Monday, July 25, 2011

Chicago and Camera Bag

I just got word that I'll be traveling back to Chicago this Fall for a conference. Actually, it's near the time that I was out there two years ago. Coincidence? Maybe. Lucky? Definitely. As soon as I got word, the first place I contacted was Alinea. It was obviously way too early to book a reservation as they open their books at the first of the month, two months prior. For example, August 1st for the month of October and so forth. Since I couldn't book a reservation, I made sure all of my information was up-to-date (e.g. All prior dinners under the same name).

I was debating if I should dine at other fine dining establishments like L20 or RIA but I figured that if I went to other restaurants, I'll be wishing I was at Alinea. Besides, I already have two dinners there on file, why not make it a 3-peat. Maybe I can reach a VIP level someday. For now, I need to cross my fingers and pray to the food gods that I'll land another reservation at Alinea.

Since shooting with a dSLR, I've always been on the look out for a camera bag. I'm not talking about a bulky one that pros carry but one that was functional and chic at the same time. Something I can use for work but also carry when I go out to fancy restaurants. I finally found one by Celine called the Mini Luggage Tote. Unfortunately, when it was released in 2010, it was hard to come by. With only one Celine boutique in the U.S. (in Florida) and 70 stores worldwide, getting your hands on one of these bags was almost as hard as getting a Hermes Birkin. While major luxury retailers like Barney's and Neiman Marcus carry the brand, the bags are often sold before hitting the floor. It was said that the waiting list at a Celine store was 5 pages long! Well, my research skills came into play when I decided to make the investment and buy this bag. While others have waited at least 3 months on a wait list, it took me a mere 24 hours to find a luxury retailer with a few Celine Minis in stock. Within 2 days, my bag arrived just as I pictured it.

The dimensions for this bag is 12" x 12" x 7". The sides expand out so I can really store a lot of stuff like my big camera, wallet, scarf, phone, cosmetic bag, menus, etc. The interior is lined in leather and is buttery soft. The Mini comes in two different leathers, smooth calf and grainy. I got the smooth calf since it was more structured compared to the grainy leather. So far I love it and hope to give it a test run when we dine at e by Jose Andres next weekend. Can't wait!

Other stuff about this bag:
  • One exterior zippered pocket.
  • Gold tone hardware.
  • Zippered top and interior pockets for a cellphone and business cards.
  • Additional interior zipped pocket to secure other items.
  • Bags are made from the finest quality leathers.
  • The smooth calf tote comes with metal feet but slightly heavy.
  • Grainy leather has no metal feet; slouchy leather.
  • Made in Italy.


ericwalter said...

Cool stylish, attractive and evening clutch bag :)

Jhon Staphen said...

wow that's really stylish bag look very strong and but how their mention camera bag too? i cant get that point. thanks for posting.

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