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on October 13, 2011
At the time of this review, there are two distinct totes listed on this page. The Blue Q website lists them as "tote" and "shoulder tote". The "tote" is 8.5"w x 10.5"h x 4"d and is sort of an oversize lunch bag with straps at the top. The "shoulder tote" is 15"w x11"h x 6.25"d, has a chunky zipper on top, a small pocket on the front, straps that are sewn down the sides and under the bottom, and is shaped like a (very) small suitcase.

In short, the only thing these bags have in common is the brand and the materials - which might explain some of the "so roomy"/"much smaller than I expected" reviews. I can't believe Amazon only lists the size for the large bag. But then again, I can't believe they have them both listed on the same page without differentiating them.

Now on to the review. We've had the Marshall the Marshmallow (shoulder tote) bag for almost a year and it's been surprisingly handy. We use it for weekly swim lessons and it's been great: relatively water proof for when my daughter drags it through the shower, big enough zipper to get towels in and out, and easily identifiable amid a giant pile of kids' bags. It's starting to look a little worn, but chlorine ruins everything. It's also a good beach bag, though not really big enough for the whole family.

The design is colorful and fun (well, except for the slight creepiness of an anthropomorphized marshmallow roasting other anthropomorphized marshmallows) with a sort of kitschy Japanese/Retro look. Various extended family members keep trying to steal it - it's that cute and handy.

It's reasonably sturdy - for a woven polypropylene bag. Good for sleepovers or any other activity that requires a change of clothes (yoga class). I wouldn't fill it with library books or cans and expect it to hold.

4/5 stars because ultimately, it's still a plastic bag that's made in China. Yes, it's 95% post consumer waste and they donate 1%, but you're still paying $15 for a cute design.
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on November 28, 2011
First off, i DO really like this tote. The size. The pattern. The fact it's from recycled material. BUT....

Because it's from recycled plastic, it is a bit 'noisy'. Crunchy is the best way i can describe it. I bought it to use as a carry on when i go on a trip next month. Will stash some munchies in there along with a small purse and magazines. I'm sure everyone sitting in my area on the plane will know every time I get into it because of it's 'crunchiness'. (I don't know what other adjective to use to describe it)

Also, the zipper is wide and plastic. It is a bit difficult to zip and unzip. That may be because of the stiffness of the plastic, not really a big deal to me.

Overall, I'm pleased with the tote.
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on January 21, 2013
I like these totes because they suit what I need - a smallish tote (because I got yelled at by several types of medical personnel for carrying too much), but large enough to fit in a month planner, notebook, and when necessary, papers to grade.

On the somewhat negative side, they won't take a lot of abuse, which works for me because it reminds me not to carry so much. The material may also turn some people off; they have sort of a stiff, plasticky feel. They get less stiff with use, but stiffer in colder weather (we're on week 3 of below 15F.)

There's one exterior and no interior pockets. I like the various designs.

Bottom line - if you want a nice looking, basic tote and don't mind the feel or stiffness, they're a great deal. If you need something you can haul stuff and abuse, get something else.
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on April 10, 2011
Okay - they are expensive but they are 1) beautiful to look upon; 2) great ice-breaker in a crowd as sooner or later someone will ask about that "very cool bag" when we are stuck in an airport or in line at the store; 3) they hold a lot of heavy stuff without stress on the bag handles or the bag bottom. The bags are good quality, fantastic colors and fold up small and lightweight for that extra bag you need when shopping or traveling. I even checked one as luggage when returning from a recent trip to Italy full of dirty laundry so I could pack my purchases in my carry-on bag. Very sturdy material.

I purchased several of the Blue totes in different styles, sizes and colors, with some to use as grocery/shopping bags and others as birthday gift bags for friends; so far everyone loves the bag as much as the gift inside. Our city in CA allocates a charge for plastic grocery bags; my Blue will pay for itself after 30 trips to the grocery store this year.
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on September 12, 2011
Unique, eye-popping color and designs. It was difficult to choose just two. These bags are waterproof, tearproof, and unseemingly sturdy; and the zipper top is an added bonus. For these reasons, and for the cause (a small percentage supports the conservation work of The Nature Conservancy), these bags are worth the price.
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on June 16, 2013
I bought this bag to use around campus when I do not need my huge backpack. I am able to fit a 3 inch 3 ring binder, a standard sized anatomy text book, daily planner, and a zipper pouch (from the same company) and it still zips and doesn't feel like I have it way overloaded with weight. The best way to describe this material is like what you would get a really large bag of bird seed in. It's a very strong, laminated, woven type material and the color is so brilliant. I use it on my shoulder and it works perfectly. I find myself looking for the next one I want to buy because the price is so cheap and the bag really seems well made.
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on May 12, 2013
I bought this bag to take on a sailing trip, the size fits under the airline seat in front of you. I had other bags similar size, but this one zips closed. The material is thin but sturdy, like the reusable shopping bags. Very pretty design and color
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on October 23, 2012
Fits within Allegiant Air's new 'Free Personal Bag' size dimensions. The size is perfect to under the airline seat in front of you so it makes a great carry on. This is a perfect option for travel, i was able to squeeze a lot into this for a week away for my child without having to pay fees for luggage. It held up well, zipper is strong, stitching is strong and you can easily wipe it down if it gets dirty. Plus it looks nice too! A+
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on January 12, 2014
A lovely bag, well made and one anyone should be proud to carry. With all these gorgeous bags on the market now, there is no excuse for anyone to use a paper or plastic bag any longer - is there? This one is a good size, strong enough to carry anything but an engine motor and, heck, it might carry that. People tell me they forget and leave them at home. Okay, do like I do and put them in your trunk so then there's no excuse for forgetting. I've been using mine for about a decade now and don't accept paper or plastic any longer. So can you and help this poor, overworked planet.
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on March 25, 2013
I use them for groceries. They can hold at least ten cans of food and still fit more on top. They really hold weight well. The only thing I might change it to take the zipper out. They do not collect hair from my pets, they do not advertise some super store, and they are pretty.
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