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Solar Solution

In the BlackBerry age, it's a common problem: When you need them most, electronic devices can fall victim to what addicts consider their greatest weakness--their inability to run 24/7 without plugging in for a charge.

Thanks to a line of bags from Noon Solar, you can now charge your devices while walking to the subway or taking a weekend camping trip. As the company's name indicates, its totes, purses and messenger bags have solar panels that wire to a battery pack with A/C output so that phones, PDAs and iPods can charge when you're not chained to your desk. (On those days, you can stick the bag next to the window and save the company a few bucks on electricity.) And the lithium ion battery pack ensures that as long as you've spent a little time in the sun, you can charge your device later in lowlight or twilight. All the while you can revel in the fact that you are doing your part to reduce your carbon footprint --while upping your style factor.

Other solar paneled bags and briefcases have emerged on the market, but most of them resemble either a small solar panel with handles or bulky computer backpacks. Noon Solar uses luscious leathers that are heavy metal-free and tanned and hand-dyed with sustainable natural substances like walnut and pomegranate. The flexible solar panel is well incorporated into one side of the bag and graphically interesting enough to wear facing outward, so you can charge as you walk.

That said, Noon Solar's wares are stylish but casual and won't exactly coordinate with a Savile Row suit. But their bags are ideal for those times when you want to be out of the office and still connected. Find the August ($412) and other styles including male-oriented bags at noonsolar.com.

Associate Editor

Melissa Maleske

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