I really wanted to love the Meadowlark 21″ Rolling Duffel from Lilypond. I wanted it to be the bag to end all bags; to fulfill my every need in a carry-on; for people to see me walking through the airport and to point to the bag and ask what brand it was.
To be fair, it has all the elements to be all this and more, but somehow falls just short of being fantastic.
Lilypond is a relatively new company that has created a line of women’s bags, accessories and luggage. Their products are feminine without being “pink” and there are enough options in their product line that you could take any sort of a trip and Lilypond would be able to supply the gear for it.
I tested out the Meadowlark 21″ Carry-on Rolling Duffel and found that this bag has some unique features that make it stand out.
First, it has a clamshell opening so that there is just about equal space on either side of the bag. Though this means you have to open it up completely in order to access all of your items (rather than just opening the top and leaning it against your hotel room wall, like you would with most bags), the fact that I can separate my clothes from my accessories is great.
Each side has a zippered mesh enclosure to hold your items in place. I love the fact that these feature Neoprene – providing some give and allowing me to add souvenirs and other items and it will expand quite easily.
There are 3 outside pockets for easy access to items. I found that I only use the one smaller one at the top, however. It’s ideal for my quart-size bag of liquids and there’s also enough room for my sunglasses.
Given these great features, there are a couple of things that really need improving on this before I could give this my whole-hearted endorsement.
First, the front main compartment sags if it’s full. This forces the bag to lean back when it’s in a sitting position. Though it’s never fallen over for me, it appears as though it might. Also, it can sag so low that it will drag on the floor if I’m not holding the handle at a low angle when walking.
Second, I found that the telescoping handle gets stuck and I either have to tug on it quite hard to get it to telescope out or push hard to get it to go back in.
Many bags have adjustable straps on the outside in order to tighten the contents down and I would think that having these would alleviate the sagging issue.
All in all, this is an acceptable bag but it would be my favorite even if just the sagging issue were addressed.
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