My Camera Bag of Dreams: found (aka “A Porteen Gear review”)

When my vintage camera bag (including gear) was stolen last year, the seemingly endless searches for a replacement bag at first brought me nothing but frustration and, I confess, several tears for my beautiful and apparently irreplaceable bag. I was beginning to despair of ever finding anything that came close to what I wanted.

Then finally, at long last, I began to find some designs I liked…

When I shared the results of my searching in this blog post I discovered from all of your wonderful comments that I’m far from the only person struggling in search of the perfect camera bag. You’d think bag companies would begin to catch on to this gap in the market! ((Hello any bag designers reading this!! Take notice pleeease?!!))

After much musing, browsing and listing pros and cons for each of the bags on my shortlist, as well as all the bags that you shared in your extremely helpful comments on that post, I settled on… *drumroll* … Porteen Gear.

I was nervous as I was waiting for it to arrive. Had I made the right choice? But the second I saw this bag I was in love. It immediately felt like I’d owned it forever.

Porteen Gear camera bag

(Photo taken at: 1/1250, f/1.8, ISO 100)

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A hunt for the Camera Bag of Dreams

I have always had a great dislike for camera bags; their stiff, dull blackness, and their inability to be useful in day-to-day life. I often avoided them, to the point of wrapping my camera in a hat and shoving it in whichever bag I was using that day. Not good. This changed when I inherited my granddad’s camera bag, a well-worn, well-travelled faux leather piece that held everything I needed it to, looked nice, and didn’t scream “camera bag”. Problem solved.

A couple of months ago my camera was stolen (part of the reason for the recent lack of posts here, the wound has been too raw), my whole kit was gone, including my beloved bag. While working out how to replace my equipment I realised I had no idea where to find another bag I’d be happy with.

My first few searches left me feeling doomed. I was even considering using a baby bag as a substitute.. lots of space and doesn’t look like a camera bag, right? But then I began to find things I liked, particularly on the wonderful Etsy.

Here is my shortlist:

First is the basic, non-camera-bag-looking Domke bag. It’s cheaper than most of the others I’m drooling over, and would do the trick I think. But it doesn’t have me jumping up and down in glee.

Olive F-8 Small Shoulder Bag - Domke

Olive F-8 Small Shoulder Bag - Domke


Let’s leave the dull behind and move on to the Etsy selection. These are all in US dollars, and I’d have to take shipping into account, but look how pretty they are!

This one’s by Janine King Designs. I like its simplicity, but I have my doubts about it being big enough for what I need.


Digital SLR padded dSLR Messenger - Janine King

Digital SLR padded dSLR Messenger - by Janine King

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