Monday 4 April 2011

Touting the Tote

Back in another era, I was a rep for Bramwell Crafts. Part of my equipment was the tote. To tote around all the samples, catalogues and stuff that a girly rep could need. (Packed lunches, umbrella, spare know..).
When I stopped being a rep, in her normal generous way, my boss and friend Alison suggested that I keep it. And I did, and my gratitude is long lived I can tell you. This is not a comparative, reasoned sort of review, for I've never had any other tote. It's one and a half times as big as the DO Crafts tote (I compared it to another at the crop). This is not a brag, so much as a fact. And would explain why it has more pockets than a snooker table. There's one large one at outside front which contains pockets and elastic straps for pens and tools. There's a pocket outside on either side. One of these has a thick plastic back so that you can see into it from inside the bag. There's a pocket on top that has an address thingy and a couple of smaller pockets - for business cards and stuff like that? For me it's a phone, camera, car keys and purse. And then of course, there's the inside. It holds more than I can lift. When not in use, it sits quietly under the computer desk where whoever is at the computer uses it as a foot rest. I use it half full, at least fortnightly for taking all the workshop gear to the shop, and over fill it once a month to go to the crop. Honestly, right now, waiting to be unpacked are 2 12 x 12, 6 A5 and 2 A5 acrylic boxes, the guillotine and all the mess you see strewn on top when packing up properly got boring.
In it's five year life, it has been pushed and or pulled miles, up and down paths, escalators, and wheeled violently into people (sorry) and inanimate street furniture, door frames et al when I've been in a hurry and forgotten quite how wide it is! It's a bit grubby now, but nothing that a damp cloth doesn't fix.
It's had one service - Mr Dunnit had to add a new sprocket to the handle because it wouldn't go down as easily as I wanted it to. It's amazing. I hadn't really thought about how good it was until today, when Miss Dunnit fell over it as she backed away from my desk clutching her beloved sellotape. No harm done. She's OK too.
It's made by MIMI - Memories in Motion, Inc. And to be honest, I think they probably asked a lorra crafters before they committed to the design. The colour is of it's time though if you ask me - Lilac. But hey, it's not pink. I think, if I had to buy another, the colour would be secondary...but I'd quite like a houndstooth or a fancy schmancy tartan. Whatever, it's one of my great unsung hero type tools. Name one of yours then.


LuLu said...

Great tote!

My fave tool always changes - but corner rounders, scissors and tweezers are the tools I use constantly.

Meanwhile, I want to let you know about
my new 100th blog post giveaway.
The giveaway candy is perfect for AB artists and Art Journalers.
Please spread the word!


Kirsty.A said...

I have an acidic green Papermania tote nicknamed Shrek. I use it on a daily basis for work as I teach on 2 different sites and have no fixed classroom, and at crops. I love it, though the bottom foot fell off in the first month I had it so it doesn't stand upright very welll. I was lucky enough to get a matching desk tote recently 2nd hand. My desert island tool is my corner rounder punch too Lulu

misteejay said...

After falling into the trap of buying 'shoulder totes' - who can carry one of those over their shoulder when it's full of 12x12 PPs/CS/albums and tools? I bought a wheely crate from a DIY store and for £7 it is probably one of the best things I've ever bought for my crafting.

Toni :o)

Kate said...

Now Iknow why you have such a fab tote. I might investigate mimi totes, as Personal Immpressions and Create&craft versions have both failed to live up to my standards!

** Kate **

Sarn said...

My unsung hero on the crafting front is my husband . . . he who made the stamp shelves I showed in a recent WOYWW . . . and, after receiving SO MANY brownie points from all the comments on that post . . . is curently in the process of making additional shelving for all my Christmas stamps and possibly my punches! Wahooo!

Hugs, Sandra x

Bleubeard and Elizabeth said...

Love the non-review you did on this bag. Since I don't go to crops, I guess my favorite tool is my guillotine cutter, and my second favorite would be my crop-a-dile. But I can't possibly top that bag of yours, nor would I want to.

Liverpool Lou (Anne) said...

It certainly is a fantastic tote Julia - I'd have to have wheels on it though and find a big strong (handsome) man to help me get it in the car :-) Hmm now you're asking. I've had a quick look round my shelves and drawers and can't think of anythingreally, erm perhaps my piercing tool, it gets used for lot of things.
Anne xx

Artyjen said...

It looks like a useful tote to...well tote stuff around in! I'm very attached to my Vagabond at the mo! But a more mundane tool that I can't do without is a pair of engineers tweezers donated by my DH!
xoxo Sioux

Maarit at Violets Corner said...

Sounds like a fantastic tote, I want one too!

My fave tool is my very unexpensive hole punch, the type you need a hammer for, perfect when you want to be heard by everyone or feel that you're a hard working crafter... it could be something hormonal, but I won't go there!


Kathy said...

That is a tote and a half, Julia. I don't actually need such a thing as I'm not a travelling crafter!
My fave unsung hero? well, that's hard because my fave tools (cuttlebug, cropadile etc.) are anything but "unsung" so I'm going to choose my pointy tool as it's always on my desk - used for making holes (surprise!), holding or nudging things into place, twirling tight paper or wire coils and loads more.

Neet said...

Can't remember the name of one of my bags but it is great. I use it for my Cricut at the moment and it has endless things in it - great buy as it was only £12 at the QVC shop - it is really a cabin bag I think. I'll try to get it on my next WOYWW blog.

Dragon said...

Sure is a whopper!!! I don't have anything like that but I do love my pointy tool, tweezers and tonic scissors... See yo tomorrow

RosA said...

Fabulous tote Julia! I've just recently bought one on sale. Haven't used it yet because I don't do workshops very often but it will go out on it's maiden run at the end of the month and I am looking forward to trying it out. My most favourite serious tool would have to be my Cuttlebug and my very simple favourite one would be sharp cutting knife. Oh and a black inkpad!