3/4 shot of the Paragon in Taiga (olive green with grey grid) 400 Halcyon Taiga Halcyon Paragon with the main pocket open to reveal the Taiga interior. 3/4 shot of the Paragon in Nebulous Grey 525 Ballistic. Nebulous Grey Paragon with the main pocket open to reveal the Acuity interior. Nebulous Grey Paragon with the main pocket open to reveal the Sitka interior. Nebulous Grey Paragon with the main pocket open to reveal the Ultraviolet interior. 3/4 shot of the Paragon in Black 525 Ballistic. Black Paragon with the main pocket open to reveal the Northwest Sky interior. Black Paragon with the main pocket open to reveal the Taiga interior. Black Paragon with the main pocket open to reveal the Solaris interior. Black Paragon with the main pocket open to reveal the Coyote interior. 3/4 shot of the Paragon in Original (black with white grid) 400 Halcyon Original Halcyon Paragon with the main pocket open to reveal the Island interior. 3/4 shot of the Paragon in Black (black with grey grid) 400 Halcyon Black Halcyon Paragon with the main pocket open to reveal the Northwest Sky interior.
Add to wishlist
Add to wishlist

Paragon

$160.00

An updated and limited edition version of a backpack design made by Tom back in the 1970's. Design Lab blackout label.

19.8 liters (1200 cu. in.)

Design Lab Taiga 400 Halcyon/Taiga 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Taiga 400 Halcyon/Taiga 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Black 400 Halcyon/Northwest Sky 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Black 400 Halcyon/Northwest Sky 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Original 400 Halcyon/Island 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Original 400 Halcyon/Island 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Black 525 Ballistic/Northwest Sky 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Black 525 Ballistic/Northwest Sky 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Black 525 Ballistic/Coyote 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Black 525 Ballistic/Coyote 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Black 525 Ballistic/Taiga 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Black 525 Ballistic/Taiga 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Nebulous Grey 525 Ballistic/Acuity 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Nebulous Grey 525 Ballistic/Acuity 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Nebulous Grey 525 Ballistic/Ultraviolet 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Nebulous Grey 525 Ballistic/Ultraviolet 200 Halcyon
Design Lab Black 525 Ballistic/Cloud 210 Ballistic
Design Lab Black 525 Ballistic/Cloud 210 Ballistic
Design Lab Black 525 Ballistic/Island 210 Ballistic
Design Lab Black 525 Ballistic/Island 210 Ballistic
Design Lab Black 525 Ballistic/Coyote 210 Ballistic
Design Lab Black 525 Ballistic/Coyote 210 Ballistic
Design Lab Nebulous Grey 525 Ballistic/Island 210 Ballistic
Design Lab Nebulous Grey 525 Ballistic/Island 210 Ballistic
Top-down shot of the Paragon open. Reverse shot of the Paragon Person walking down the street wearing the Design Lab Edition Paragon in Nebulous Grey. Person walking down the street wearing the Design Lab Edition Paragon in Nebulous Grey. Person pulling a book out of the front exterior pocket of the Paragon backpack. Person pulling a phone and a pen out of the interior zippered pocket of the Paragon. Person pulling a tablet out of the device compartment inside of the Paragon. Person walking down the street with their bicycle wearing the Paragon in Taiga 400d. Person standing and holding the grab handle of the Design Lab Edition Paragon in Taiga. Person standing and wearing on their back the Design Lab Edition Paragon in Taiga. Person pulling lip balm out of the top interior zippered pocket of the Paragon. Person pulling a laptop out of the device pocket of the Paragon.

Description

This is the page for the Design Lab Paragon: it has the Design Lab edition label and a clean front.  Looking for the Guide's Edition Paragon

 

The Paragon is an updated version of a pack design I made myself back in the 70’s. Named the Simplex (one main compartment, like the Paragon) or Duplex (two main compartments - like the Brain Bag but smaller) these basic packs are likely the ones etched into our consciousness when we think of the word “daypack”. Classic rectilinear shape with radius corners; diagonal zippered front pocket (more on that below); flapped zippers; and, well, not a whole lot else going on, which is what some folks love about this design.

 

 

Above: one of the actual Duplex backpacks made by Tom in the 1970's.

 

I can’t help but make some updates to even my own classic designs — after all, I originally made the Simplex and Duplex over 45 years ago. Here’s what I updated for the design of the Paragon:

 

Diagonal Zipper Pocket >> Horizontal Zipper Pocket 

Yes, I know, the diagonal zippered pocket is part of the classic look and many of my packs from the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s featured that. Let's face the facts: it's 2021 and we're carrying various electronic devices. I found that sliding my tablet into the diagonal zippered opening didn’t really work. It’s just easier to get all kinds of stuff in and out of a horizontal zipper front pocket — and, after all, isn’t that what a pocket is for? 

