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How To Buy A Quality Leather Briefcase

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How does a man buy a leather briefcase?

man leather briefcase

With so many options out there, how can you make a smart purchasing decision.

I mean, this isn’t like buying a drink.  A good leather briefcase or satchel is going to cost at least $300 and the better quality ones easily break the $500 barrier.  If you’re in the market for a larger bag with special feature – you could be spending close to $1000.

If you make a buying mistake here – it’s going to be an expensive one!

With this in mind I reached out to William Scott Forshaw of Maxwell Scott Italian Leather Bags.  We spent 25 minutes discussing the details a man should look for shopping for a high quality leather briefcase.

You can listen to (or download) the MP3 interview by using the player above.

Brown Leather Bag Italian

So what do we cover in this interview?

First – William walks you through the basics of understanding why a good leather bag costs at least $300 and the advantages of investing in a leather briefcase vs. a fake leather bag.

leather attache black briefcase

We also cover the types of leather bags, and which styles and color are more formal and which leather bags are made more for the casual dresser.

Listen to minute 6 to hear the most common mistake buyers make when choosing a bag size, and how to select the right briefcase for your needs.

mens tan briefcase

Listen closely at minute 3 as William will reveal to you what parts of the bag you need to inspect to ensure it’s going to last.

He then lays out why you’re going to need to spend at least $300 for a quality leather bag and unfortunately where some manufactures skimp to save money.

inside leather case

I also ask William to expand on which types of cases wear out sooner, and what styles a man should lean towards if he wants a briefcase that can take a heavy beating.

I was actually surprised to learn which type of leather bag was the most durable.  Listen to minute 10 to hear William cover this.

attache case hinge

We also cover the issue of commuting and briefcase weight.  Listen to Williams thoughts on how to properly carry a heavy briefcase without wheels at minute 13.

tan leather satchel

Again – 25 minutes of solid information on how to buy a briefcase.  Just click on the audio player above or save the file and listen at your convenience.

Thank you again to William and his team.  To view more of his company’s Italian Leather bags visit their website here http://www.maxwellscottbags.com

You might be interested as well to see quality US custom made men’s nylon bags.

 

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About Antonio

Antonio Centeno is President of ATailoredSuit.com and the founder of RealMenRealStyle.com. He has created over 700 articles & videos on men's style, blogs over at the Art of Manliness, and is the creator of the internet's best selling personal presentation course - A Man's Guide To Timeless Style. Antonio has studied clothing design in London, Hong Kong, and Bangkok. He is a former US Marine with an MBA from UT Austin and a BA from Cornell College. He loves to hear from old friends and make new ones.

  • farnarkel

    If you want an honest, extremely hard wearing leather bag go and see my mate Dave Munson at Saddleback Leather (www.saddlebackleather.com).

    And one thing that William Forshaw did not mention was the different quality of leathers – “Full Grain (the best), “Top Grain” and “Genuine Leather” (Suede). Again look at Saddleback’s webpage for “Leather 101″ which is an excellent description of leather quality. I have seen a lot of leather briefcases (in fact owned a few) that are marketed as “Genuine Leather” only to have them fall apart after a few years use. It would have been interesting to hear from William what kind of leather Maxwell Scott uses for their cases.

    I will admit that the Saddleback briefcases are probably more “macho” and not as refined as the products sold by Maxwell Scott, but boy, after a few years of use, they develop a lovely patina, and, if you use them to travel overseas for work like I do (I am a geologist and do a lot of field work), then the scars and markings that you pick up along the way really tell a story. When I walk into the Corporate Head Office with my Saddleback Briefcase in tow, all those lovely ladies in reception and HR give me the sly look, and I know the guys all eye my bag with envy.

    But don’t take my word for it go and have a look for yourself at the Saddleback website.

    Cheers

  • farnarkel

    If you want an honest, extremely hard wearing leather bag go and see my mate Dave Munson at Saddleback Leather (www.saddlebackleather.com).

    And one thing that William Forshaw did not mention was the different quality of leathers – “Full Grain (the best), “Top Grain” and “Genuine Leather” (Suede). Again look at Saddleback’s webpage for “Leather 101″ which is an excellent description of leather quality. I have seen a lot of leather briefcases (in fact owned a few) that are marketed as “Genuine Leather” only to have them fall apart after a few years use. It would have been interesting to hear from William what kind of leather Maxwell Scott uses for their cases.

    I will admit that the Saddleback briefcases are probably more “macho” and not as refined as the products sold by Maxwell Scott, but boy, after a few years of use, they develop a lovely patina, and, if you use them to travel overseas for work like I do (I am a geologist and do a lot of field work), then the scars and markings that you pick up along the way really tell a story. When I walk into the Corporate Head Office with my Saddleback Briefcase in tow, all those lovely ladies in reception and HR give me the sly look, and I know the guys all eye my bag with envy.

    But don’t take my word for it go and have a look for yourself at the Saddleback website.

    Cheers

  • rmrstyle

    @farnarkel Thanks for the great comment – I actually have bags from both companies and agree that Saddleback is a great durable bag as well. My only issue with Saddleback is that their styles are more casual than what a man in a suit would need for day-to-day use. Here is my video where I compare the two – youtu.be/28EmOSsgzKE

    My goal though for this post was to teach men the universal things they should look for when they shop for the right bag for their needs.

  • William Forshaw

    @farnarkel Hi,

    Thank for the info re saddleback – i have seen these before and aware of Mexican leather processes.

    I most apologise, but i must has missed this very important detail out!

    We do also infact use full grain leather (as most top manufacturers in the world do!). However, our stunning Italian leather differs a little. We purchase ours from one of the finest and most well respected tanneries in the heart of Italy (it took me 3 years to find the right tannery). Its tanned using the bark of chestnut trees and can take up to 60 days (to get it just right). Most leathers only take 3 or 4 days to tan. Our signature “Maxwell Scott” leather develops over time and looks amazing. All you have to do is see it close up – and you will know exactly what I’m talking about (plus we add a few secret incredients)! It has a very sweet smell and gets a lot of attention from colleagues and friends.

    Please email if you need any further clarification or further questions.

    Regards – William Forshaw

  • Arkhangael

    It’s terrifying enough to say that every single young adult I see had replaced the briefcase with either their laptop case (deadliest of sins), the satchel – postman like – which is acceptable, or the backpack, inherited from Europeans consultants flooding the market. Backpack with suits. Is this reality?
    I’ll try and stick to the leather briefcase as long as possible. There is no need to swap to something less stylish. James Bond would agree.

  • rmrstyle

    @Arkhangael Good points, although I think that the word “terrifying” should be reserved for sea monsters and large asteroids headed for Earth, not men’s cases :)