I bit the bullet. After months of deliberation and arguing with myself, I finally ordered a dedicated camera bag.
Upon buying my DSLR with my Christmas money last January, the need for a camera bag never entered my mind. I had one. An ugly black canvas utilitarian bag purchased for $20 at some big box store. It perfectly fit our little camcorder, point and shoot, and all the necessary accessories. What more does one need?
Apparently, one does need more. My brand new fancy camera and two kit lenses didn’t fit in that tiny little bag. Plus, where was I to put the camcorder? It still needed a safe place to call home. After all, I had three crazy kids (ages 5, 3, and 1) that it needed to be protected from. So I started the search for a bigger bag.
I typed in a simple Google query “camera bag”. Lo and behold, mixed with the regular utilitarian bags was Epiphanie’s site. AMAZING! Beautiful purses in their own right PLUS all the padding and necessary compartments any photographer, much less a mommy who just wants to tote her camera everywhere, would ever need. Outstanding! My mind was made up. I clicked to go to the site.
Holy crap! These babies are expensive — well, much more than the $20 I paid for the ugly canvas bag at the aforementioned big box store. A new Google search began. Then Ebay. Wow. Was I really prepared to shell out that kind of cash for a camera bag?
I stumbled upon this super easy tutorial from Lil Blue Boo. I knew how to sew. I already had plenty of purses I could stash this in. So I ordered some laminated fabric (i.e. waterproof and easy clean) from The Fat Quarter Shop. Took me just a few hours to whip this puppy up. And it was glorious!
Fast forward six months: that little insert worked so smashingly well that I carry my camera everywhere with me. I’d worn out two cheap purses and was working on a third. I was at a crossroads — keep buying cheap purses to throw the insert in or break down and buy a dedicated camera bag.
I blame it on ClickinMoms, this amazing online photography forum I belong to. Someone had mentioned Jo Totes. In all my prior searching, I had not heard of that company. I had to check it out. They have gorgeous, fashionable “camera bags for ladies” as their website calls them. I call their products mid-range ($87 to $109). They come in several models and a bunch of different colors. I resisted the temptation to get a trendy, brilliantly colored purse and opted for chocolate brown. Timeless. Seasonless.
Helllooooo Betsey…… isn’t she beautiful? Ordered her Thursday and she arrived on Monday. She came beautifully packaged, including a dust bag.
What attention to detail. Even on the box!
I took her on a test run for a day of shopping/errands with my 2-year-old. Loaded full of everything (speedlight, miscellaneous accessories, camera w/ lens attached, additional 55-250 lens), she got a little heavy by the end of the day. But, it was a test. I wouldn’t normally carry all of my gear with me for an entire day of shopping.
I look forward to a long and blissful relationship with Betsey.