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Thread: Frank II's interview over at Carryology

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    TOM BIHN Crew (we work here) Darcy's Avatar
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    Frank II's interview over at Carryology

    Current Carry: Skookum Dog Citizen Canine prototype, 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

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    Quote Originally Posted by Darcy View Post
    This was a great interview, but I wanted to go through and insert caption descriptions and labels for all the different accessories Frank was using in those bags! (TB Forum habits die hard -- you just know somebody's going to ask about which packing cube product is in that picture!). I agree this was an interesting interview about the whole one bag travel philosophy, and that Tom Bihn products had great coverage,

    moriond
    Last edited by moriond; 05-16-2014 at 12:37 PM. Reason: Deleted duplicate signature

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    The truth is, most "legacy manufacturers" of luggage use run of the mill designs and fabrics, produce their goods in the cheapest manner possible and use such complicated distribution channels that we are charged for the middle men markup, not the quality of the bags.

    I speak from experience and was very happy when John Ball mentioned it in the Innovation in Fabrics (video) - TOM BIHN Blog: We make travel bags in Seattle, Washington

    Design, built and fabric make all the difference between an uncomfortable piece of luggage/carrying equipment which might turn off someone to ever travel again, and a bag that becomes an extension of the user thus makes for a pleasant journey and make some of the frustrating experiences easier to bear.

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    Registered User scribe's Avatar
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    I'm feeling seriously inspired by Frank's interview to go carry-on only for my upcoming US trip, using a small rollaboard (to spare my back) plus a TB personal item (either the Pilot that I have on back-order, or my Swift if the Pilot doesn't turn up on time). I'll need to do a test pack, but now that I have TB packing cubes, the job is a lot easier!
    Collections:
    black/aubergine + wasabi (WF, SA + UMP, CP, TT, TSSs, SE, Swift, QK, YSSs & KTPs)
    forest/cork/linen + steel/olive (Imago, Pilot, SCB, COW, QK, OPs)
    olive/plum + steel/UV/wasabi (S19, SE, MCB, TSSs, SSBs, YSSs, LSS, 3DOCs, OPs)
    black/steel + iberian (S25, DLBP, SE, SCB, FJN, TSSs, YSSs, 3DFOC)
    Hoping for: FJN for iPad Mini; more bags in Aubergine; the return of Portable Culture!

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    My reply posted before I was finished. I wanted to add the following links:

    Design: Meet the Maker; Tom Bihn, built: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GOBi...M&noredirect=1


    Frank II website and experience, have been invaluable, especially when I first started light packing and when I needed to accommodate this philosophy to ultra light packing internationally.

    He is always on top of essential travel news concerning airlines, airports, destinations...

    Not the run of the mill "travel reports", we have been subjected to, by tv news or the endless stream of pictures full, and fact slim, travellers blogs (which are great as travel journals to share with family members and friends).
    Last edited by backpack; 05-17-2014 at 09:52 AM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by scribe View Post
    I'm feeling seriously inspired by Frank's interview to go carry-on only for my upcoming US trip, using a small rollaboard (to spare my back) plus a TB personal item (either the Pilot that I have on back-order, or my Swift if the Pilot doesn't turn up on time). I'll need to do a test pack, but now that I have TB packing cubes, the job is a lot easier!
    I think the US would probably be one of the easiest places to one bag it depending on where you are going. Laundromats are pretty common. In large cities like NYC (and I've seen them in DC area but never used them), you can find fairly inexpensive laundry services where you drop off your clothes. Most hotels have laundry service as well.

    Plus there are plenty of places to find inexpensive clothes if somehow you realize the weather and your wardrobe isn't quite meshing. We also have plenty of large chain stores where you can find almost anything you can imagine.

    And I almost forgot to mention that stores generally stay open for long hours so laundromats/stores will be open 7 days/week and near 16 hours/day, if not more. Some will be open 24 hours per day. The only exception to this is if you are in some small towns, things may have more limited hours but they will still tend to be open almost every day. Even my inlaws who live in the middle of nowhere have a 24 hour grocery store, which I don't quite understand.
    Last edited by Leena; 05-16-2014 at 03:19 PM.
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    Love Frank's philosophy, it's encouraging but not exclusionary!

