the loooong-overdue backpack update

does anyone remember this post? it's been almost a year, and i realized that i never updated. then again, i'm not sure anyone is still reading my blog, so maybe it doesn't matter. har har.

in any case, i decided to bite the bullet and get a backpack. it arrived in early march (right before we went on our vegan cruise that i keep threatening to tell you about), and i've been using it instead of a messenger bag ever since. of course, last spring/summer it wasn't getting much play, since i wasn't exactly going to school that much, but still. this fall it's been coming with me to school several times per week, and it has also gone on a few vacations with me. it was weird adjusting to a backpack; as i whined about last year, i felt a little like i was trying to blend in with the kids, and it made me self-conscious. but pretty much the instant i realized that it was helping my back, i stopped caring about that.

i ended up buying a smart alec from the wonderful and amazing tom bihn company (i heart them so). it's a pretty great bag, and it's kind of insane how much it can hold. there are only two things that i have been disappointed by: (a) it's actually a little too big for me, i think, and (b) the fabric on the backside of the bag irritates some of my clothing. by and large, i've really been enjoying the bag–my back is feeling much better, even when i'm carrying a heavy load, and that was the entire point. but sometimes i feel like i look a bit like a ginormous turtle with it on my back. and there are a few "delicate" shirts that have gotten pilled up from the cordura on the back, which makes me a little sad. now that i know, i just wear clothes that are more durable when i'm having a backpack day. 

anyhow, there had been rumblings all along of a new backpack in development, one that would be a bit smaller and perhaps a bit better fit for my frame. i've been watching tom bihn somewhat obsessively, developing a crush on this impending backpack long before it was ever officially unveiled, and meanwhile buying all sorts of other things from them (or putting them on my birthday wish list, hee). i got us a pair of aeronauts (also for our cruise, but they have since also been on a trip to austin), i got accessories for everything (fancy shoulder straps, a laptop case, a variety of organizer pouches (some clear, some not, one cork!), and a freudian slip), and i got a small cafe bag, which is awesome. oh! and i also got an adorable little organizer wallet, which is tops, because it's super flat but carries a ton. lovery.

you realize that this is all building up to a reveal, right? the new backpack, called the synapse, was finally officially unveiled awhile back, and was made available for pre-order, and it looks really great. one of my favorite details is that they put a gentler fabric on the back of the bag (yay!), and another favorite detail was the fact that the early run would be offered in a bunch of me-friendly colors. i had a really hard time deciding (i was hemming and hawing between indigo, kelly, plum, and navy), but eventually settled on navy because i decided it would look the best with my variety of coats. i'm so weird. i got an email this morning, telling me that UPS has got my new backpack in its clutches, and now i'm all excited. i hope i love love love it! 

tom bihn is an awesome company and i heartily recommend them. the pricing isn't for the faint-of-heart, but the quality and customer service make it worth it, to me. they don't use leather (totally vegan-friendly, love that!) and everything is made in seattle. they have a sweetly loyal customer base, and i totally understand why. they listen to their customers (even when they whine, like me) and they make amazing loot.


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