 

Padded Back Panel

Padded back panels were not the norm back then, but we’ve all come to expect them now – partly because we now tend to carry laptops or tablets. Which of course leads to.....

 

Laptop/Device Compartment

If you’d like some padding for your tablet or you carry a laptop, you can stow one or the other in the minimalist built-in laptop compartment of the Paragon. It’s a straight-forward pouch of the same foam laminate that we use to make our Caches, and is accessed inside the main compartment. Fits the 16" MacBook Pro and Dell XPS 17" and, of course, any devices smaller than those two. (And to be able to fit those bigger laptops, I did have to make the Paragon more square and less oval than the original Simplex and Duplex packs.) Now don’t get all mad if you don’t carry a laptop: that compartment also provides additional padding for your back. 

 

Edgeless Shoulder Straps

Conformity is overrated — except, perhaps, when it comes to shoulder straps. The edgelessness of this strap allows it to more softly conform to your shoulder; we find that this increases comfort. Yet the straps aren’t too soft: the 1/2” thick EVAZOTE® OEKO-TEX® certified foam means the strap is robust enough to carry a heavy load. 

 

We decided to release the Paragon with the Design Lab edition label because it’s an experiment of sorts: it’s the first of several upcoming reissues from the TOM BIHN design vault. 

 

And that’s not all: the Paragon has one interior zippered pocket and includes a simple (and removable) sternum strap and waist belt.

I unearthed this pack design around the beginning of the pandemic — we had talked about debuting a new design that would be something fun we could share with all of you sooner rather than later. (That sooner months and months later turned into this later: we became surprisingly busy at the factory sewing masks and ended up not having the time to debut the Paragon.)  

 

I wanted it to be something that’d be pretty easy to cut and sew — in early 2020, things were changing quickly, and one of our crazy brainstormed ideas was that Darcy would learn to cut fabric, Nik would sew bags at the factory, and I would sew bags at home in my garage workshop. We’re nowhere near as skilled as the production crew, so, yeah: simple would be better. Bonus points if it wouldn’t take me all that long to design. Pulling a design from the archives — one I’d patterned, cut, and sewed when I was something like 14 — made sense. (There’s a couple of other simple designs from the 70’s/80’s/90’s that we’ll be reissuing this year: stay tuned…) Of course, we’ve abandoned this quixotic idea of the three of us pretending to be a factory, but out of that pipe dream we did get the Paragon. :)

 

Folks who love our Daylight Backpack but wanted some laptop protection, a padded back, and replete-with-comfort shoulder straps will appreciate this pack. Folks who like the organization of a pack like the Synik or the mega-capacity of a pack like the Brain Bag may want to stick with those. Those who like simplicity, classic design — they’ll find much to appreciate here (precisely because there’s less.) Those who want to see innovation — well, this is a pack about where we came from, not where we’re headed. People who want to complain will complain. And people who want some drama… well… 

 

The Paragon in Halcyon — it’s perfectly imperfect (just like you. Aw.) Because it’s impossible to line up the grid of the Halcyon, it’s well, not lined up. The effect may be visually jarring to those of us who like things to be perfect — it also creates some optical illusions . . . .  that one end of the flap above the horizontal zippered pocket might appear to be shorter than the other, for example. On the bright side, it means each bag is ever-so-slightly unique in a way that’s more obvious than the usual imperceptible slight variances created by the fact that humans cut and sew these bags. How all of this lands for you is up to you — we just want you to know about this when it comes time to choose the right fabric for you.

- Tom

Materials

bluesign® and OEKO-TEX® certified Ultralight 400d Halcyon/420d nylon ripstop
— or —
bluesign® certified 525 denier High-Tenacity 2x2 Ballistic nylon exterior
bluesign® and OEKO-TEX® certified 200 denier Halcyon/nylon ripstop lining fabric
Closed-cell foam back
.25" / 6 mm thick foam padding laminated between black, heavy-duty polyester knit and brushed tricot for the laptop pocket
Edgeless EV50 1/2” / 12mm shoulder straps (EVAZOTE® OEKO-TEX® foam)
#8 YKK coil zipper with metal sliders
#5 YKK coil zipper with plastic sliders
Tough Duraflex®, Nexus, and Woojin buckles and related components

Specs

Sewn in USA with globally sourced materials 100% finished seams

Dimensions: 13.4" (w) x 17.9" (h) x 6.8" (d) / 340 (w) x 455 (h) x 175 (d) mm
Weight: 1 lb 7.6 oz / 670 grams
Volume: 1200 cubic inches / 19.8 liters (ASTM Standard Measure)
Maximum device dimensions for the laptop compartment:
14.09" x 9.68" x 0.64" / 357.9mm x 245.9mm x 16.2 mm
What's Included:
1x 8-inch Black Webbing Snaphook/Snaphook Key Strap
1x Black Zipper Pulls w/ Plastic Ends (8-Pack)
1x Gatekeeper Waist Strap
1x Removable .75" / 20 mm sternum strap
Total O-rings: 4 (2 in the main compartment, 1 in the interior pocket, 1 in the front pocket)
Want to see the specs for all of our bags?