    Leena: there are still laundromats in DC? (In areas frequented by travelers, that is.) In my neighborhood (which admittedly is not touristy, but near a major university so one would think students would still need laundromats), there was one that I knew of, and it closed a couple of years ago. I kind of wish there was one nearby, as I liked washing my big comforter in the industrial-sized machines.

    Random thoughts on one-bag travel, addressed to the thread at large (not directed at anyone in particular ):

    I used to one-bag it a lot when I was traveling frequently for business (the fly-out Monday, fly-back Thursday type of project deal, that stretched over weeks or months), but haven't done much of that since we started traveling with kids. Not knocking that style of travel.... I just find that my carry-on space is currently dominated by entertainment for the kids, and we tend to fly to one place then stay there, when we do travel.

    My other challenge with one-bagging is that I dislike spending time shopping for essentials when I get to where I'm going. With young kids, there's a limited amount of time between meals, naps, and "kid activities" (meaning stuff like swimming, running around, etc. that aren't location-specific, but that must happen if we are to have happy campers), and I don't want to spend any of it looking for an unfamiliar shopping district or trying to decipher labels in another language.

    (As the kids get bigger, I do hope to move towards a one-bag routine, though! And for now my compromise is to carry on a minimal set of gear - toothbrush, change of clothes for each person), so that we can still have fun if luggage does go astray for a bit. )

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    Registered User scribe's Avatar
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    @Leena - Yes, I'll be staying at a hotel (Hilton) in a city (Bloomington, MN), so shopping wouldn't be a problem. I'm not planning on doing laundry, though - I'm only there for 5 nights, so I can probably fit enough clothes into my rollaboard, especially in summer. I might wash the clothes I flew in, so that I can wear them again on the way home (I like to wear soft yoga pants that don't need a belt), but that will be it barring emergencies.

    @haraya I totally agree - even without kids in tow, I don't want to spend the first 24 hours of my trip scouting the neighbourhood for a pharmacy, or buying clothes that I have at home - for one thing I've adopted the Project333 philosophy of building a capsule wardrobe, and for another, it feels like a waste of money. The only clothes I buy when I'm away are maybe one souvenir t-shirt and a bit of jewellery.

    Hence I focus on things like

    * travel-sized toiletries / decanting favourite brands into travel-sized containers

    * dry toiletries so that my 3-1-1 isn't full-to-bursting!

    * using the afore-mentioned capsule wardrobe to ensure I don't take more clothes than I need

    * not going overboard on the "disaster planning" - yes, I want basics like painkillers and a change of shoes, but I'm not going to try and pack for all possibilities

    * efficient packing with the help of my TB bags and accessories

    Also, my definition of "one-bag" means a main bag plus a substantial personal item to hold valuables, electronics and other small items. I don't think I've ever travelled with more than that, although the main bag has sometimes been a checked suitcase.
    Last edited by scribe; 05-16-2014 at 11:15 PM.
    Collections:
    black/aubergine + wasabi (WF, SA + UMP, CP, TT, TSSs, SE, Swift, QK, YSSs & KTPs)
    forest/cork/linen + steel/olive (Imago, Pilot, SCB, COW, QK, OPs)
    olive/plum + steel/UV/wasabi (S19, SE, MCB, TSSs, SSBs, YSSs, LSS, 3DOCs, OPs)
    black/steel + iberian (S25, DLBP, SE, SCB, FJN, TSSs, YSSs, 3DFOC)
    Hoping for: FJN for iPad Mini; more bags in Aubergine; the return of Portable Culture!

