This weekend I had the delightful opportunity to shop for a laptop bag or case for my new work-issued MacBook Pro. My boss left the case finding up to me, which was an exciting proposition. I’ve never had a job where I had to be all official and transport my laptop around on a regular basis, so I didn’t own a proper bag.
I knew what I didn’t want.
I knew I didn’t want a briefcase style bag that weighed five pounds empty. I knew I probably didn’t want one with that scratchy nylon fabric that made a swoosh-swoosh noise when it moved against me. I didn’t want one that was on rollers, or a backpack style.
A little internet searching and I discovered what I wanted was a tote style bag.
A Ladies Tote to be precise.
Turns out, there’s a whole separate for section for women when it comes to laptop bags.
I decided to go to Staples and actually touch the bags I was considering buying. I’m glad I did, because it’s really hard to judge a bag by it’s internet profile. While all of the bags held the actual laptop nicely, not all of the bags had ample storage room for the power cord, mouse, headphones, and iPhone cord I will be carrying with me. I needed room for all of that ,and then I realized I also wanted one that could double as a purse/diaper bag. As I added all of my female specific requirements, I realized that bags like that did need their own section.
I ended up considering about five bags, made by names like Samsonite, Franklin Covey, Solo, Burton and Buxton. I tested shoulder straps and pocket size. I plotted out what I needed it to carry — computer, all components, wallet, diaper, wipes, and maybe a change of small boy clothes. Eventually, a winner emerged.
This bag will hold everything I need, and should keep it’s smooth shape. It doesn’t yell “Hey! I’ve got a laptop in here! Come grab me off of this distracted lady’s shoulder!” It’s got ample padding to keep the laptop safe, but it’s not very heavy when it’s empty. It’s got a pouch for my iPhone, spots for a few pens, and space for a notebook/file folders.The laptop portion and the section next to it zips securely shut. The pocket on the outside closes with only Velcro, for faster access.
Meet my winner (photo above), from the Solo Classics Collection. Mine’s magenta inside.