is this bag dooming me again to nerd-dom? (Side note: I have no intention of letting ANYONE know that this bag can also be worn around the waist. That would be social suicide.)
Opinions appreciated. My bag is on backorder so I have several weeks to obsess about it.