Wolverine 1000 Mile Boots Six Month Review – Uh Oh! Sole Separation!

My Wolverine 1000 mile boots have been lovely up to now. You can read my initial review here. I have worn them quite a bit for daily use. They have been comfortable and have even gone on a few hikes. Hardly 1000 miles of walking. The leather upper is in fantastic shape.


I glanced down and the sole is separating! I’m not quite sure how this could happen on such an expensive pair of boots. You would think this would NEVER happen on a pair of boots labeled “1000 Mile Boots.”

I emailed customer service so we’ll see what happens.

If you are wondering why they seem so white-ish it is because I just walked through some dusty sand.

Update: the email back from customer service.

Good morning TJ,

Thank you for your email regarding your Wolverines footwear.  Unfortunately, Leather outsoles do not typically last as long as a rubber outsole (especially on today’s modern surfaces). If the leather outsole gets soaked through, it will accelerate the breakdown of the material.  We do generally recommend that either taps, topey, or a rubber outsole be put on the boots to prolong the life of the sole.

At this time, we do not have a repair program for the footwear but do recommend a local cobbler.  The boots are a true welt construction so the repair is relatively easy.  Once you do have them resoled, please send me a copy of your receipt and we will be happy to reimburse you for half of your repair costs.

I hope this helps. Please let me know if you have any other questions !

Wolverine Consumer Relations

So it seems that if you truly want boots that will last 1000 miles you are going to need something else. Bummer. These are beautiful boots. It’s nice of them to pay at least half the cost. I think I’ll put Vibrams on.

When I asked what soles they recommend they responded with this…

Good morning,

We do not have a certain brand of rubber soles that we suggest, however typically shoe cobblers will have a selection of various rubber soles. You will find that a rubber sole will last longer than a leather sole since the leather soles will wear down much more quickly when exposed to wet/rainy conditions.

Thank you,

Wolverine Customer Relations

I’m a little sad that the leather welt sole has limited use and can’t handle water. Whatever. Everything has pros and cons.

IMG_0667 IMG_0669 IMG_0672 IMG_0664 IMG_0665 IMG_0666Have you had any issues with your 1000 Mile Boots?


In Portland With The Basader Messer Bag – A Teaser


This lovely week sees me in Portland Oregon for work. I was fortunate enough to bring along the absolutely gorgeous bag from Basader ($300). While I have not concluded a review of the bag yet, here  is a short montage from this evening’s excursion.




Basader-Messer-Bag-in-Brown-keychainIn summation, the Basader Messer Briefcase is proving – so far – to be a well-made and beautiful briefcase suited for business and casual use while erring on the side of fantastically classy.


Davis Leatherworks Field Notes Cover – $17 to $25

The Davis Leatherworks Field Notes Cover by Chris Davis is a well made, simple, and least expensive option for sheathing your favorite little notebook in some nice leather. At prices between $17 to $25 this cover is a bargain when compared with covers from Field Notes and others especially because it comes with a Field Notes notebook preinstalled! Continue reading “Davis Leatherworks Field Notes Cover – $17 to $25”

Saddleback Leather Keychain Giveaway!


Saddleback-Leather-Keychain-GiveawayThere is this dark coffee brown Saddleback Leather Keychain that’s been languishing unused for some months now. Time to do something with it!

UPDATE: The winner has been chosen from the comments. Congratulations Rust!

To win this keychain and all the glory and fame that comes with it you must simply post below a link to your next leather purchase and why you like that item so much. The winner will be selected at random. It will be interesting to see what everyone is planning to get next!

The drawing will conclude on April 21st, 2013 where the winner will be announced to claim their rightful and prestigious place in history as BestLeather.org’s first giveaway winner.


Mmmm… New Leather Products From Marlondo Leather

Ma, the owner of Marlondo Leather, has been busy the last few months redesigning their website and product line to be more durable and usable. It’s gone well as you can see. Marlondo Leather has upgraded the quality of leather they use (imported from the United States), added durable pigskin lining, and implemented some hefty brass hardware.

Expect to see more from Marlondo in the coming months as they get all the products listed on their website and develop new ones. I love that golden brown hue of leather. Sign me up!

It will be interesting to get our hands on the new product line to examine the changes in construction and material. The photos sure do look amazing.

The Marlondo Leather Messenger Briefcase – no longer offeredMarlondo Leather Briefcase Thin

The Marlondo Classic Briefcase – $398 to $428Marlondo Leather Briefcase Classic

The Marlondo Leather Classic Briefcase (single space) – $269 to $339

Marlondo Leather Briefcase Single

The Marlondo Leather Brass Buckle Belt – $44.50 to $47Marlondo Leather Briefcase Belt

Passport Wallet – $24

Marlondo Leather leather_passport_wallet_4_1024x1024

 What do you think?

