Friday, May 3, 2019

Reader Question: Leather Saddle Bag


A reader question for the community:
This question comes a bit out of season as I’ll use a straw bag or canvas tote for most of the summer. However, I would like to find a brown leather saddle bag for daily use (fall through spring). I’ve looked at Coach and Dooney Bourke but dislike the prominent “C” clasp on the Coach bag and I'm suspicious of the leather quality at Dooney Bourke after reading reviews online. Is it impossible to find a discreet (no loud branding) saddle bag of medium size that is equally appropriate for a trip abroad and a farmer’s market at home? 
A frustrated millennial

20 comments:

  1. Lotuff makes beautiful quality bags but if you don't want to spend that much on a bag, you might look at the Fossil line of Rachel totes and bags. I use a Rachel satchel handbag ( also crossbody) most of the time and I use the tote as well ( both in medium brown pebbled leather). Unless you purchase from a company like Lotuff, you need to beware that some trendy fashion companies are using cheap looking cowhide and coated leathers ( pvc coated?) and they are really tacky looking. I was very careful when purchasing my Fossil bags. Another reason I chose Fossil was because I could remove that silly brand key that hangs on their products. Why do people want to be walking advertisements? I hate brand names on my clothing and accessories.

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    1. I too hate brand names on my clothing. Precisely the reason why I prefer Lands' End and L.L. Bean polo shirts to those made by Lacoste, Ralph Lauren, and Brooks Brothers.

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    2. I quit shopping at LL Bean for the most part because they began stamping almost everything with their gaudy mountain logo. They even stamped their women's organic cotton oxford shirt with the Bean name on the bottom of the button placket and it was visible! I purchased an anorak last year but I was able to remove the logo with a seam ripper..otherwise, I would have sent it back. I hope they don't start on the canvas totes or the polo shirts.

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  2. Ghurka leather goods are great, even Orvis for women some vintage Hermes or Gucci perhaps!

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  3. Lotuff or Roots. Both make quality leather bags.

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    1. I second the Roots recommendation. The leather is excellent. I'm currently carrying their Village Tribe in Natural and I really love it.

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  4. Frank Clegg are hands down the best value bags for their craftsmanship, design, history and the fact that you deal with the family themselves.

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  5. In addition to the ones already posted, I've seen similar bags from both Frye and Ugg.

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  6. All great options above. You might want to peek at Filson and Pendleton as well.

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  7. Don'd go for the marketing-led brands: Frank Clegg and Connolly England would be great choices

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  8. The OP should look into Ettinger, a UK brand with beautifully well-made, by hand, leather goods. I have a wallet and I love it as much as I did the first day I started using it.

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  9. What about Rough and Tumble in Brunswick, Maine?

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  10. Bed Stu is a good brand for leather bags. I have and carry the Dixon, though an older model, and get a lot of compliments on it. Thick leather and a very sturdy strap.

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  11. I agree with Dan, Frank Clegg bags.

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  12. J. W. Hulme still made in Minnesota. They made Gokey's back in the preppy 1980's.

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  13. The "Transport totes" from Madewell are wonderful, and affordably priced at $168. Occasionally, they have sales, you might be able to get it 20-30% off. I have the backpack from the collection in "English saddle," the leather has a wonderful patina. It's lightweight yet sturdy, which many leather bags aren't. You can even have it blind embossed free of charge.

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  14. Agree with Neal, the Madewell tote is attractive, no branding and does seem to be "made well". Purchased one for my wife to use as a work tote...and now she uses it for everything.

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  15. I started with Lotuff to buy a bag, on the advice of the former muffyaldrich site, but realized that I could customize it at Frank Clegg. I now have five of them. Three duffels, a brief case and a shave kit. Chocolate shrunken, and chocolate goat for the shave kit. If you are in New England, you owe yourself a visit to see Frank and family at Fall River. You can see the whole line, meet Frank and the boys, and see the enterprise they have built. I feel certain they will have a bag to meet your needs.

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  16. You might want to take a peek at an English brand crootsengland.co.uk, they have a good range of leather totes/cartridge bags at reasonable prices (the exchange rate works in our favor) and they ship to the US.

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