Short version: Chances are you don’t need this serious of a bag for school. I mean, The Shed is about as serious as a bag can be. MissionWorkshop doesn’t make anything else. This is a true messenger bag, not your standard trendy Walmart special, and is without question, the highest-quality bag I’ve reviewed. But……it might not be for you. Sorry.
There are messenger bags and then there are bags messengers use. This is the latter of the two. But all that really means is that it’s high quality and can handle plenty of abuse. I’m totally serious about what I stated above: this is the highest-quality bag I’ve reviewed. However, it’s probably not for everyone. It’s on the large side.
This bag is designed to hold lots of stuff. My 17-inch notebooks swim in this thing. I bet it could seriously hold five or six full size laptops and that’s why you may want to consider different buying a different bag. It’s that big. But then again, maybe you need this much space. You could probably stuff an entire semester’s worth of textbooks in this bag. Best of all, all that weight doesn’t feel that bad thanks to the massive padded shoulder strap.
Unlike most regular messenger bags, this strap only works over one shoulder. The strap is somewhat short and the padded section is always at the top. This mean the bag hugs your back rather than swinging loosely at your side. It rides more like a backpack than a messenger bag this way.
It’s the quality materials that ultimately won me over. I’m reasonably confident that this bag will outlast me. The fabric is tough and the entire bag is lined in waterproof rubber. Your books won’t get wet in this bag. You could probably even throw some ice in the main compartment for an impromptu beer cooler.
The bag is somewhat short on internal organization, though. There isn’t a panel with dozens pockets designed to hold your pens, calculators, sun glasses, or other random things. There are however just enough pockets, with the main roll-top compartment, a smaller but still large pocket with several moderate-sized pockets, and then two small pockets on the front of the bag. That’s enough for me.
Again, this bag isn’t for everyone. It’s huge. However, there are smaller, less expensive versions of The Shed. The medium-sized Rummy runs $159 and and the small Monty rings in at $149. So there you have it. Three different sizes of an awesome messenger bag. Highly recommended.