12/2 Debut: Icon, HLT Pouch 1 and 2, P.I.K.A., New Trucks + Ghost Whales, Wool Utility Cloth

The Icon messenger bag
The Icon in Black/Island Zippers.

This new stuff will be stocked and available for order on Monday, December 2nd at 8:00am Pacific Time (first 1/2 of the stock) and 1:00pm Pacific Time (second 1/2 of stock) in our last design debut of 2019. We recommend signing up on the product pages linked below to be notified via email the moment the item you’re interested in is stocked and available for order.

Here’s a category page with links to all of the new items.

Videos

 
Video of the Handy Little Thing (HLT) Pouch Size 1 and 2, Icon, Pick-Up Truck, Monster Truck

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Full Descriptions of New Bags, Pouches, and Accessories

The following bags, pouches, and accessories are will be stocked an ready to order on December 2nd:

Icon

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.

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 gracefully disappears down into a hidden rabbit hole in the side of the bag.

Colors:
Note: all colors will have a Cloud grey interior lining
Burnt Orange 525 Ballistic/Ultraviolet Zipper
Logic Blue 630 Recycled/Northwest Sky Zipper
Black 525 Ballistic/Black Zipper
Mars Red 525 Ballistic/Northwest Sky Zipper
Nebulous Grey 630 Recycled/Iberian Zipper
Black 525 Ballistic/Island Zipper
Seapine Green 630 Recycled/Ultraviolet Zipper
Alphaviolet 525 Ballistic/Wasabi Zipper
Black 525 Ballistic/Rainbow Zipper

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P.I.K.A.

p.i.k.a. pouch

The P.I.K.A. is a pouch designed to hold your Phone (yes, even the biggest of phones), ID/wallet, Keys, and a couple of other small Accessories (chapstick, mini flashlight or utility knife, chocolate).

It can be carried over-the-shoulder or cross-body with its included lightweight and low-profile 5/8″ / 15mm shoulder strap. Or, detach the shoulder strap, and use the included 8″ Black Key Strap to clip the P.I.K.A. to an O-ring in your larger backpack/briefcase/shoulder bag.

Colors:
Black 210 Ballistic
Coyote 210 Ballistic
Seapine Green 630 Recycled
Wasabi 200 Halcyon
Nebulous Grey 630 Recycled
Iberian 200 Halcyon
NW Sky 200 Halcyon
Island 200 Halcyon
Logic Blue 630 Recycled
Ultraviolet 200 Halcyon

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Handy Little Thing (HLT) Pouch

The HLT (Handy Little Thing) is a sweet clamshell organizer pouch with four zippered pockets, plenty of interior elastic and webbing loops (to retain cords and tools), and some clever ways to carry it. You can clip it to your Synik or other bag, to the seat pocket on the airplane, or hook your hand and thumb through it and use it as a write-in notebook holder or work-out-of tool pouch. It can be worn as an impromptu waist pack, sling bag, or cross-body bag, and it’s available in two sizes: Size 1 (fits in the Synik 22 bottom compartment or clips to the main compartment) and Size 2 (fits in the Synik 30 bottom compartment or clips to the main compartment).

Colors:
Iberian 200 Halcyon
Black 210 Ballistic
Island 200 Halcyon
Logic Blue 630 Recycled
Coyote 210 Ballistic
Wasabi 200 Halcyon
Nebulous Grey 630 Recycled
Ultraviolet 200 Halcyon
NW Sky 200 Halcyon
Seapine Green 630 Recycled

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Shepherd’s Wool Utility Cloth

The Shepherd’s Wool Utility Cloth is a 27/70 cm square of 23.5 micron fine, lightweight wool woven and dyed in Scotland with wool from New Zealand and Australia. As a travel accessory, it is superbly useful: it’s an ad hoc table cloth, a (very) minimalist blanket on a drafty airplane, a wrap to protect an impromptu purchase of a bottle of wine, a flag to wave at parting friends (or maybe partying friends). Properly tied around one’s neck, it can be as warm as a bulky scarf, yet it takes up almost no space whatsoever when folded in your bag or backpack.

Colors:
Neela Blue
Half-Light Purple
Saffron Gold
Matter Grey
True Black
Glasglow tartan
Home Modern tartan

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Pick-Up Truck

The Pick-Up Truck is the smallest of three sizes of our Truck tote. Next size up is the original Truck, and if you’ve got a lot to haul, check out the Monster Truck.

The Pick-Up is a great size for library books, a modest picnic for two, groceries for one, or a tote to bring breakfast, lunch, and dinner to work (ah, modern life…). It’s a scaled-down version of the original Truck, so everything about the Pick-Up is smaller: the center compartment can (just barely) accommodate four bottles of wine or cider, and the front and back pockets are big enough for small hand-held device like an iPad mini. Wait, did we say everything about it is smaller? Truth is, its handles remain the same length as the original, so you can still carry it over your shoulder. Cute originally meant smart, clever, and the Pick-Up is certainly that, but it’s also cute like adorable. Though we’re not sure we had to point that out.

