Inspiration Recreation

Saturday, September 5, 2015

Sole Society - Mason Oversized Travel Satchel

This November I'll be traveling to Austin, TX for a few days to attend a conference for work.  In the midst of arranging my hotel and flight accommodations, I started thinking ahead about what I should pack and realized I really needed to replace my old carry-on bag.  I wanted something that looks nice and professional but not like your typical travel bag.  I needed something roomy enough to pack for a 3 day trip without being too bulky and cumbersome, and I wanted more organization than a duffel style bag.  I think I found what I was looking for with the Mason bag from Sole Society!

                                     Sole Society Mason Oversized Travel Satchel ($79.95)
I purchased the bag in black but it also comes in cognac brown, grey, midnight blue, olive green, and oxblood.  All bag colors have the same gold hardware.  The black bag has what looks to be a micro snow leopard print lining.  The bag measures 13"H x 19 1/2"W x 7"D,  with a 8 3/4" handle drop and adjustable cross-body strap drop of  23".  Of the 13" bag height, the main compartment is about 9" and the bottom compartment 4".  Overall, the bag is a little smaller than my old 21" carry-on suitcase so there shouldn't be an issue with airlines trying to make me check it (I hate baggage claim!). 

I was a little concerned about whether the main compartment would be big enough when I ordered but after seeing it in person I'm convinced it will be room enough to pack several pieces of clothing (I don't have to pack heavy winter clothing).  Just to get an idea of how much I could possibly fit in this bag, I tried stuffing in 2 pairs of jeans, a skirt, 3 tops, a cardigan, laptop and charger, book, 2 pairs of flats, and a cosmetic bag and still had a little room to spare!
The bottom shoe compartment is probably my favorite part about the design of this bag.  I've never really liked the idea of packing my shoes and toiletries bag together with my clothes so this compartment will allow me to pack them separately.
I like that the bag looks like a big purse so it has a more sophisticated look than the typical travel bag.  The leopard print lining also gives it more of a purse feel.  I also like that it has an interior zipper pocket and slip pockets like a purse to hold my wallet, keys, phone, etc.  There is also one exterior slip pocket that will be convenient for keeping my boarding pass easily accessible at the airport. There is a detachable luggage tag hanging on one of the handles as well.
Although this bag is sold as a travel bag, I think it would also make a nice "fancy" gym bag or work bag if you have to carry a laptop, chargers, lots of paperwork, a change of shoes, etc in addition to your regular purse contents.

This bag is faux leather and has a smell that needs to air out so I'm glad I ordered it well in advance of my trip in November.  Whenever I get new bags, I usually just put a dryer sheet inside for a couple of weeks before using to get rid of the "new" smell.  I also wanted to note that this bag does have some structure but not enough to always keep it's shape.  I don't mind it because having less structure makes it more comfortable to wear cross-body.  I think it'll also make it easier to shove in to overhead compartments on the plane.
Overall, I'm pleased with my first Sole Society purchase.  I got my bag for $64 instead of $80 because you get 20% off you first order if you join their email list (shipping is free for all orders over $30)!  The quality of the bag is pretty good for faux leather but I would still recommend taking advantage of the 20% off first order discount or sales rather than paying full price.


  1. Does this fit underneath the seat in the airplane or did you have to put in in the overhead bin? I'm thinking of buying this but I'd like to be able to put all the items I need on a long haul flight in it so I would want to use this as a personal item or purse and put it under the seat in front of me.

  2. Hi Amber K. I've only used this bag on one trip so far. I flew American Airlines and I was able to store it in the overhead bin and underneath the seat. I had a couple of outfits & shoes, my laptop, and toiletries and it fit. I think whether or not you can get away with storing it under the seat depends on who you're flying with and how full the bag is. The fact that it's a soft-sided bag also allows you a little more wiggle room in that respect. I was actually able to avoid checking my bag TWICE on both of my crowded flights because the soft-sides allowed me to squeeze it in between two hard-shell carry-ons in the overhead bin and underneath the seat! Hope that helps.

  3. Was wondering since u posted this have you had any trouble with this as a carry on?

    1. I haven’t had any problems with using this bag as a carry-on with any of the airlines I’ve flown. Haven’t had to check it once in the nearly 3 years that I’ve had it so I can’t attest to how well it stands up to going through baggage claim.