Stepping away from department store wallets and into the world of handcrafted, built-to-last goods is a difficult step. Even before I came to write for BestLeather, I had taken a dive and purchased multiple styles of high quality wallets, as I like rotation and variety. When it comes down to suggesting one wallet for friends and colleagues I give advice to, I’m torn between two styles – the traditional bifold, and slim front pocket designs. At that crossroad, the user ultimately will have to let me know which way they want to go. Tyler Condie of Rugged Material recently threw a wrench into my usual advice given. He developed the Rugged Material Slim Bifold that comfortably can carry large or small amounts of cards while remaining slim enough to carry in the front pocket of most men’s jeans.
Tyler Condie and the folks at Rugged Materials pride themselves in being able to make goods in the USA, guaranteed for life. Based out of Utah, Rugged Materials has been in the business of offering wallets, bags, and other leather accessories at a direct-to-consumer price. This means that instead of outsourcing production, they make their products in-house using materials made in the USA. This saves the consumers costs significantly and ensures a better value.
The slim bifold is constructed of two relatively thin pieces of Horween Chromexcel leather in burgundy. It is also offered in a variety of other Chromexcel colors. The aroma and quality of Horween Chromexcel is the perfect choice for Rugged Materials to utilize. The thin profile of the leather allows for flexibility while remaining strong and durable like full grain leather should be. Marine grade polyester thread is used to stitch together the pieces of leather. The interior sports a Made In USA stamp in the cash slot and a mountain logo on the exterior. Over my use, the exterior logo has started to fade or smear slightly, making me wish it was laser-burned like the logo on the messenger bag I gave first impressions on. Nonetheless, both logos are subtle and very appealing. The outside edges are nicely burnished and have held up over my use.
The inner setup of the wallet is where the slim characteristics of the bifold are accomplished. Going with a horizontal setup to the cards, as the card pockets stretch from accommodating multiple cards, they appear to be less likely to have cards slip out of the top of the wallet, and instead slip in towards each other. This is the idea behind Rugged Material’s design and so far it has proven to be functional in providing minimal layering that avoids unnecessary bulk. Each side sports two card pockets as well as a slot behind for storing extra cards. For my setup, I chose to put one card in each pocket and the rest of my cards behind in the bigger slots. You could easily stack two cards in each of the four slots, but I choose to carry a minimal amount of cards. For the cash slot, I don’t usually carry a lot of cash but over the course of use, I did at one time have 14 bills in and it did not add unnecessary bulk. At all times I was able to carry in front or rear pocket of jeans.
Comprehensively, the Rugged Material Slim Bifold Wallet is a great candidate to upgrade the wallet of yourself or a dear friend. The inner card setup is definitely a change from traditional wallets, but with good thought process towards its design. Priced at $60 I would consider it a bargain for those stepping away from department store wallets. At just $5 more, the same wallet but with RFID blocking materials can be purchased which is well worth the protection against card scan thefts. Accompanied by a lifetime warranty, this is the perfect gift for the holiday season or upcoming birthdays and celebrations. With the ability to arrive before Christmas, the RFID version of the wallet can also be purchased through Amazon.