Colors:
Dawn 210 Ballistic
Alphaviolet 525 Ballistic
Black 525 Ballistic
Coyote 210 Ballistic
Mars Red 525 Ballistic
Aubergine 525 Ballistic
Nebulous Grey 525 Ballistic
Island 210 Ballistic
Burnt Orange 525 Ballistic
Grass 210 Ballistic
Viridian 210 Ballistic
Deep Blue 525 Ballistic

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Monster Truck

The Monster Truck is a great tote for when the universe tasks you with carrying a lot of stuff: it’ll swallow it all whole, like a boa constrictor swallowing an elephant.

The Monster Truck is, as you might expect by the name, a bigger version of the original Truck. Comparing it to the original, we can tell you that the Monster is wider and deeper, though not taller. Fully loaded, a person of average height can still carry it by hand or on their shoulder. However, depending on the contents, one might want to consult their chiropractor first: at 38 liters of volume, one could easily fill it (say with river rocks or beach sand) so that it’d be impossible to pick up. We’re not sure why you’d want to do this, but if you did, rest assured the fabric, handles and stitching would take it in stride. A more prosaic and hopefully more plausible load might be a large motorcycle helmet and two gallon jugs of milk, or a week’s laundry.

Colors:
Black 525 Ballistic
Mars Red 525 Ballistic
Deep Blue 525 Ballistic
Burnt Orange 525 Ballistic
Nebulous Grey 525 Ballistic
Aubergine 525 Ballistic

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Color Zipper Ghost Whale Organizer Pouches

Our Color Zipper Ghost Whale Organizer Pouches are the same as our original Ghost Whale Organizer Pouches and 50% Recycled Nylon Ghost Whale Organizer Pouches…. except they are made exclusively out of black scrap fabric or mesh and feature Iberian, Wasabi, Ultraviolet, Northwest Sky, Island, or Coyote zippers.

Colors:
Iberian Zipper
Wasabi Zipper
Ultraviolet Zipper
Coyote Zipper
Island Zipper
Northwest Sky Zipper

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630d Recycled Ghost Whale Organizer Pouches

Our 50% Recycled Nylon Ghost Whale Organizer Pouches are the same as our original Ghost Whale Organizer Pouches and Color Zipper Ghost Whale Organizer Pouches… except they’re made out of our new 630d 50% pre-consumer recycled nylon fabric. (There’s other items available in our 630d as well: Travel Cubelet, HLT Pouch, P.I.K.A. Pouch.)

Our 630 denier nylon fabric is woven of 50% pre-consumer recycled nylon; both the recycled and non-recycled fiber is sourced in South Korea, and the fabric itself is woven, dyed and treated there in a bluesign® mill.

When the opportunity presented itself to utilize a 50% pre-consumer recycled nylon, we jumped on it: we received swatches, Taber (abrasion) tested them, performed various other tests, made sample bags, and were quite pleased with the results.

Previously, the only recycled fabrics out there have been recycled polyester. It’s not like we have something against polyester (PET) per se: it’s a very useful plastic for many applications, and its recyclability is great — endlessly turning pop bottles into fleece pullovers and back again is pretty cool. However, polyester’s performance as a bag/backpack fabric is notably subpar when compared to nylon.

Colors:
Logic Blue
Seapine Green
Nebulous Grey

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Travel Cubelet in 630d 50% Recycled Nylon

The same great Travel Cubelet, now available in 630d 50% Recycled Nylon options!

Colors:
Logic Blue
Seapine Green
Nebulous Grey

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Tom’s Firewood Carrier

Back in the mid 1970’s, I made a firewood carrier for my father and a couple extras for friends. The design was nothing new or revolutionary, but it did its job: schlepping 3-5 firewood logs from the woodshed to the hearth. When my father passed away in 2016, I inherited the original carrier I had made all those years before. Now, over 40 years later, I use the thing almost daily in the winter months.

Darcy posted a photo of the original firewood carrier on Instagram and a few people asked us if we’d offer it someday — so here it is. Just like the original version it’s made of heavy cotton canvas — a material I’ve been re-learning recently.

— Tom

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New Materials

This also marks the debut of two new materials:

 
630d 50% Recycled Nylon in colors Nebulous Grey, Seapine Green, Logic Blue

Our 630 denier nylon fabric is woven of 50% pre-consumer recycled nylon; both the recycled and non-recycled fiber is sourced in South Korea, and the fabric itself is woven, dyed and treated there in a bluesign mill.

When the opportunity presented itself to utilize a 50% pre-consumer recycled nylon, we jumped on it: we received swatches, Taber (abrasion) tested them, performed various other tests, made sample bags, and were quite pleased with the results. Previously, the only recycled fabrics out there have been recycled polyester. It’s not like we have something against polyester (PET) per se: it’s a very useful plastic for many applications, and its recyclability is great — endlessly turning pop bottles into fleece pullovers and back again is pretty cool. However, polyester’s performance as a bag/backpack fabric is notably subpar when compared to nylon.

We’re excited to offer a more environmentally friendly fabric, without sacrificing the long-term durability of nylon.

