A New Carry-on Bag–Plus, Some Home Renovation Updates In The Works

Welcome to the 762nd Metamorphosis Monday! I hope you’ve been having a relaxing Labor Day weekend. I’m running a tad behind due to computer issues. My computer this morning suddenly decided it didn’t want to let me access any of the photos, including the ones I needed for this post. I finally got it to work, hope it stays working. Computers are always a love/hate relationship, aren’t they?

Before we get into today’s post, I want to give you a brief update on some of the things I have planned for this month. It’s going to be a busy month! I have a somewhat major update I’ll be doing in the basement–more on that soon! Also, I’ve been getting estimates for shutters or 2-inch, faux wood blinds. The blinds that are currently here in the basement are very yellowed with age, so it’s time to update them.

I’ve decided to go with blinds since the company that made all the other shutters in my home is no longer in business. I don’t want to change to another shutter style even if it is here in the basement–plus, I think it would be nice for the next family who lives here to be able to fully raise up the blinds whenever they wish. That would maximize the light and backyard view for this space. After that, it will be time to get estimates for flooring.

Basement After Painting


The flooring may have to wait though because as soon as the upcoming basement updates are complete, I’m going to be in research and estimate-getting mode. I’m close to starting one of the two bath renovations I need to complete. So before this year is out, I hope to have at least one bath renovation underway and/or complete. As I get estimates, I may find I can save a lot if I renovate both bathrooms at the same time, which may mean waiting until spring to start those. I’m not sure my brain can deal with that much chaos at once, though. Ha!

Today, I have a very small update to share involving the luggage I normally use when I travel. Many years ago I purchased this Away carry-on bag. It has been on so many trips over the years–too many to count. I love it but there is one thing that it doesn’t have that I wish it did–a pocket on the front that will hold a laptop computer. That means when I travel, I have to lug my heavy laptop in my “personal item” bag throughout the Atlanta airport, OR, if I place it inside my Away carry-on, I have to open the suitcase in front of the world to retrieve it before going through security. I almost always travel with my laptop since I like to create blog posts while I’m away. Plus, it’s just nice having a computer when traveling.

Away Suitcase with Tiffany & Co. Tote


This is my BIG suitcase that I take when I take longer trips–like those that last 2 weeks or more. This suitcase has been to 10 different countries over the past few years and it is just starting to finally show a tiny bit of wear. I am amazed by how well it has stood up to the abuse checked luggage goes through!


My large suitcase is made by London Fog and I love, love, love its beautiful plaid design. I love plaid anyway, especially in these colors, and the plaid design makes it easy to spot on the luggage carousel at the end of a trip.

Weighing Suitcase Before Flying for Travel


So, I made a purchase a few days ago–a new carry-on bag. I went with another London Fog since my large London Fog has held up so beautifully. I purchased this cute suitcase in Marshalls. I think my original large London Fog was a find in HomeGoods/TJ Max, back in the day. They seem to always have a nice selection and the prices are excellent. This bag was $89.99 before tax. This morning I looked online and found similar London Fog bags available here: London Fog Carry-On Bags. Love their plaid designs!

London Fog Plaid Carry-On Bag


I’ve already tested it and my laptop comfortably fits in the front pocket. Yay! Away is now making suitcases with a front pocket for holding laptops, but sadly, they didn’t start that until after I had purchased my white carry-on from them.

London Fog Plaid Carry-On Bag


I love how this bag expands for additional room, as you can see in the photo below. It rolls and spins beautifully, and I think it’s a bit lighter than my Away bag which will make it easier to lift and place in overhead bins when flying.

Plaid Carry On Bag, London Fog


So that’s my little Before/After for this week. Do you have any trips planned for this fall? I have one short, 3-day trip planned later this month and I’m looking forward to sharing it with you! It will be the first time I use this little bag.

London Fog Plaid Carry-On Bag


Looking forward to all the great Before and Afters linked for this week’s Met Monday!

