Pad and Quill Roll Top Leather Backpack Review – $319

Who else remembers having a Jansport backpack or LL Bean backpack with their initials on it? That seemed to be the thing in high school, right? Well, now that I’m all grown up, I’m looking for something with a little more class and style — not to mention a slimmer and more chic design, so it doesn’t look like I’m carrying half of my body weight in it.

Well I’m happy to say that I found just that in the Roll Top Leather Backpack from Pad & Quill. It’s handsome yet rugged, minimal yet practical, and really will get the heads to turn (almost like in high school with those Grateful Dead bears or smiley face patches).



Kari and Brian, founders of Pad & Quill, are out to make their mark on the world of eCommerce. Instead of outsourcing their products to the lowest bidder, they have a strict code that they want all of their products to adhere to, which you can read about here. They have a 25-year warranty on their bags, showing their commitment to longevity. From their website:

“We think there are folks out there who have the same sense of awe as we do when they behold a beautiful thing. Who marvel at how a handful of seeds can become a majestic stand of Baltic Birch, that are then transformed, in artisan hands, into a gorgeous, organic product. There are friends who share our sense of adventure and love to have a bag they pull from their closet with 15 years of travel written upon it, and miles to go. Pad and Quill products will never resemble a trinket pulled from a fast food bag.”



The backpack is made from full-grain tumbled American bridle leather, hand-pounded copper rivets, parachute grade nylon stitching, sturdy zippers and solid nickel hardware. A small pocket on the exterior is about 5 x 7 inches and secures with single leather strap and nickel eye. The interior has a large open pocket that can hold up to a 15 inch laptop. There is also a smaller zippered compartment.


On one side of the backpack is a zippered access to the main bucket of the bag,


Their shoulder straps that are adjustable but not removable, along with a leather handle on top of the bag,


The dimensions of the bag are 12 inches wide x 16 inches length x 4.7 inches deep when closed, 25 inches long when unrolled. The bag weighs about 3 pounds empty.


As a medium sized bag, this bag is ideal for a day trip and possibly a minimal weekend. Although deep, The width and depth of the bag restrict it from holding a ton of gear which, in my opinion, is not a bad thing. Simple yet elegantly designed bags are sometimes meant to carry simple and minimal things.

The shoulder adjustable shoulder straps are ideal for shorter and taller people. I am 6 feet tall and my girlfriend is 5 feet tall and the design and look work great for both of us. Of course, Veronica will always say it works better for her!


The quality of this bag is top of the line and very durable. Out of the box, the tumbled leather has a nice broken-in and subtle flexibility to it which is nice since full grain leather takes serious time to break in! Again, the size is great for weekend/overnight travel and the bare necessities.

Being a tall guy, at first I thought the bag to look a little too small for my frame and suiting more to a shorter man or woman. However, I reminded myself that this bag is not a big, burly hiking or work bag but more of an everyday essentials bag. It fits 15″ laptops comfortably and can carry around work or school materials with ease.

One thing I disliked was the the body of the bag being a tad bit narrow and long, making it difficult to take things in and out. Although the side zipper is extremely helpful and aesthetically pleasing, it could be a hair longer to easier remove larger books or articles. But this is the only thing I would change and like anything, I will adapt to this over time where I will adjust to the bag rather than the other way around.



The Pad & Quill Roll Top Leather Backpack is an ideal companion for many occasions, including walks around the city, walks around the park, overnight trips or even as an everyday carry bag. I honestly can’t wait to see how this bad boy ages and wears in! At the price of a little bit above $300 I feel you are getting a good value for a handmade piece of such craftsmanship, design and detail.

Larger or taller men should definitely consider the size and use for this bag as it does not lend to hauling a large cargo. But, in my case, it’s a great thing to downsize the amount of stuff I take with me on a given excursion. In addition, the minimal size and classic color will lend great to any attire, casual or business. Check it out here.


Timberland Winnegance Leather Duffle Bag Review – $375

Winnegance is located on the coast of southern Maine, an area of tall pines and cold winters. Winnegance Lake and Creek are named after a Native American (Abenaki) word for the land bridge they used to portage their canoes across. This allowed the travelers to avoid the rough waters at the mouth of the Kennebec. And it’s after this beautiful but rugged country that Timberland has named their Winnegance Leather Duffle Bag. For good reason too. The product has the same attributes as the climate, both an elegant beauty and a toughness fit for even the harshest weather.


About Timberland

Timberland is one of the larger companies I’ve reviewed a leather product for. Working with them felt a little less personal on the delivery level, but this made no difference in my experience with the product itself, which earned high marks in both quality and usability. Timberland designs its products to match the outdoor New England lifestyle, products stylish enough for city streets but rugged enough for woodland trails.



The Winnegance Leather Duffle is made from 100% cow leather. The inner lining is a smooth cotton, gentle on electronics or other things you might want to put inside. The shoulder strap is made of a more rugged cotton. I’ve been using the bag on and off over the last five weeks, and I feel pretty confident in its durability. The brass brads, the stitching at the seams, and the heavy-duty zipper just make it feel tough, like it will take a lot of wear and tear. It’s more susceptible to scratches than the nylon duffle I used to travel with, but that just gives the leather more character and makes it feel more personalized.



The duffle is the ideal size for a carry-on item. It’s a tad on the small side, which I find really helpful in airports and dealing with the overhead bins of even small planes. (FYI, its dimensions are 18.5 by 11.8 by 9.4 inches.) I’m a bit of a minimalist, and I used it fairly easily for a weekend trip (it fit my compact laptop easily too). However, a more typical person might want to carry this along with a backpack or some other supplement. For example, this would sit nicely on top of a larger piece of roller luggage.

The top-haul handles make it easy to carry like a briefcase, and it felt natural to carry it that way. The shoulder strap is comfortable enough to carry it fully loaded across a large airport, which keeps your hands free, but this method isn’t comfortable enough for a day trip or anything too prolonged. The top strap also comes off easily if you feel like streamlining a bit.

The bag has one open-envelope outer pocket, which was perfect for tossing my phone and keys in while I passed through airport security. It has one main inner compartment, the sides of which have three smaller pockets in the walls in varying sizes. These are perfect for stashing toiletries, extra electronics cords, or whatever else you won’t want mixed in with your clothing and other big stuff.



The duffle comes from Timberland’s Winnegance Collection, which includes a matching briefcase, a smaller satchel, and a messenger bag. For some reason, this duffel is the only product in the Winnegance line that Timberland categorizes in their women’s line. Personally, I think it’s because the flourishes at the ends of the zipper make it look a little purse-like. But the leather seems like it could fit either gender easily enough. (They call the color a “sandstone” brown, and I like it quite a bit.) The leather has a premium look, and the quad-stitch detailing give it some extra flare. The design is pretty pleasing overall.


BestLeather Conclusion

Whether you’re more of a city-side, downtown tourist or an outdoor lover, Timberland’s Winnegance Leather Duffle Bag will make a solid companion. It has a straightforward but elegant design that’s hard not to love.