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Current Caprice: Cocoon GridIt Organizer

January 8, 2011

I don’t make New Year’s resolutions.  I do, however, make New Year’s lists of things I’d like to have happen that only I am empowered to accomplish.  For 2011, one item on the list is to expand this underutilized blog by talking about (gasp!) things I like other than books.

For instance, my bags—pluralized because I tend to switch off fairly often, not out of any innate bag-houndishness (although I accumulate bags much more readily than, say, shoes), but because my daily bag needs vary greatly, usually based upon how extensive my paper-hauling needs are.  Sometime last year, the hassles of rotating all of my somehow terribly necessary junk from bag to bag led me to click “buy” on this Cocoon GridIt organizer ($19.28 as of this writing; also available on Levenger, although when I ordered from Amazon it was on discount and a couple of bucks cheaper).

After several months of use, I’m infatuated with this thing.  On an average day, my GridIt looks more or less like this:

My GridIt Organizer(For those wondering at the contents, it’s holding: an iPod touch, hand lotion, a pill case, Blistex, iPod headphones, a couple of pens, a mini-notebook, some hair pins, an all-important bottle of Visine, and a USB thumb drive.)

This is a 12″ by 8″ medium size model.  GridIt also makes a smaller and larger size.  I’m not sure how useful the smaller one would be unless I had a lot of smaller pieces to carry, and the bigger model (which is 15″ by 9″) seemed unlikely to fit into my smaller bags.

The back side of the GridIt has a zip pocket big enough to hold a slim mass market paperback, a hipster PDA, or whatever else you can imagine of a similar size.

Its elasticized straps, which have tiny rubber grippers woven in, hold a variety of miscellany securely and, most importantly, off the bottom of my bags, which consume miscellany as their primary food source.  It’s a vast improvement on enclosed pouches, which require digging around whenever you want to retrieve anything.  I chose the less sexy gray color over the black option to make it easier to see dark items.

I’ve found only two minor dampeners to my enthusiasm.  The first is that the GridIt is fairly heavy for its size.  I have a suspicion this is because the internal base has to be sturdy enough to support whatever contents get strapped onto it and resist bending with the elastic on the gripper side.  And it’s not a ridiculous weight by any means—the product info says 0.7 lbs., which seems about right—it’s just that it’s enough to be noticeable in a bag that you’re hauling around all day.  The second is that I’ve noticed that over time the straps have lost a tiny bit of their elasticity, which is probably to be expected.  It doesn’t seem like any of the bands will get stretched out beyond use any time soon, but it’s enough to be noticeable.

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