Traveling With The Saddleback Leather Medium Waterbag

I really enjoyed traveling with the Saddleback Leather Medium Waterbag along with my Saddleback Leather Medium Thin Briefcase. I didn’t have any problems except for one small plane where the waterbag didn’t fit in the overhead compartment and had to be checked. I could easily carry a weeks worth of clothes.


If I had to express one concern it would be the weight. Trying packing the waterbag from A concourse to D concourse at DFW, I don’t suggest it unless you are hardcore (which I am, I don’t mind at all). It can get tiring.


What would really be nice is if the medium and large sizes came with the same sort of backpack conversions that the briefcases come with (update: it does).



Custom Leather Work – A Few Thoughts On Getting Your Desired Product


Recently I had a custom leather strap made for my favorite Seiko 007 automatic (which is a rock solid tank, I might add). I’m not that happy with it and some of that is my fault, so here’s some thoughts on custom leather work to prevent making my same mistakes and being unhappy.

I don’t plan to complain because I don’t think it will be helpful for this particular proprieter. Some people welcome constructive criticism and some take it like water on a duck’s back. I sense he is the latter.

This brings up the first point: Ask to see examples of previous work. I didn’t do this. You know what assuming leads to…

Second: Get the order in writing. I asked for a light tan Zulu strap, custom sized, and one band hole. What I got was a dark brown, wrong-sized, wrong-fitting, poorly stitched, conventional strap.

Third: Ask for a time target and hold them to it. I kinda-sorta did this but didn’t ask for a hard date and I didn’t check up consistently. 2 months went by. I called to see “how it was going” and wonder-of-wonders my band was being “started” that day because they had been so busy. Yeah right. What I should have done is asked for a reasonable time frame that the project would take.

Fourth: Don’t rush it. Otherwise it may look like this. Crap.

Fifth: Be clear with your expectations of quality. Obviously I failed. What kind of thread you would like? What kind of leather? Their best work? Spare no expense? Keep in budget? Be precise. This will be very helpful to the craftsmen who may not know or feel comfortable asking these questions.

Sixth: Pay attention to the questions asked. These will reflect the competence (and perhaps intelligence) of the craftsmen in question. My Mr. Leatherworker was hurried and not easy to talk with. Another mental warning I shouldn’t have ignored.

For your information, this lesson cost me $35. This fraying thread occurred nearly a week after I took the strap.






Instead of struggling as I did, save yourself the effort and check out these well-respected leather watch band makers.

BJ Straps




Paolo18 Straps

Vintager Straps

In The Wild: Jamin’s Moroccan Made iPad Satchel

Often I’ll be sitting somewhere pounding away on my laptop when I catch the flash of brown leather breezing by and subsequently get up and go chase down the confused owner. It usually goes one of two ways, they think I’m a weirdo and leave, or we talk leather for a while and I get a few photos.


This cool little bag is Jamin’s satchel for carrying his notepad, pens, iPad, Leatherman, and maybe even a slim book.

IMG_2457It was handmade (obviously) in Morocco and given to Jamin as a gift. I know some people who demand only the straightest of stitching and finest of construction and may turn their nose up at this unique piece, but I would not. How cool is leather hand-fashioned into a satchel by someone on the other side of the world? It tells a vague story about the realm outside our little world. There are other people who live different lives and have different priorities that make things. Chances are these profits fed a family.


I was somewhat surprised by how much one could fit in the satchel.



This is a great color that I expect will wear very nicely.



Even though some of the angles aren’t quite right the satchel will last quite a while. The stitching is heavy duty and well done. None of it was fraying. The leather was also quite heavy and supple.

Quite a deal for $60!

In The Wild: The Ashwood

Ashwood Leather Briefcase side view

I met this interesting fellow from England (just moved) during a layover in Seattle. He had purchased this fairly heavy duty Ashwood Briefcase in England before moving to the US.

Ashwood leather briefcase

Amazon only had this variation. The price isn’t bad at $180. I only had a few minutes with the bag but I did get a good feel on the leather and it felt substantial. Couldn’t tell off the bat if it was full grain or top grain, but it was fairly thick.

Visually, the strap d rings seem like weak points. Personally I’m not a fan of the faux buckles, though they are faster to latch. They seem cheesy to me.

Ashwood Leather Briefcase side view

Would you rock it?