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    @scribe - A 5 day trip is certainly easier, I was thinking more of longer trips where the weather can turn unexpectantly or even you run out of toiletries. And I agree with trying to limit the 'disaster planning' to only the most likely scenarios. Also, most grocery stores in the US either have pharmacies or at least some of the basic medicine so it is generally easy to get. On our recent trip to Italy, we only had to seek out a pharmacy because we didn't think about sea sickness pills for a long day of boat riding that wasn't part of the original itinerary. (and that was a slight adventure because the pharmacist only knew basic english and the common sea sickness pill in the US isn't available in Italy but we got what we needed quickly and easily)
    Last edited by Leena; 05-17-2014 at 03:28 AM.

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    @scribe - Nice to see someone else mention Project 333. While I am not ready to completely take the plunge, it has gotten me to clean out my closets and really evaluate what I need.

    I haven't had too much experience with doing laundry on longer trips - most of mine have been in the winter so having to launder larger items hasn't been an issue (been able to get away with spot cleaning and airing things out). On the few long trips (say two weeks) in the summer I've either been at hostels or hotels geared towards backpackers where there were laundry facilities near by (best one - doing laundry at a nice B&B since our original hotel didn't have a functioning laundry in Daintree, Australia. The B&B also had a wildlife rehabilitation center on the grounds, which made for a memorable morning.)

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    @Leena Yes, I had to buy throat lozenges in Italy because I came down with a cold - I went for the packet with the familiar logo, even though the brand name was different.

    @Vecturist I confess that I don't include jewellery in my 33 items - it takes up very little space compared to clothing, plus I wear a lot of solid colours so it provides some much-needed visual emphasis. Also I have a separate "formal" wardrobe put by for special occasions, because my day-to-day wear is very casual. But I love rotating my wardrobe every season to bring in new colours and styles - and of course it gives me an excuse to have a different TB bag for each season
    Collections:
    black/aubergine + wasabi (WF, SA + UMP, CP, TT, TSSs, SE, Swift, QK, YSSs & KTPs)
    forest/cork/linen + steel/olive (Imago, Pilot, SCB, COW, QK, OPs)
    olive/plum + steel/UV/wasabi (S19, SE, MCB, TSSs, SSBs, YSSs, LSS, 3DOCs, OPs)
    black/steel + iberian (S25, DLBP, SE, SCB, FJN, TSSs, YSSs, 3DFOC)
    Hoping for: FJN for iPad Mini; more bags in Aubergine; the return of Portable Culture!

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    Quote Originally Posted by scribe View Post
    I've adopted the Project333 philosophy of building a capsule wardrobe
    Thanks for the link. I am going in similar direction but didn't had a clear idea of the format of the downsizing.

    The link helped a lot!

    Sent from Samsung Note III using Tapatalk
    Last edited by eWalker; 05-17-2014 at 02:26 PM.
    scribe likes this.
    Orders are here! Unpacking A45, A30, NF20 & CP10! TB Crew rocks!!

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    Quote Originally Posted by scribe View Post
    @Leena - Yes, I'll be staying at a hotel (Hilton) in a city (Bloomington, MN), so shopping wouldn't be a problem. I'm not planning on doing laundry, though - I'm only there for 5 nights, so I can probably fit enough clothes into my rollaboard, especially in summer. I might wash the clothes I flew in, so that I can wear them again on the way home (I like to wear soft yoga pants that don't need a belt), but that will be it barring emergencies.

    @haraya I totally agree - even without kids in tow, I don't want to spend the first 24 hours of my trip scouting the neighbourhood for a pharmacy, or buying clothes that I have at home - for one thing I've adopted the Project333 philosophy of building a capsule wardrobe, and for another, it feels like a waste of money. The only clothes I buy when I'm away are maybe one souvenir t-shirt and a bit of jewellery.

    Hence I focus on things like

    * travel-sized toiletries / decanting favourite brands into travel-sized containers

    * dry toiletries so that my 3-1-1 isn't full-to-bursting!

