Disclosure: This bag was provided to me free of charge from Aide De Camp.
Feature image on left is © Brian Matiash

Not long ago I received the Evie bag from Aide De Camp to test out and review. I spent some quality time with this bag and wanted to share my thoughts! For those of you who follow my blog, you may already be aware of my frustrations with “girl” camera bags. Spoiler alert: this bag was a nice surprise! Keep reading to find out more.

The basics:

The Evie bag is a nice sized bag, and makes for a good large purse. It’s a little boxy at the bottom because of the camera insert, but not overwhelmingly so and definitely nothing you would not expect of a camera bag. Some things to note:

  • The long strap is detachable, so you can remove it if you prefer the shorter shoulder strap, or if you would like to replace it with something different. I found that the long strap was slightly padded and stretchy, but for long excursions or if I had a good amount of gear weighing the bag down, I might want to swap it out with something thicker and more padded.
  • The short strap is a nice size, and is also comfortable. But while this strap looks nice on the bag, it doesn’t have a lot of padding. Also, this strap is not detachable, which is slightly annoying because if you don’t want to use it at all, you can’t get rid of it.
  • The side pockets are large, which is great because it’s the go-to spot for my iPhone 6s Plus. They are also deep enough to stash things like spare change, memory cards, etc, but they don’t have zippers or anything to secure them.
  • With the camera insert inside the bag, there is extra “floppy” room at the top. This is helpful if you have crammed a lot of gear upright in the bag and need some extra space for it (such as a long lens that is taller than the camera insert), or if you need to stash a scarf or other accessory on the top above your camera gear.
  • The camera insert is completely removable, and the bag folds flat, so you can use it as a regular purse or even stash the camera insert into another bag altogether.
  • The camera insert is very well padded, and it comes with plenty of inserts to fully customize the interior. The velcro for the inserts runs only along the interior long edges of the insert, though, so you are unable to “stick” inserts to the short sides.
  • There are a TON of pockets: three with zippers (one in the front and two large ones on the interior), as well as four smaller non-zippered pockets on the inside, which are perfect for stashing things like batteries or other camera accessories. Plus there are two pockets on each edge of the bag, and lots of wiggle-room in the bag to stash other things as well.
  • The bag holds an iPad Air as well; there is no dedicated padded area for it, but I found that I could squeeze it in-between the camera insert and the side of the bag.

What it holds:

I decided to test out several different camera setups to see what I could fit. Of course, as with any shoulder bag, the more gear you carry, the heavier the bag will get, and the more uncomfortable it will become. My typical carry-around gear consists of either a one-camera-one-lens setup (oftentimes the Fuji X-T1 and 23mm lens), but sometimes I will also add another lens into my bag. I found this setup to work well, and the bag never felt too heavy. I also put together a few different Fuji setups below to show you some size comparisons with different lenses.

Note: These images only show the camera insert (for demonstration and visibility purposes); when the insert is inside the bag it can be difficult to see the items unless you are right over top of the bag, which is actually a good thing! It helps keep prying eyes from seeing all of your camera gear. :)

Gear in the above setup:

  • Fuji X-T1
  • Fuji 23mm lens

 

Gear in the above setup:

  • Fuji X-T1
  • Fuji 23mm lens
  • Fuji 56mm lens

 

Fuji X-T1 with Fuji 50-140mm (attached)

Fuji X-T1 with Fuji 50-140mm (attached)

Gear in the above setup:

  • Fuji X-T1
  • Fuji 50-140mm lens

Next I wanted to see how well it held my Canon gear. Here I am using the Canon 5D Mark III, which is a little bit wider than some of the other mid-range versions, such as the 70D or 60D (and I imagine a Rebel would probably fit even better).

Gear in the above setup:

  • Canon 5D Mark III
  • Canon 24-70mm lens

 

Gear in the above setup:

  • Canon 5D Mark III
  • Canon 24-70mm lens
  • Canon 70-200mm f/4L IS lens

Pros:

  • Very nice bag with good material
  • The longer strap can be swapped out with another strap
  • It has a sturdy, well-padded, removable camera insert
  • Plenty of inside pockets and places to hide or store accessories (both camera and personal items)
  • It does not look like a camera bag

Cons:

  • It is on the expensive side (appx $195 USD)
  • Both straps could use more padding for heavier setups or long excursions
  • The smaller strap is not detachable
  • The interior of the bag (not the camera insert) is black, which makes it difficult to locate items such as batteries or body/lens caps.

General Thoughts:

If you like bags that look like purses, and the price-tag is not an issue, then this is a good buy. It holds a good amount of camera gear for a day of shooting (camera, a lens or two, and batteries), with space leftover for your wallet, phone, iPad, and other items. Personally I’m not particularly fond of the classic black purse style of bag (it’s just not my style), so I will likely only use this bag when I want to carry some camera gear but also need to be dressed up for a special occasion (such as attending a wedding as a guest, or a nice dinner).

They also have other styles of bags, along with a Bailey camera insert pouch, which can be inserted into any of your existing purses (great for people like me, if you already have a bag you like but still want to safely carry around your gear).


For a limited time, Aide de Camp is offering free shipping for US customers on all orders at http://ADCbags.com.

Use the code USFREESHIPADC(Offer expires February 14, 2016)