Vendors are beginning to accept the idea that women like, need, and use gadgets, too. While we can use the same gadgets that men do, sometimes we’d like our bags and accessories to be a bit different – perhaps smaller, maybe a bit more colorful. knomo London makes “perfect urban accessories to carry your devices,” like this Aurora Zip Tote. While they make gear for both men and women, this bag is definitely designed for women to carry a laptop, papers, even a small purse in. Let’s give it a look.
The Aurora has a lightweight quilted nylon exterior with black Saffiano (faux leather) trim. The quilted fabric has a silky feel and a sheen. The bag is available in black or berry quilted fabric. I obviously received the berry. The front has a zippered pocket that can hold cards or a cellphone (see top photo). A silver-toned metal badge in the middle of this pocket displays the knomo name.
There are two carry handles that are attached to the bag with large, silver-toned metal buttons. These straps have a 4.25″ drop to the top of the bag. They’re made of the faux leather, and they are rounded and cushioned.
In addition to the attached handles, the Aurora has a removable shoulder strap. It’s made of 1.5″ wide belting. There are two, large, lobster-claw clips to attach the strap to the silver metal D-rings on the bag. The strap is adjustable with the metal buckle, seen in the photo, above. It adjusts from to 29.5″ to 52″, including the clips. You can carry the bag as a shoulder or crossbody bag. The strap has no padding, but it’s wide enough to spread out the weight of the bag a bit on your shoulder.
The sides and bottom of the Aurora have a black, breakaway zipper that allows the bag to be expanded when you need to carry a larger load. The zipper has plastic teeth and a metal pull. When closed the bag is about 1.5″ thick.
The bag unzips to about 5″ deep. The zipper breaks open at the top to allow for full expansion. The sides and bottom of the expanded bag seem to be made of the same material used for the exterior, but it is thinner and not quilted.
There’s a zippered top, shown pull out of the top of the collapsed bag. It also has a breakaway zipper with plastic teeth and a metal pull, so the top can be completely opened. The panel pushes down into the collapsed bag, and it keeps the contents of your bag secure. It doesn’t completely close the length of the bag, so small items could fall out.
There’s a stiff panel at the bottom of the bag that flips up out of the way when the bag is collapsed, as seen here. You push it down into the bottom of the bag to form a sturdy, stable bottom when the bag is expanded.
The back wall of the bag has a laptop compartment with a snap tab (made from the faux leather) closure. The front of the compartment is made of a thinly-padded, quilted piece of the interior fabric. The back of the compartment has no padding other than what’s offered by the exterior wall of the bag.
The compartment will accommodate up to a 15″ laptop. My husband’s 15″ MacBook Pro work computer fit into the compartment. My 13″ MBP fit with room to spare. You can see there are two snaps on the front of the compartment to adjust for the thickness of the computer. A piece of the faux leather covers the backs of the snaps to protect your laptop from scratches.
There’s a large zippered pocket on the inside front wall. It’s big enough to hold your wallet, keys, cables, or the like. You’ll notice a white label inside. This label is the knomo TRACKER. The label has a unique ID number (obscured with a blue bar in this photo) and both UK and USA phone numbers. If you misplace your bag, the finder can call one of these numbers and knomo will be able to trace the bag back to you. (If you’ve first registered your bag with knomo.)
The knomo London Aurora Zip Tote is a stylish bag without being too trendy. It’s business-like without being severe. I like that it’s expandable, so you can zip it down when you need to carry only a laptop and a couple of small accessories. Or you can expand it to a large tote when you need to throw other things – shoes, a lunch, a big stack of books or papers – in with your laptop. I wish it had a couple more organizer pockets inside, and maybe a couple of pen loops. The front faux leather pocket could use a couple of changes, too. It’s not quite big enough to hold an iPhone in a case, and I fear that the metal zipper, while attractive, could scratch my phone’s screen. Because you can wear it as a crossbody bag to spread out the weight of the loaded bag across your back, the Aurora is pretty comfortable to carry. All in all, the knomo Aurora is an attractive, useful laptop bag for women.