This summer when I was at Our Maker Life in Calgary, I had the privilege of meeting Laura from Jimmy Beans Wool. She spoke for a little bit at OML and I was super inspired by her story. As we were chatting with a smaller group of people afterwards, we were talking up Jimmy Beans’ Namaste bags. I had brought my Maker’s Tote Bag with me because it’s my everyday purse/knitting/computer bag and I love it and it’s perfect in so many ways. As we were chatting, I told her that I thought a fanny pack (I know, I’m cringing at the word, too, but stick with me here)-type bag that you could just store a skein of yarn to work on a project while in line or moving around the house. To my great delight, Laura showed us some pictures of an upcoming product, the Namaste Maker’s Hybrid Belt Bag, which was way cooler looking than what I had imagined. When the product was released, I got up the nerve to send an email to Laura (she gave us all her email address; how cool is that?!) to ask if they would send me a bag to review.
And they did!
So, here I am with my first review! So, for full disclosure. Jimmy Beans sent me the Belt Bag for free to try out and give my opinion about. All my opinions and words are my own and I received no other compensation other than the bag. It arrived about 6 weeks ago, but I wanted to give myself some time to put it to use before I wrote my review.
I had requested the Petal colour, which matches my tote bag and my Maker’s Portfolio. When it arrived (happy mail!), I took a little break from work to open it–I couldn’t wait! I loved the cute, sturdy, little box it came in (so handy for re-using! drawer organizers!!!).
I think one of my favourite things about both of my Namaste Maker’s bags is that they have just the right amount of pockets and compartments. Using other bags that have a gazillion pockets for “a place for everything,” I have found that they’re too restrictive, they don’t fit exactly the things that I have and want to keep there. And then I also don’t consistently put them back in their “perfect” spot. So, maybe they work for some people, but I’m just too lazy to be that organized. Also, I love a super easy pocket, like this one on the back of the belt bag.
It’s very handy to pop in your cell phone, keeps it close to your body and closes with a magnet!!! I love magnet closures… so handy.
Under the flap of the main compartment, there’s a zippered pocket that can act as a wallet with card slots, a cash compartment and room for whatever. The flap of the main compartment closes with snaps (and there are more magnets to hold the flap down).
The main compartment is where you would keep a skein of yarn and your project. I really wanted to love this and I think I definitely did when I was working on a small project and had to get up to check on dinner.
There was a super long line at camp registration this summer when I had just started a shawl and it would have been perfect for that. Once you get into larger projects or larger balls of yarn, this bag probably isn’t going to cut it for you. I agree with the choice made: sacrificing the space for a project for a slimmer bag so that it’s not so bulky makes it more versatile overall.
I am not the most fashion-forward person so I had some hesitation about wearing the belt bag as a belt bag in public, so I have mostly used it as a crossbody bag, to which it easily and smoothly converts. I saw a woman wearing a dress and a belt bag at a soccer game this fall, which gave me the courage to wear this bag as a belt bag this fall at The King’s University’s 40th Anniversary Banquet, where I worked helping with the silent auction and selling tickets for the bar. It was very handy to have a small bag with me to keep my keys, wallet, phone and a pen to have my hands free. I did not have time to knit, so I left my project at home.
Honestly, I mostly love it as a small purse. It is very easily convertible: the belt strap lengthens and shortens quickly and easily, and the claw clasps are both easy to handle and secure. So many details carefully considered!
For a true knitting bag, I love and use all the time my Maker’s Tote Bag and plenty of people have been raving about the Maker’s Backpack, but this little hybrid belt bag is a super cute option if you’re working on smaller projects with fine wool, which also makes a stylish, versatile little purse.
If you appreciated this review and would like to make a purchase at Jimmy Beans Wool, would you please tell them I referred you? Jimmy Beans has a referral program, so you can earn rewards when you refer people too! Their customer service is incredible and they have such great products, I’m sure you’ll be happy. Just use my email address: teddi[at]craftevangelist.ca. Thanks! Will you share a pin with your friends on Pinterest?