I simply cannot help myself. I love real leather products for their look and their staying power. I can't think of anything else (apart from myself) that looks better the older it gets and the more it's battered around.
Of course, not all leather is the same. You can purchase a leather belt from a discount store that feels weak and wishy washy from the get-go. In such a case, you're not too surprised when the buckle holes begin to stretch and the stitching starts to fray.
At the other end of the spectrum, you have stuff like the products from Saddleback Leather. What other company do you know that boasts a hundred-year warranty? As Dave Munson, the owner of Saddleback Leather, says on its website: "If, for any reason, your piece doesn't live up to what we said it would, then contact us or have one of your descendants get ahold of one of my descendants and we'll take care of you."
I started my journey of discovery with Saddleback a few years ago, when I purchased an iPad case. I still get comments on this everywhere I go. Also, unlike my wife's and son's iPads ("protected" by regular cases), mine is still in pristine condition.
Another early purchase was my tow belt. I honestly believe that I will never need to purchase another belt as long as I live. These are so good that I bought one for my brother, one for my father-in-law, and one for my best friend as Christmas presents the year before last. To the best of my knowledge, these people haven't worn any other belt since that time.
I also have a little sleeve wallet, which holds my business cards. Of course, the pride of my collection is my messenger bag, which I take everywhere. This is perfect for slipping under the seat in front of you on an aircraft. Like the other products, it will last me the rest of my life. My inventor friend, Brian LaGrave, drools over this bag every time he visits me in my office.
A few weeks ago, my old wallet shrugged off this mortal coil, so I invested in a long trifold wallet. What can I say? I love it. Even though it's not small, it fits comfortably in the pocket in my cargo shorts. I've not tried it in the pocket of my jeans, but if it doesn't fit, I'll just have to wear cargo shorts all year round.
Every now and again, however, one does need to travel a little lighter. Thus, I'm currently doing my happy dance, because I just took delivery of a rather tasty little belt pouch.
This little beauty is ideal for those times when you need to store only a few small items, like some keys and a couple of credit cards. I'm currently wearing it in with a small notepad and pencil, a miniature tape measure, and a couple of screwdrivers (the essentials a young boy simply cannot be without).
Of course, I'm still lusting after a squared backpack (though the front pocket backpack is also rather tempting), and don't get me started on the various items of Saddleback luggage, such as water bags, duffel bags, travel cases, and suitcases.
All I'll need then is a pair of leather chaps to complete my collection. (I wonder if Saddleback makes custom items.) How about you? Is there any article of luggage or any accessories like wallets or belt pouches that you simply cannot do without?
— Max Maxfield, Editor of All Things Fun & Interesting