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Old 07-17-2008, 12:26 PM   #1 (permalink)
Eh?
 
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Messenger bags

I was just hoping to get the thoughts of TFP on this new trend.

I'm going to grad school this fall, and as silly as it sounds, I'd like to look the part.

However, it's surprisingly hard to find a messenger bag in my price range (less than 100 dollars) with a good vintage/distressed look, in black.

So does anyone know any good places to shop for one?
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Old 07-17-2008, 12:42 PM   #2 (permalink)
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The only messenger bags I ever see around these parts (a college town) are Timbuk2 bags; unless you special-order from Timbuk2 (which puts the price tag way over $100) you won't get a vintage/distressed look. The REI outlet often has them discounted, but because it's an outlet, they're often in strange color combinations. Right now they do have a black Original Commute messenger bag for $69.95 on the website. I've also seen them more heavily discounted on steepandcheap.com.

For the record, I own a Timbuk2 backpack and a purse, and I love both--so much so that my SO is looking at getting a messenger bag from them.
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Old 07-17-2008, 12:48 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Halo satchel bag $39.99

probably not big enough for your needs...
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Old 07-17-2008, 12:50 PM   #4 (permalink)
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For years I've only used Manhattan Portage bags - at one point for easy access to spray cans and now for easy access to my cameras. Great bags that are nicely designed and easily take a beating.

I've had one for over 5 years now and I still have yet to break a zipper or break a strap. No flash - just a good reliable bag.
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Old 07-17-2008, 01:13 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I bought a leather messenger off eBay for 30 quid ($60). Made sure the measurements were appropriate, bought it, have used it every day for the past 9 months. Beginning to wear nicely, but still in good working condition and should last me another year or two at least.
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Old 07-17-2008, 02:33 PM   #6 (permalink)
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You can get a great reliable backpack for less than $50. And, you will look the part of a student.
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Old 07-17-2008, 03:35 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Maybe this backpack?

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Old 07-17-2008, 03:39 PM   #8 (permalink)
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I bought my beloved messenger bag at a military surplus store somewhere around Nashua, New Hampshire about 7 years ago for $12. It's still going strong. Plain, black canvas messanger bag. I added a black-on-white POW patch for aesthetics, also purchased at the surplus store. As far as sturdy canvas goes, you can't get any better than military grade.

Cyn - That's an awesome bag.
Span2 - Just what I need to polish my developing Jedi skills. I want that so bad.
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Last edited by genuinegirly; 07-17-2008 at 03:43 PM..
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Old 07-17-2008, 04:00 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Do you want a real bag for real use or are you just a total poseur?

Bailey works makes real, actually useful messenger bags at good prices.

May not get many style points though, except among others who actually use the things for their intended purpose.
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Old 07-17-2008, 04:06 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Whats wrong with a backpack? Why does everyone now use big purses?
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Old 07-17-2008, 04:50 PM   #11 (permalink)
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Try Fossil? I LOVE their bags, most of the leather ones are distressed. They may even have a clearance section on the webstore... not sure!

Also, check out:

http://www.uncrate.com/search/messenger+bag/

Uncrate shows a lot of sweet stuff. In fact, the second one there listed as "Deployment Messenger Bag" is pretty sweet, though it doesn't fit your requirements.

EDIT:

Oh yeah, and try: http://bedstu.com/browse/bags

Bed|Stu makes awesome stuff for good prices. Quality is tops. I want several pairs of their shoes... wait, did I just say that? Ugh! But they have cool bags, too!
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Last edited by xepherys; 07-17-2008 at 04:53 PM.. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
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Old 07-17-2008, 07:03 PM   #12 (permalink)
Eh?
 
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@ the messenger bag haters

Some people do enjoy fashion/being in style.

If its not your "bag" don't hate.

