After much perusing of the different styles available, and reading pretty much every review/blog post about them on the internet, I finally decided on the newest bag, Lyric. I even love the name. In the end, I was most torn between Lola (the original Epiphanie) and Lyric. They share pretty much the same dimensions, with Lola having an 8" deep base compared to Lyric's 4". I was worried Lyric might be too small... but also concerned about Lola being too awkward on my 5'0" self. Also, since Lyric is the newest in the Epiphanie lineup, there just weren't as many reviews out there that showed just what it's capable of. Now that I have it and have used it some, I'm going to add my 2 cents to the blogosphere :)
Right off the bat, I was delighted with the extra care that went into packaging the bag. It came in this branded box that had me grinning from ear to ear with anticipation before even opening it.
Upon opening the box, I came face-to-face with a lovely little epiphany in the form of a quote-on-a-sticker. Just how did they know I already love that quote? And how did they know I'm a knitter? Look at that lovely knitted cowl in the photo! Oh, and a great thank-you card, also.
After reading other reviews and seeing that the bags come in a great zippered dust cover that matches the interior, I was expecting one in grey. Instead, I was happy to see mine was the same gorgeous plum colour as the bag itself.
Of course, once I took it out of the box, my cat, Penny, had to jump in and investigate :)
I have to say, I love absolutely everything about this bag. The exterior leather-like material is sooo soft and supple, you'd swear it was real. Never mind the gorgeous colour. I was torn between plum and slate blue, and I'm really happy with my decision. The braided handle feels good on my shoulder, and even when the bag is packed full it carries the weight very comfortably. Using the included cross-body strap makes it feel almost like I'm not carrying anything at all. With either strap, it's really easy to just reach into the bag and grab whatever I need.
The only "negative" thing I could think of to say is in regards to adjusting the interior, moveable sections. I put negative in quotation marks because it's not really a negative. You would have laughed watching me try to get these dividers into the position I wanted them. The velcro sides are able to stick anywhere in the interior of the bag, which allows for a customized fit for your gear. What that means is that when you try and get the dividers down to the bottom of the bag, they catch and stick everywhere! While it was a bit of a pain getting them where I wanted them, in the end, I'm glad they were so difficult because I know those dividers aren't going anywhere. They're going to stay in place and protect my equipment.
Hanging out in my snow and ice covered yard!
Great camera bling! This photo also most accurately shows the true plum colour of the bag.
Now the big question: Just how much can this bag hold? Even though Lyric is the "baby" of the family, it can pack a LOT of gear!
Here's what I can fit in mine: Canon T3i body with 50mm lens attached. Attached camera strap, including wireless remote. 18-55mm kit lens. 100-300mm telephoto lens. Canon Speedlite 430EX II. Fidelity Versapod Pro tripod. Cross body strap. Wristlet (or wallet). Cell phone. iPod Touch.
The rear pocket is big enough to hold both my Kobo Vox tablet, and my Kobo Touch eReader. In interior zippered pocket holds my gray card, lens cleaning solution and cloth. The small front pockets hold spare batteries for camera and flash, filters and SD card case. Sorry for the crummy iPod photo.
Here you can see how it all fits inside. My camera with a lens attached fits sideways into the empty space in the middle, with the attached strap tucked underneath the lens. My wristlet/wallet sits on top, or in the camera space when I have my camera around my neck.
So there you have it, my little review of Epiphanie's Lyric bag!