January 3, 2007

Crumpler Bags: Australian For Insanely Customizable Bags


I can't believe I've been sitting on this for so long, sorry. [New Year's Resolution: clean out to-post file.]

Crumpler is an Australian bag company that made a name for itself by giving away beer, and lots of it. [Hey whatever works, right?] The capacity of each messenger bag is demonstrated by the number of bottles, six-packs, or cases it can hold.

Like any decent-to-great bag, with the addition of a changing pad and a wad of plastic grocery bags, it can also serve as a decent-to-great diaper bag.


What makes Crumplers unique, though, is the ability to make them unique. They have these insane customization centers set up in a few of their stores. They're like little workshops, where Crumpler craftspeople will consult with you and add basically any design you can come up with to your bag. And they do it right there. [Granted, it usually takes about a week, but they still do it right there.]

You can have someone's name, or a giant logo, or a butterfly, or a ninja, or a graphic you provide, whatever, I guess, cut from the wall of identical nylon, and appliqued onto the bag.

Obviously, when I saw this--and the first place was in Crumpler's shop just below 14th St, where Hudson turns into 8th Avenue, in the West Village--the first thing I asked about [dadnerd alert!] was getting them to whip up a tricked out changing pad that matched whatever design I was going to put on the bag. They were a little noncommittal, frankly, but I'll keep on them about it.

Last September, they had a bunch of artists create bags which were auctioned off for some charity or another; the flickr set shows a range of great designs. And all this for not that much money, as far as custom-sewn bags go. Check it out.

Crumpler Custom Bag Shop, 49 8th Avenue @ Horatio [crumplerbags.com]
Crumpler Art Bags auction on flickr [flickr]


Also check out RELoad bags, from Philadelphia. I would say that reload is the OG of super-custom messenger bags. http://www.reloadbags.com

[wow, no kidding. thanks -ed.]

We started off with an OiOi diaper bag, which was mildly gender neutral, but now that we're carrying more food and toys and less diapers, we've taken over my crumpler bag that i bought for myself on our last trip to Australia. Fortunately, I'm now using it much more that I did before. I highly recommend them -- and I got one of the higher capacity ones (i.e. 3 six packs).

I didn't see anything about customization when i was there in '04 though. sweet.

I bought a Crumpler laptop bag (Very Busy Man was the style) and they're great. I'm thinking of turning it into my diaper bag for the twins.

I have a 5 Million Dollar Crumpler camera bag that I adore. Their bags are just so well made.

Are there any customise shops in the UK?

no idea, but the one in NYC was gone when I walked by the other day.

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