I am digging the fossil ones though
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Old 07-17-2008, 07:23 PM   #13 (permalink)
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I actually have a PUMA messenger bag that is black that I use as my diaper bag. Way cooler then most diaper bags
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Old 07-17-2008, 07:24 PM   #14 (permalink)
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If you are going to grad school you will be carrying books. Books are heavy. They will usually be supported by one shoulder only. You will have back pain. You will buy a backpack.
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Old 07-17-2008, 07:31 PM   #15 (permalink)
Eh?
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by guyy
If you are going to grad school you will be carrying books. Books are heavy. They will usually be supported by one shoulder only. You will have back pain. You will buy a backpack.
I have one class a night, 4 nights a week. So no, I won't be carrying more then one book, and a notebook.
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Old 07-18-2008, 01:37 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Hmm, you can try a store like Ross, they usually have lots of styles from all sorts of retailers. You can probably pick up a leather laptop satchel for cheap, then distress it yourself. Ebay's a good option, too, as you can really find something unique.

I love using messenger bags, one of my friends actually made me one from some linen he picked up at an art store. It's not a bad option as you can probably get this or a more heavy duty fabric for cheap and build one yourself. I did end up ripping it at the seam from carrying too much (and the linen itself is way too light for heavy loads,) so I'll have to re-line it in the future.

Last edited by evilbeefchan; 07-18-2008 at 01:40 AM..
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Old 07-18-2008, 02:13 AM   #17 (permalink)
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It hurts to see people talking about grad school, saying "then" when the right word is "THAN". Your acceptance is revoked. Please burn your college and high school diplomas and go fill out an application at Church's Fried Chicken.

I have an L.L. Bean canvas and leather bag that cost $40, as well as a Coach bag that was free because I married the owner. Both are great. The Coach bag can take abuse. I've stuffed more than 5 books in it, as well as notepads and pens, and it never stretches.
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Old 07-18-2008, 02:32 AM   #18 (permalink)
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To be fair, he did use it correctly in the OP. =P
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Old 07-18-2008, 03:06 AM   #19 (permalink)
 
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reload bags in philly--good stuff. and you can go both ways:

http://www.reloadbags.com/

if you ride a bike the advantages of a messenger bag over a backpack are obvious. i don't find them comfortable to wander around with in general, but for carrying stuff on a bike, they're great. chances are, if you hate on the bags, you don't ride.
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Old 07-18-2008, 04:00 AM   #20 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Poppinjay
It hurts to see people talking about grad school, saying "then" when the right word is "THAN". Your acceptance is revoked. Please burn your college and high school diplomas and go fill out an application at Church's Fried Chicken.
you saw that too...
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Old 07-18-2008, 10:13 AM   #21 (permalink)
Eh?
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Poppinjay
It hurts to see people talking about grad school, saying "then" when the right word is "THAN". Your acceptance is revoked. Please burn your college and high school diplomas and go fill out an application at Church's Fried Chicken.
Um, I'm sorry? I made a post at 1030 after a long day at work, and I didn't really consider the grammar of the sentence. Or, didn't your mom ever tell you that if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all? Or, go fuck yourself?
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Old 07-18-2008, 10:31 AM   #22 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stare At The Sun
Um, I'm sorry? I made a post at 1030 after a long day at work, and I didn't really consider the grammar of the sentence. Or, didn't your mom ever tell you that if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all? Or, go fuck yourself?
Sorry to be slightly off topic, but perhaps in your studies you should consider a conflict resolution course.
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Old 07-21-2008, 05:50 AM   #23 (permalink)
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Quote:
Or, didn't your mom ever tell you that if you can't say anything nice, don't say anything at all?
Actually, that's a quote from "Bambi".

Quote:
Or, go fuck yourself?
Don't need to, have someone to do it for me. Have fun at grad school.
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Old 07-22-2008, 07:36 AM   #24 (permalink)
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At any rate...

