I got a new pannier for my bike, and I am really impressed! It is a gorgeous purple bag made by Basil that hooks right on my rack. Basil is a great company from Nederland that sells trendy bike accessories that make biking so much more fun.
My bag is the Jada-Shopper XL. It is adorable and water resistant and has bottle-bands, adjustable carrying straps, a large front zipper-pocket, side pockets, inner pockets, and side hooks that hide away in a zipper pouch when not on the bike. It is perfect for commuting to work or running to the market to pick up a few things. Matt and I took it to the farmers market, and I was able to get a load of veggies and a box of donuts inside. The inner pockets are also quite nice and allow for slipping in my wallet and phone if I don’t need my whole purse.
I have another Basil bag in the same pattern, but it is not quite as spacious. I struggled to fit my purse and lunch bag in it when I biked to work. With the new bag, that won’t be a problem at all. The adjustable cloth straps on the new bag also make it much more usable. The old bag has stiff, narrow handles that are just barely long enough to fit over my shoulder and cut in if any significant weight was in the bag.
Another plus to my new bag is the look. It looks nothing like a pannier. Instead it looks like a stylish tote bag that I am not embarrassed to carry anywhere. The purple pattern is subtle but attractive, and the material is flexible so it is easy to carry. There are also subtle reflective strips on either side of the bag that provide visibility in low light, while not getting in the way of the design. The zipper pouch also hides the rack hooks nicely, so I have no problem with the hooks digging into my side even with a heavy load. I can see myself using this bag both on and off the bike for a number of different activities, including trips to the gym, farmers market, grocery store, work, and my knitting group.
I would recommend this bag to any female bike commuter looking for a versatile and attractive pannier.