 
Color Zippers in #3 and #8 in Island, Wasabi, Coyote, Northwest Sky, Ultraviolet, and Iberian

So, why the Color Zippers, and why now? Here’s the scoop: though we continually work towards reducing fabric scrap — small pieces of fabric that are the result of cutting the fabric to make larger bags — we still generate some scrap in the process of making those larger bags. All of the color scrap that’s big enough to make Organizer Pouches is readily and hungrily consumed by our Clear, Fabric, Mesh, and other Organizer Pouches. Yet, at the end of the day, we find ourselves with a surplus of black fabric scrap — solid black Organizer Pouches just aren’t as popular as the color versions, and we understand why: a brightly colored Organizer Pouch is going to be easier to see and retrieve from the inside of a larger bag.

Tom’s solution: we use our black fabric scrap to make Ghost Whales with brightly colored zippers — this way, you get an easily visible pouch (you can even color organize/color code by zipper color!) and we get to use every piece of scrap we can. Win win, or so we hope!
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FAQ

Things we guess you might be wondering about:

 
If any of the 12/2 debut items sell out within the first few days, will you be able to make additional production runs that will ship with guaranteed delivery by or on 12/24?

That will be our goal. We’re still waiting on materials to make additional production runs of some of the debut items. If any of them sell out, we will post timely updates on when we’ll be able to restock them.

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Will you be offering these new designs forever?

Here’s where things are getting interesting: our production capacity will likely remain stable, and yet Tom and Nik are designing tons of new bags. Big bags, small bags, all kinds of bags. And we’re bringing in more fabrics, more colors, trying new stuff. It’s a lot of fun. And at the same time, we already make a large variety of colors, fabrics, and designs for a company our size.

We of course saw this coming, and have implemented various efforts to help us manage this. One of those efforts was the pre-order system; that system allows us to semi-retire some designs and bring them back for occasional pre-order production runs (if our data indicates it’s worth the production time to do so and we have the materials necessary).

Anyway, this is all to say: the 12/2 debuts will be available at least into early 2020 and possibly beyond. And at some point in 2020, it is likely we will retire or semi-retire some designs to make way for new designs that will be coming. We’ll give plenty of heads-up before retiring any designs.

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Will you offer other bags in 630d 50% Recycled Nylon?

Yes: we plan to offer more bags like the Side Effect, Side Kick, and Cafe Bags in 630d in early 2020.

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Will you offer other bags with color zippers?

We don’t have any plans to offer other bags or pouches besides the Icon and Color Zipper Ghost Whale Organizer pouches with color zippers. As you might imagine, between all of our colors of fabrics and color zippers, there could be a lot of options… too many options for our small company to manage, in fact!

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mm

TB Crew

We're the TOM BIHN crew: we design bags, make bags, ship bags, and answer questions about bags. Oh, and we collaborate on blog posts, too.

6 Comments

  1. Andy on 26 November 2019 10:26 am at 10:26 am

    While you may be worried about _too many options_ with the colored zippers, I think it’d be really nice to see colored zippers that match the interior colors on other black bags.

    Right now, if you released, for example, a 400d Halcyon Synik 30 with island 200d Halcyon interior and island zippers, I’d drop everything to get my hands on one.

    • mm TB Crew on 26 November 2019 10:43 am at 10:43 am

      Noted! We *are* thinking about how we might be able to offer more color zipper items without Countron protesting the ballooning number of SKUs 🙂

  2. Julia on 26 November 2019 11:15 am at 11:15 am

    Holy cow! So many beautiful, functional, versatile bags! Colors in ways (zippers) I was never expecting! I am excited to see a crossover shoulder bag like the Icon, and hope to see more in the future.

    While we are all considering, can we get updated videos comparing pouches (PIKA vs Cubelet vs …) as well as small bags (PCSB, HLT, side kick, side effect)? I find these incredibly useful and helpful to discern what makes each of these offerings unique as well as get a better handle on size. Most specifically comparing all face, width, and depth similar to the Aeronaut videos would be amazing.

    Really great to see you continue to highlight a focus on sustainability and recycling/reusing materials. Thank you.

    • mm TB Crew on 26 November 2019 12:04 pm at 12:04 pm

      Those are great ideas for videos: I’ll add them to the list… thinking early 2020! – Darcy

  3. Colin on 26 November 2019 6:27 pm at 6:27 pm

    I hope that the PCSB is on the list of 630d 50% Recycled Nylon (HRN?) candidates!

    • mm TB Crew on 27 November 2019 2:10 pm at 2:10 pm

      That’s a good idea.

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News Briefs

Now available for the first time in 525d ballistic nylon: Aeronaut 30 and Maker’s Bag. Coming soon: Aeronaut 45.

We’re retiring our Road Buddy Duffel 36 and Road Buddy Duffel 60 to make way for new designs. If you’ve been thinking about a Road Buddy, you may want to order soon, as we won’t be making further production runs.

We’ve updated our Planet page with additional efforts: we’re operationally carbon neutral, members of 1% For The Planet, we offer a vegetarian company lunch, and over 80% of our materials are bluesign® and/or OEKO-TEX® certified.

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