Sewn in Seattle

Our bags are designed and sewn right here in Seattle, Washington, U.S.A.

That allows us to be control freaks in the best way possible; we have direct control and oversight of the quality of our materials, our products, and the jobs and working environment that we help create. It also offers us a unique spontaneity: when we have an idea for a new product or accessory, we can design it, figure out how to build it, add it to our website and be ready to ship it out our front door all within just a few weeks. How cool is that?

Intrigued? You can find out more about the unusual way we do business on our Company Philosophy page.

THE BIHN Guarantee

Everything you buy from us here at TOM BIHN is satisfaction guaranteed. We’ve been in business for over 30 years and we stand behind what we make.

If something goes wrong and it's our fault, we'll fix it for free. Repairs due to normal wear and tear or due to other things that are not our fault will be performed, when possible, at a reasonable charge right here in our Seattle factory where your bag was made. Defects in materials or workmanship are uncommon and almost always evident while the product is still new. Keep in mind that bags and packs are often subject to extreme wear in everyday use: do not expect them to last forever. Only true love lasts forever! You can expect a TOM BIHN product to give years and years of hard service.

Ready to Grab
the Paragon?

Add To Cart
Rated 4.6 out of 5
Based on 11 reviews
average rating 4.6 out of 5
Based on 11 reviews
  • 5 Stars
    9 Reviews
  • 4 Stars
    1 Review
  • 3 Stars
    0 Reviews
  • 2 Stars
    1 Review
  • 1 Star
    0 Reviews
91% of reviewers would recommend this product to a friend
Review posted
Reviewed by Sam
Verified Buyer
Rated 5 out of 5

Best backpack ever... SERIOUSLY

I don’t know how Tom does it every time, but this is yet another amazing and incredibly functional backpack. I really prefer the one large open body in a backpack and was preparing to purchase a Daylight, even though it didn’t quite have the back structure I wanted to comfortably carry a laptop and other hard sided items, when I saw the preorder announcement for the Paragon. The Paragon is everyone was hoping for and better really! I loved the fact that it wasn’t as deep as other bags with multiple interior areas, although I wondered how much I would really be able to fit. The answer is EVERYTHING! I loaded up all my necessities and regular items and was still able to add all sorts of things and stuff a hoodie in the top. The squared off top is what really makes the difference space wise and also gives it a great look. I also love that the laptop portion has a false bottom to protect my laptop. For the record, I am still considering buying a Daylight pack, but for totally different uses, and not because this isn’t perfect, because it is perfect!

Loading...
I recommend this product
Was this helpful?
Review posted
Reviewed by Nancy S.
Verified Buyer
Rated 5 out of 5

Just Right - Not too big, Not too small

I have been looking for a mid-sized backpack for commuting or day trips. I love my Tom Bihn Pop Tote but some days you need a backpack. I have a 32 L backpack that is great for weekends away, and a packable day pack that didn't have enough back or shoulder support for long days. The Paragon is just right. It is compact but carries more than you think, light weight and the back & shoulder padding is awesome. It does not dig into my shoulder and the waist and chest straps are removable/adjustable. I like the one big compartment and have whale pouches in different sizes to keep me organized. Great bag!

Loading...
I recommend this product
Was this helpful?
Review posted
Reviewed by Josh
Verified Buyer
Rated 4 out of 5

Close

I really like this pack. Its spacious, looks great, keeps a slim profile, and is very comfortable. The laptop compartment is top notch as well. However it falls short of 5 stars with no padding on the bottom or elevation of the laptop compartment and the rain flaps do interfere with the zipper lines at times.

Loading...
I recommend this product
Was this helpful?
Review posted
Reviewed by Ken S.
Verified Buyer
Rated 5 out of 5

Great "basic backpack"

Really enjoy using the Paragon - easy to get to all the pockets/areas, and there's plenty of room for what I need to put in it. I'm not packing it super full, but it is surprisingly capacious. This bag is what I hoped the Luminary might be for me - this one is much better proportioned for my body. You've done it again, TB!

Loading...
I recommend this product
Was this helpful?
Review posted
Reviewed by AYS
Verified Buyer
Rated 5 out of 5

Great for putting a lot of bulky items in or travel

I love this bag. I usually prefer the organizational pockets of the Pilot or Synik/Synapse but this has been a useful "throw everything in" bag to go to the hospital, out for the day or throw into a larger bag and use at destination for travel. The padded computer pockets works well for an iPad or notebook. This is a "use for the day" bag for me and not a weekend travel bag.

Loading...
I recommend this product
Was this helpful?