Friday, 20 May 2016

An interesting approach to luggage

Whilst visiting SPIN in Manchester I came across the Carradice stand with a great array of bags from the famous Lancashire maker of saddle bags and a wide range of bike luggage. You can find Carradice on Facebook at:

There were traditional bags in the still-as-good-as-it-gets cotton duck material, there were the quality workmanship and there were touches of a modern-retro feel. They've managed to produce cotton duck bags on new colours and there is plenty of Harris Tweed but for the real traditionalist there is still the original black.

For the more weight conscious there are bags made from Cordura, still tough and water resistant and in a range of models and styles. There are bags to fit to your saddle, to front and rear racks and of course as befits a British maker there are bags to fit the luggage block of the Brompton. You can read all about the current range of luggage from Carradice at their website here.

What really caught my eye, and got me talking to the representative on the stand was a whole new range of bags under a new brand name, UPSO.

Photograph of UPSO bags on the stand at SPIN Manchester
UPSO bags at SPIN Manchester

These bags are made in the same factory, cut and sewn using the same equipment but the standout features are:

  • They are constructed from heavy duty, waterproof, recycled lorry tarpaulins
  • Each bag is unique with the colours and design or the material being used to create a brand new and eye-catching aesthetic
  • There are brand new styles of bags including seat-packs and bags suitable to use away from the bike
The bags, see picture above, look good. They stand out and the re-use of material is likely to be popular among environmentally conscious cyclists. I've not had a chance to use the bags but the nature of the material, it's similarity to those used in other well known waterproof bags suggest that they will function and look good for a long time.

I had a good chat with the rep from Carradice who was happy to explain the design and production values and processes, including the relatively complex business of recycling the material and making sure it was suitable for purpose. The whole approach of re-use of materials and of new designs and each item being individual appeals usually appeals to me and should I have the chance I'd love to head over to Nelson one day and meet the designers and makers at Carradice.

Were I in the market to replace my current pannier bags then I'd certainly be heading over the hills to Nelson! You can read much more about the new range of UPSO bags here or from the front page of the Carradice of Nelson website here.

I'll be posting about some other interesting finds from SPIN over the next few days....

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