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  1. You definitely have a lot going on this month Susan! I love that suitcase, so pretty is the plaid. Love that it has a spot on the front for your laptop as well. I didn’t even know suitcases had a spot for a laptop. I’m not much of a traveler, just a country bumpkin-although not for the lack of wanting to. LOL I’ve only been on a few trips here in the US, but they were memorable. Glad you are taking some time for some fun and travel this month Susan! Hugs, Brenda

    • Thanks, Brenda! Well, with all the renovations I’ve been doing, I’ve become a homebody the last couple of years…not a lot of traveling. lol

  2. I love your new bag and the idea of having the laptop handy in the carry on. I travel frequently and always have my laptop, usually in a separate bag under my seat. In my experience, I would do 2 things: I would put the laptop in a “sleeve” to cushion it further because it is on the front of the bag and if there is turbulence it could bang in the overhead bin; and I would be sure that your bag is not too expanded because of the laptop in the front. They are getting so particular with carry on bags that I once had to smash all my stuff down as much as possible because they felt it was too high and stopped me.

    • I like the idea of padding it more–thanks for suggesting that! Whenever I fly, I’ve noticed the flight attendants always turn the bags in the overhead bins on their side, so I’ve started doing that when I put it up there. So that should help, but I still like the idea of some extra padding.
      Laura, if your laptop is in a separate bag, which I’m guessing is your “Personal Item” (think that’s what Delta calls it) where is your handbag? Is it in the same bag with the laptop?

      • I carry a small purse that I can fit inside the laptop bag under the seat because on Jet Blue you can only have two items now. LOL it takes some planning but I figured it out. Thanks for the information about the bag, I will check it out!

    • Laura, I just found a tag inside the suitcase that identifies it as Sheffield Style 1470. Hope that helps!

  3. How fortuitous that you showed the London Fog bag today as I’m also planning a short trip (or two) in the next month. Does your bag have a specific name and dimensions? First trip planned is for September 19 so plenty of time to order. Thank you.

    • I don’t see a name on it other than just the London Fog branding. I would just do a search for London Fog Carry-on Bags…maybe add the word plaid in there if you like that look. Trish, if you have a HomeGoods, TJ Max or Marshalls near you, def check there.

      • Thank you. Do have two of the stores in my area and will use it as an opportunity to browse and shop (for the bag and other items that might interest me as I peruse the stores). Thank you for the information. Trish

  4. Linda Practical Parsimony says

    When I flew to NY, I was stressed. A guy helped me with my bag because I had a orthopedic problem. I had put all my panties in the two expandable pockets on the front of the bag. When he suggested I had to take things out of those pockets so the carryon would fit, I was embarrassed, commenting that I hated to drag out my panties, he so politely turned his head while i rearranged the contents. Such a nice guy. That incident has made me wary of carryon bags that expand. I need a new carryon, so this was helpful. I bought mine before spinner wheels, so that is my goal.

    • Linda Practical Parsimony says

      an orthopedic

    • That’s how I feel when I put my laptop inside my older carryon and have to open it in front of the world to get it out for going through TSA. The last time, TSA didn’t even ask me to take it out even though I told them I had a laptop inside. I use CLEAR so was in the CLEAR line, so maybe they finally decided CLEAR members don’t need to do that. I also have Global Entry, so not sure if that made any difference. Still, I’m glad I’ll be able reach it easily now. Sorry you had to go through that, Linda! It’s def embarassing having your things exposed to the world.

      • Yes, if you have a Global Entry Number for domestic or international, or KTN (known Traveler Number) just for domestic, it is such a blessing. It is noted on your boarding pass when you make the reservation. In NY and FL they hand you a laminated card when you show your boarding pass, then they direct you to the line for that purpose. I don’t take off my shoes or take out my laptop, etc. At Easter the regular line had 50+ people and the line for Known Traveler had one. Anyone who travels would find it well worth the $75. I love it because I have a hip replacement and the shoe thing is a killer.

  5. How handy to have easy access to your laptop, and I love the black and white. Thanks for the party Susan~

  6. That’s a darling bag Susan! I hope it’ll have many wonderful trips with you! And good luck with all that renovating. You inspire me to get started with some of the updates we need to do here at the M&T homestead! Glad your computer stayed working – maybe it was just having too good a time on the holiday weekend. Thanks so much for hosting, and see you next time!

  7. Susan,
    Busy month, huh?
    Thanks again for hosting this wonderful party every week! I know how much time goes into doing so and I want you to know that it I truly appreciate it!! I hope you have a great week!

  8. Your London Fog suitcases are gorgeous! Thanks so much for having us over, Susan.

  9. Thanks for then suitcase info. I’ve wanted a carry-on roller with a laptop front so this is super helpful as always. XO

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