The Icon is a cross-body or over-the-shoulder bag. Tom designed the initial prototyping and rough patterning for the Icon in about three hours. It looked promising, so he spent the next two weeks nuancing the shape, adding a few features and perfecting the pattern. It’s a playful expression of a spontaneous inspiration and it doesn't take itself too seriously: if there is a Muse of Bags, we can say with some certainty that Tom was so visited.
You’ll know whether or not the Icon is for you simply by looking at it. Does it delight you? Are you smiling? There you go.
The Icon has one zippered main compartment and two zippered pockets (smaller one on the front and larger one on the back). Inside the main compartment, there’s a couple of pen slots on the side edge, two open-top pouch-pockets against the front panel for phone or wallet or passport, and two O-ring tether points for key straps (speaking of: one 8" Black Key Strap is included with the Icon) or accessory pouches. There’s two O-ring tether points in each of the two zippered pockets as well. That’s about it.
Akin to our Color Zipper Ghost Whale Organizer Pouches, we’re having some fun experimenting on the Icon with contrast color zippers. And if you find that a bit much, we’re offering a Solid Black Icon: its exterior fabric is black, its zippers are black, even our logo label is dark grey/black instead of the usual colors.
Good to know: the Icon’s main compartment zips entirely shut: this is cool but the compromise is that the opening is somewhat smaller than you might expect (only about 9.4” / 240mm). This means that some items which could fit inside the bag won’t fit through the zipper opening. Just thought you’d want to know.
But you know us: even in the most simple of designs, we make an effort to sneak in a bit of innovation. The Icon is the first bag to utilize the Rabbit Hole design solution engineered by Tom that hides excess shoulder strap length; instead of dangling down or doubling back on the strap, the excess webbing of the Icon’s shoulder strap seamlessly disappears down into a hidden rabbit hole in the side of the bag.
Will the Rabbit Hole shoulder strap design work for everyone? Quite simply, no. Feeding the excess webbing into the hidden rabbit hole takes a little bit of time and effort; it’s effort we feel is worth it if you don’t adjust your strap all that often, as it’s an elegant solution for excess strap webbing.
You’ll appreciate the Rabbit Hole shoulder strap design if…..
You’re a set-it-and-forget-it type shoulder strap person. In other words, you adjust the length of your shoulder strap only occasionally.
You don’t like excess shoulder strap webbing hanging down; you prefer clean lines and a trim aesthetic.
Height-wise, you’re a shorter person, or, for some other reason, you want to be able to adjust the strap down to be quite short, and possibly even handle length. (Though, of course, the Icon works great for taller folks as well due to how adjustable the strap is.)
You’d like the ability to remove the included shoulder pad entirely (using just the webbing as the strap or perhaps replacing our pad with one you’ve made yourself.)
The Rabbit Hole shoulder strap design probably is not for you if….
You frequently adjust the length of your shoulder strap.
You want the shoulder strap to be fully removable.
Some messenger-style bags with quick adjust buckles have straps that are sewn to the bag; others do not, and the Icon is one of those that do not.If you fail to fully close the cam buckle, or you open the cam buckle without first setting the bag on to a surface (like while you’re wearing the bag), it might fall to the ground. Just like how, if you’re wearing a cross-body bag with a side release buckle strap (so, like a Side Effect worn cross-body sling bag style) and if you undo that buckle, it’d fall to the ground. So, definitely don’t do that, but if you think you might, we recommend taking a look at our Small and Medium Cafe Bags instead — they have sewn-in shoulder straps.
- Bob M.Verified ReviewerBought For MyselfProduct Standouts Thoughtful Design, Comfortable, High Quality Craftsmanship, Unique10 months agoBought For MyselfProduct Standouts Thoughtful Design, Comfortable, High Quality Craftsmanship, UniqueRated 5 out of 5 starsThe best of the cross body bags.
I've carried Tom's bags since he was a one man operation in Santa Cruz. The Icon is/was the best design of all for an everyday messenger. It's a shame that it's no longer in production. What a waste of a very original and innovative bag.
- Kristin G.Verified BuyerBought For MyselfProduct Standouts Thoughtful Design, High Quality Craftsmanship, Durable, Unique, Good Storage Size11 months agoBought For MyselfProduct Standouts Thoughtful Design, High Quality Craftsmanship, Durable, Unique, Good Storage SizeRated 5 out of 5 starsEnjoying the Icon
The Icon is a TB bag that expands to hold more than you’d think, but doesn’t look bulky or boxy. It has just the right amount of pockets and internal organization. The colorful and curved zippers make getting into the bag a breeze, and the color combinations always make me smile. It’s a happy, medium-sized carry. I do wish the strap was a bit softer like the other TB straps, but that isn’t a dealbreaker, just something to note. I really enjoy using this bag.
- MeganVerified Buyer2 years agoRated 5 out of 5 starsPerfect.
I was looking for a mid-size EDC bag for running errands and (someday) travel. To my mind this is a perfect purse. Enough pockets and interior compartments to be organized, zippers to keep everything contained, and a lovely aesthetic with all the curved seams.
The all-black looks sharp (love the dark logo) and the build quality is superb as usual. Everything about it is thoughtful and carefully done. Even when packed out, it sits close to the body and is comfortable to carry. I'd highly recommend this to anyone looking for an everyday bag.
- Yoko2 years agoRated 5 out of 5 starsThe best EDC bag!
The Icon is big enough to put necessities AND a 20oz water bottle in there, but it’s small enough to bring everywhere with me even for a quick outing.
I had used a sidekick for a while. It’s was perfect until I decided to carry a water bottle with me.
I have a medium cafe bag as well, but the main compartment zipper on the Icon makes a huge difference since I’m not so aware of my surroundings and lose things easily.
All black Icon is aesthetically very pleasing too.
- JohnVerified Reviewer2 years agoRated 2 out of 5 starsJust Not A Great Bag.
I own many Tom Bihn bags and accessories… this is the only one I had to try and love and still didn’t. As you may know: the attention to detail and build quality are great. The execution is not.
The bag’s outer pocket is fine, but a bit awkward… and is made even more awkward by how I want to use this asymmetrical bag as a left-handed person. The large main compartment is often almost useless, and when it is useful it’s hard to justify the ramming needed to get anything into the opening. In addition the bag’s organization is severely lacking. Thank goodness for o-rings…
The overall design is nice and looks good, however I had more issues than not attempting to adjust the shoulder strap and feel it’d be faster and just as comfortable without the clunky gimmick of tucking the straps into the body. Finally, the addition of the back pocket zipper is just so limiting as well: Every other Tom Bihn shoulder-ish bag I own has a an open back pocket that allows for quick flexibility, whereas for some reason they (again) wanted to make a small pocket even smaller.TBTOM BIHN2 years ago
Hi there! Thanks so much for taking the time to review the Icon. I'm sorry that bag isn't working out well for you! I just sent you an email in follow up. -Mike
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.
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Everything you buy from us here at TOM BIHN is satisfaction guaranteed. We’ve been in business since 1972 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.