    * using the afore-mentioned capsule wardrobe to ensure I don't take more clothes than I need

    * not going overboard on the "disaster planning" - yes, I want basics like painkillers and a change of shoes, but I'm not going to try and pack for all possibilities

    * efficient packing with the help of my TB bags and accessories

    Also, my definition of "one-bag" means a main bag plus a substantial personal item to hold valuables, electronics and other small items. I don't think I've ever travelled with more than that, although the main bag has sometimes been a checked suitcase.

    Make sure to check the weather National Weather Service

    I like this site by NOAA because it has a 7 days forecast, temperatures in Celcius and Farenheit and detailed daily prediction so one knows how to dress.


    I really admire your packing efficiency, before I had TB bags, I always carried an enormous amount of stuff.

    I have learn to use a wardrobe system similar to the Project 333, you mentioned.

    I have a capsule wardrobe because I am hard to fit. I hate shopping for clothes because I have to try on every single piece in multiple sizes and each color, sometimes, a manufacturer will cut corners, and one color will be made of a different fabric or cut differently resulting in the too tight and unflattering "i want to look like Daisy Duke or Wonder Woman but my love handles are in the way" look or too loose fitting matronly look.

    Clothes need to drape to look flattering. I used a book that combined colors and clothing styles, it was indexed by colors and had a color wheel, an index of clothing style names and an illustration of clothing cuts. I cannot find the title nor the book.

    I then, used the Color Me Beautiful books to get a better sense of what color was most flattering for me.





    (I do all my retail therapy with TB items, writing instruments, art and needlework supplies)

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    @backpack Ah yes, I read Colour Me Beautiful many years ago, when I found a copy in my local library. I so, so wanted to be a Winter, because I like wearing black, but I've had to resign myself to admitting I'm an Autumn (which is my favourite season in the real world). Hence I wear a lot of blue, green and purple as a compromise
    backpack and nsh like this.
    Collections:
    black/aubergine + wasabi (WF, SA + UMP, CP, TT, TSSs, SE, Swift, QK, YSSs & KTPs)
    forest/cork/linen + steel/olive (Imago, Pilot, SCB, COW, QK, OPs)
    olive/plum + steel/UV/wasabi (S19, SE, MCB, TSSs, SSBs, YSSs, LSS, 3DOCs, OPs)
    black/steel + iberian (S25, DLBP, SE, SCB, FJN, TSSs, YSSs, 3DFOC)
    Hoping for: FJN for iPad Mini; more bags in Aubergine; the return of Portable Culture!

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    Quote Originally Posted by scribe View Post
    @backpack Ah yes, I read Colour Me Beautiful many years ago, when I found a copy in my local library. I so, so wanted to be a Winter, because I like wearing black, but I've had to resign myself to admitting I'm an Autumn (which is my favourite season in the real world). Hence I wear a lot of blue, green and purple as a compromise
    I think that black is ok for everybody in lower pieces such as skirts, pants and ombre dresses.

    What is important is to find the right shade for pieces that are close to the face as the wrong color will wash out the color from one's complexion.

    I wore a lot of hand me down clothes during my teens and early twenties. I wore a light cream dress and my picture was taken in that dress and I could have played the proverbial wallflower girl if I had posed in front of a light wall, a cream wall and I would have been the invisible girl.

    I was given a fabulous pant suit in Aubergine by my youngest aunt who was a true Autumn.


    I don't remember when Aubergine was introduced by Tom Bihn Inc, Moriond can you help?

    Well... I got misty eyed when Aubergine was introduced but wasn't able to buy anything in that color until the Fabulous Knitting Tool Pouches came into existence.


    I am a Winter and indeed love purple, pink, teal, blue and cool greys with passion. I have them in all wardrobe, accessories (TB items) as well as shoes, scarves and "jewellery."

    I have a nice looking Aubergine business jacket which is almost the same color as my Plum/Steel Swift. They make a stunning pair which I can match or contrast with pink or wine tops and black pants.
    I have tried for many years to find plum/aubergine pants to match the jacket but no luck.


    Aubergine and Plum in TB bags are really gorgeous colors and can be considered fall season or all season neutrals for both Warm and Cool color seasons.

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