Let us know what one you choose!
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Old 07-22-2008, 08:25 AM   #25 (permalink)
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Elephant + Squid = Graduate Student
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Old 07-22-2008, 08:48 AM   #26 (permalink)
Eh?
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xepherys View Post
At any rate...

Let us know what one you choose!
Still trying to find the one that is *just right*.

It's tough.
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Old 07-24-2008, 03:21 PM   #27 (permalink)
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I second rb's recommendation of ReLoad bags, though good luck getting one for under $100. They'll also customize the hell out of a bag if you have ideas.

Timbuk2, Chrome, or PAC bags all work well.

That being said, messenger style bags always end up hurting my back. I have a Chrome backpack right now that does just what it needs to.
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Old 08-25-2008, 12:06 PM   #28 (permalink)
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Well, I ended up going with:
Wilsons Leather - Business & Travel : Messengers: E/W Full Flap Messenger





Overall, I'm pretty happy with the look. The strap could be a bit longer, but for 60 bucks, I'm happy with the quality, and the size of the bag.
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Old 08-25-2008, 12:23 PM   #29 (permalink)
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That's not a messenger bag. That's just a bag.



Unless you ride a bicycle and actually are a messenger please don't buy one. Stick with a backpack.
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Old 08-25-2008, 12:27 PM   #30 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by blahblah454 View Post
Whats wrong with a backpack? Why does everyone now use big purses?
It's a throwback to the 1970's when we used to use the green canvas style messenger bags. Or the everpresent Adidas gym bag. Backpacks didn't really come into popular usage until I was in second year (around 1979- 80). Now it seems that everybody (including public school children) have to carry a figgin backpack everywhere. I've even seen grade 3 girls using luggage carriers to go to school. And the use of backpacks on the subways and buses is bloody annoying as the kids refuse to take them off. At least with messenger bags, they luggage is under control and close to one's side.

My son just bought a nice black fabric one at HBC. About $40 and really sturdy.
-----Added 25/8/2008 at 04 : 30 : 39-----
Quote:
Originally Posted by Poppinjay View Post

I have an L.L. Bean canvas and leather bag that cost $40, as well as a Coach bag that was free because I married the owner. Both are great. The Coach bag can take abuse. I've stuffed more than 5 books in it, as well as notepads and pens, and it never stretches.
You married the owner of Coach or the owner of the Coach bag? If you married the owner of Coach, let this person know that I spent $280 on a Coach purse for my wife (my Christmas bonus) Last February. In appreciation for the large purchase, a little something thrown my way would be great. ( i'm thinking a little French clutch?)
-----Added 25/8/2008 at 04 : 34 : 32-----
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stare At The Sun View Post
I have one class a night, 4 nights a week. So no, I won't be carrying more then one book, and a notebook.
I concur, most master's programmes tend to be book light... focusing more on the progression of intellect rather than the building of fundamentals of undergrad.

Last edited by Leto; 08-25-2008 at 12:39 PM.. Reason: Automerged Doublepost
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Old 08-25-2008, 12:58 PM   #31 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stare At The Sun View Post
@ the messenger bag haters

Some people do enjoy fashion/being in style.

If its not your "bag" don't hate.

I am digging the fossil ones though
No hate here, but I haven't cared about styles/fads since middle school.
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Old 08-26-2008, 08:54 AM   #32 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Stare At The Sun View Post
I was just hoping to get the thoughts of TFP on this new trend.

I'm going to grad school this fall, and as silly as it sounds, I'd like to look the part.

However, it's surprisingly hard to find a messenger bag in my price range (less than 100 dollars) with a good vintage/distressed look, in black.

