Kelly Moore Chapel Convertible Backpack Review

The other day I told you about my Epiphanie camera bag, and so today I want to tell you about the bag I actually use on a daily basis, the Kelly Moore Chapel Convertible Backpack (my little brother took these photos again).

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I bought this bag for a several big reasons:

1) I wanted a bag that I could wear on my back if I wanted to. Let’s face it, camera bags get heavy when you load them with gear and I knew the option of a backpack would help. I didn’t want a camera bag looking one though, so when Kelly Moore released this one, I couldn’t pass it up.

2) I also needed the bag to carry the basics I would need on a normal shoot; something like a family portrait session, engagement pictures, or a small/medium event. This bag carries my camera with 50mm 1.4 lens attached, plus one other lens, my flash, and all of my accessories. I love the organization offered by all of the different pockets (I’ll talk about that more in a minute) and it is truly a functional bag.

3) Lastly, I wanted a bag that didn’t look like a camera bag, but that I could wear while shooting. This fit the bill perfectly because of all the ways you can wear the bag. In the shot above, I am wearing it as a backpack, but it can also be worn messenger style or on your shoulder (I would normally take the straps I wasn’t using off, but I didn’t want to mess with them for these quick pics. That being said, the straps are super easy to take on and off, which is nice if you are the type of person to want to change them all the time).

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Where this bag really shines, however, is in the inside.

The back of the bag has the “Posey Pocket,” an invention by Kelly Moore to allow her bags to carry SD/CF cards, credit cards, and more, all in an organized manner.

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What I love most about this section of the bag are all the pockets within pockets. Seriously, it never ends!

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The other amazing thing about this bag is that whole inside section that holds your gear comes out! Yes, the whole thing is one self contained unit, which means you can also use this bag as just a regular backpack if you want to. The light purple color inside makes it easy to find your gear, and the moveable padded dividers make the bag completely customizable.

I am seriously in love with my Chapel Backpack and I use it all the time. I keep most of my gear in it because I know it will be safe and ready to go. I would highly recommend Kelly Moore Bags to anyone looking for a quality, functional, stylish camera bag. They even make them for men now!

Make no mistake, I am not being compensated for this review and I paid for my Kelly Moore bag, I just love it so much that I want to share this with others who may be looking for a great camera bag.


Epiphanie Clover Bag Review

The first time I saw an Epiphanie camera bag, I was at BlogHer in the summer of 2010. Karen Walrond, a.k.a Chookooloonks, and several other major bloggers/photographers had them, and I knew immediately that I needed one in my life too. My “lunchbox” looking camera bag was not doing it for me and I wanted more.

I browsed the styles for hours, saving up to buy the purple “Paris” bag (which Epiphanie no longer makes). When it arrived, it was much bigger than I expected and it only came with the one longer strap rather than the two that were shown online. Epiphanie apologized and immediately sent me the other strap.

Over the course of the next few months, I used my Paris bag a handful of times, so you can imagine my surprise when the clips on BOTH straps broke after just a few uses. When I called customer support, they told me they had never heard of this happening, something I now know to be false since several other people I’ve talked to had the same issue with the clips on the straps.

I contacted Epiphanie and they said that I couldn’t have a refund, but that they would send me replacement straps. I told them I was afraid the same thing would happen and I wanted an exchange for a bag that had permanently attached straps, and that is how the “Clover” came into my life.

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I picked this bag for the following reasons:

1) It was large, just like my former Paris bag.

2) It would hold ALL my gear: camera w/lens attached, plus 2-3 more lenses, an off camera flash, SD cards, extra batteries, etc. AND if I wanted, my MacBook Pro (which I spilled a cup of tea on earlier this year and killed, but that’s another story entirely).

3) It had attached straps, plus the extra, longer, padded strap. I wanted attached straps because I was not going to deal with another strap issue like before.

When I got the bag, I was very happy to finally have a bag that I felt lived up to the Epiphanies that I had seen on other women.

I had my 12 year old brother snap a few photos of me with the bag so you can see sizing  (because he is the only one who can operate my “big” camera and he wants to learn more about photography), but you’ll have to excuse the quality of the photos as he is just learning (but doing a great job I think!).

For sizing purposes, I am 5’3 (and apparently way tan from the summer sun).

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The bag is big, but not super huge. As I said, I wanted a bag to that would hold all my gear, especially for weddings.

I love the bright pink on the inside. It makes it easy to see your gear and is just plain pretty.

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This is a close up of the strap hook. This is the same hook that broke on both of my Paris bag straps, but I want to make it clear that I never had a problem with it on this bag. I am convinced that it was the shape of the other bag, super wide, that lent itself to stress on the clasps.

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What I realized after getting this bag is that what I really needed was more of an everyday camera bag– you know the ones you can tote around daily and look like a purse.

I recently sold my Clover in the hopes of using the money toward the Kelly Moore B-Hobo bag, which I’ve heard great things about. I own a Kelly Moore already, which I will review soon, so I already know that I trust their quality. I can’t fully recommend Epiphanie as a brand though, because although this Clover bag is great and has never given me any issues, my negative experience with the Paris bag leaves me apprehensive of the overall quality of their straps. I do know that many people have bags from Epiphanie and love them, but I feel it is important to be honest here. If you are looking at buying an Epiphanie bag, I would say to make sure you test it out right away so that if there are any issues, you’ll know within the return window (15 days). The mistake I made was not really using my Paris much after I got it, and so when the issues arrived, it had already been a couple of months.