One of my favorite parts of writing for BestLeather is being able to work and learn with family members and friends. The BestLeather editorial team’s trip to the Las Vegas trade shows was an eye opener, simply because it was myself, my older sister, and our father. Many companies commented on our relationship and how cool it was we were working together, and they loved the fact that we all cared about providing the best leather critique. Today we’re looking at a father-son leather business that offers quality products for small costs, specifically the North Star Leather Horween Leather Bifold Wallet.
Michael Batson, son of Steve Batson, said, “My dad started North Star Leather in 1969 doing street vending in Boston (fringe belts, floppy hats, and other “hippy” items). Little by little he grew the company and eventually moved to the rural south; the small town of Ruby, SC, population 354. That was more than 35 years ago and we’ve been making quality leather accessories here ever since. We have 15 employees (4 of whom are family) and are proud to have been able to keep making our products here in the USA without ever considering outsourcing production to cheaper countries.” This is another great example of a company who started years ago, building themselves up to be a successful craft leather company.
For more information on the North Star Leather company, head on over to their About Us page, you’ll find their lifetime warranty information, a little more company information, and several testimonials from North Star Leather’s customers.
At 4 ¼” x 3 7/8 “, the Horween Leather Bifold Wallet boasts six card pockets, a cash pocket, and two extra pockets behind the row of card pockets. This is definitely not a minimalist wallet, but it carries a lot and folds nicely due to the winged construction of the card pockets. The leather for each pocket is cut with a curve to access cards quickly and with ease. North Star uses a band-knife splitter to cut down on the bulk of each card sleeve, yet never sacrificing durability, which is definitely beneficial.
This wallet was not intended for men with small pockets. Although I really do appreciate the amount of storage it has, there is one issue I have found with this bifold. The large size and substantial girth of the bifold can be a little uncomfortable at times depending on your sitting situation. Most of the time when I will be seated for an extended period of time, I will take the wallet out and set it close by, just to give my left cheek (specifically) a rest. The Bifold can also take a pretty good beating. I have used it fairly hard for about 6 weeks now, cramming two debit cards, my military ID, several giftcards, two rewards cards, a time card, and my driver’s license in the card sleeves. In the inner pocket I stored my gym membership, flight medical, and some coffee shop stamp cards. Despite this intentional hard use, it still is functioning perfectly.
Made of Horween Chromexcel leather, it has a beautiful waxy sheen that improves with use. The wallet reviewed is the Red/Brown Chromexcel. and this color has a really nice hue. Over time it has developed into a darker shade of red, really showing its wear pleasingly. Like all Horween leather I have come across, it immediately feels like a quality product. The stiching provides a nice contrast to the burgundy tint of the leather, giving this wallet a classic look.
The North Star Leather’s Horween Leather Bifold Wallet is a great product. It has met my expectations easily, and it is always a good experience carrying this wallet. If you are someone who needs a lot of storage, but does not want to sacrifice ruggedness or durability, this bifold is a great choice. The best part about this wallet is its price. North Star Leather takes pride in keeping costs low for its customers. When you visit their website you’ll see that they offer this wallet in six different colors. At only $65.00, they put forth some very strong competition to larger, more expensive brands and definitely deserve your consideration.