So does anyone know any good places to shop for one?
Too bad I didn't see this sooner. I just received a fantastic brand new yet already "distressed" messenger bag as a present for playing in someone's wedding, and I doubt I'll use it myself. Could have sold it to you dirt cheap.
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Quote:
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it's better if you can ride without having to wonder if the guy in the car behind you is a sociopath, i find.
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Old 08-26-2008, 12:28 PM   #33 (permalink)
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spinelust I am interested!!
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Old 08-26-2008, 03:47 PM   #34 (permalink)
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As a backpack person myself, I hold comfort and functionality above fashion. In fact, fashion is often a negative in my book, even when it meets my requirements for comfort and functionality. I dunno, call me crazy. These days, I try not to carry anything in my pockets, let alone in a bag.
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Old 08-26-2008, 04:09 PM   #35 (permalink)
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Leto... the addidas gym bag. Wow. I'd forgotten those things. Doing some cursory googling and I can't find a picture of one. I just remember they were all the rage but were highly impractical.

My love of the shoulder bag comes directly from Raiders of the Lost Arc. I wanted a leather bag just like Indiana's. I settled for something like this and used it all through University:

When I was a bike courier I used a messenger bag that looked like this:
.

Now I use a backpack because it distributes the weight of my laptop evenly across my back. When I don't have to worry about my laptop I still use a shoulder bag.


And I agree with Hal... I hate to carry shit in my pockets. I didn't mind when I was in Canada and would almost always have a coat or a jacket. But now that I rarely have to wear a jacket I don't want to have my pockets stuffed with phones, notebooks, keys, wallet, etc.
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Old 08-26-2008, 04:13 PM   #36 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by roachboy View Post
if you ride a bike the advantages of a messenger bag over a backpack are obvious. i don't find them comfortable to wander around with in general, but for carrying stuff on a bike, they're great. chances are, if you hate on the bags, you don't ride.
Wait, not so obvious to me...

I've been riding to and from school with many books using both my messenger bags and a backpack. Yes, something about it seems slightly better (I can't put my finger on it), but then when I've been carrying two textbooks and a lunch on that shoulder for four days straight, I have to use the backpack on the fifth day without fail. When I don't have to bring anything but water, my wallet/keys/phone and some pleasure reading, I just go with my camelbak which is the most comfortable of all. So, what am I missing... is it just the part about not feeling like a turtle?
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Old 08-26-2008, 04:44 PM   #37 (permalink)
 
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i've found that they distribute the weight better if you're riding with drop handlebars.
what annoys me about riding with a backpack mostly, though, is the amazing amount of sweat that accumulates under it. with a messenger bag, it's not as bad. actually i don't mind so much while i'm riding--it's when i take the thing off my back and my shirt makes contact with my back again, nice and cold....ew.
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Old 08-31-2008, 04:43 AM   #38 (permalink)
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Okay, good point about the sweat. I like the camelbak NOW that I'm just riding around for fun and expecting to come home and shower. I do not enjoy it as much when I'm headed to a day of classes and, worse, it's winter so I get overheated in my coat and then start freezing as soon as I stop. But I think maybe I also have not the greatest messenger bags. They are all just sort of the canvas long-strapped ones that are flimsy and not meant to hug your body at all. So sometimes, they will slip forward and I will have to stop (if I'm able) to keep from crashing because I have a heavy bag hanging around my neck getting all tangled in my legs. I need one of those nice huggy courier ones like Charlatan posted...

Stare At The Sun - that's a classy looking bag you got. Somehow, I was expecting something more in fashion and less classy from what you wrote earlier. Something like the elephant squid or a more colorful Timbuktu or Manhattan Portage one. But then again, I have strange tastes in general.
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Old 09-02-2008, 09:53 PM   #39 (permalink)
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^ I suppose I should have said "I want to look professional without looking like I'm trying to hard."

But then I get to my grad student class and I find its just a bunch of people, and noone is taking it anymore seriously than I am, and I feel pretty silly trying to be all professional.

*shrugs*
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Old 09-03-2008, 01:16 AM   #40 (permalink)
 
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I use the manila envelope my friend got for me the day I got my macbook air.
j/k I've got a slew of similar bags that are both laptop and not so laptop friendly. Nice pick at the end though - totally my style.
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