The KAVU Rope bag ($50) is by no means new to KAVU’s line. It’s been out for quite a few years. The biggest question I have (before I dive into the review) is why did I wait until now to get on board with this handsome, practical overly-functional carry-all that is slightly bigger (and cooler) than a purse but not as big as backpack with a shoulder strap made from actual rock climbing rope?
What I liked
Concept. Is it a backpack a-la one-strap style? Is it a purse? What? What is is? It’s both! Regardless of how I use it, I can easily spin it from my back to my front without having to take it off.
Size. The Kavu Rope bag has enough space to fit everything I need for the day and then some. About 90 percent of the time I use it as a “purse” and 100 percent of the time it has enough capacity to carry everything I need. I’ve taken it on three domestic flights and it has enough room to carry my wallet, phone, Kindle and iPad mini—along with the usual stuff one would carry in a purse like lip balm, hand cream, iPod, ear buds, blah, blah, blah. The beauty of the Kavu Rope bag is that even when it’s loaded down, it doesn’t feel heavy or like it’s compressing my spinal discs because of where and how it sits on my back.
Crazy cool organization for everyday use and travel. Kavu had a lot of forethought with the Rope Bag. It has five different storage compartments in total: Two large separate secured compartments, an internal secured pocket (for a passport or something), an exterior secured pocket (this is likely intended for a smartphone but mine barely fits so I just use it for my wallet) and a second small exterior pocket that is secured with Velcro.
It even works for bike commuting short distances. What I mean by short distances is in the less than three miles range. Because it doesn’t have a mesh back panel it will create some uncomfortable back sweat. Still, I have loaded up a book, wallet, phone, keys and rode to my favorite coffee shop. It even had enough capacity to hold a bike lock.
What could be better Nah, just something you need to know
This isn’t a ding but a cautionary tale. The Rope Bag is designed to be worn over the right shoulder only. If you wear it over the left shoulder the bag will sit kind of wonky. If you’re a left shoulder’er you’ll have to get on board with change. It’ll be worth it, trust me.
I’m pretty sure that in the ten-plus years that Gear Gals has been in existence, the Kavu Rope bag is closest thing to a “purse” that we have reviewed. While I use it as my everyday purse these days, I also use it for travel because it’s a functional bag that is durable, cheeky, unisex and the climbing rope shoulder strap is totally unique and cool. The organizational elements also cannot be beat.
And for that, the Kavu Rope bag is a Gear Gals Piece of Recommended Gear!