If you’re the kind of driver that likes to get away and hit apexes other rarely get to, then you’re going to need a good weekender bag
There are plenty of cars, chiefly convertibles which sometimes have extremely limited carrying capacity. Think early Porsche Boxsters, Mercedes AMG SLKs, hard top Mazda MX5s and you get the idea. These vehicles, admittedly slightly less so on the Boxster, only had enough space for soft luggage making the weekender a perfect companion. Desire any more space in your bag then you’re doing it wrong.
So what makes a great weekender bag? Well for us it’s all about quality, craftsmanship, design, and uniqueness. Leather makes perfect sense and adds plenty of style to the occasion although as you’ll see below not a prerequisite, enough compartments to gain quick access to documents, and if you’re in a real classic and want the authentic experience, a map. How quaint!
So these are the bags, in no particular order, we’ve found which tick enough of the boxes to qualify as a great weekender.
Boston Bag, by Head Porter
If you’re into everything to do with carrying and protecting your items, Head Porter is a Japanese brand you need to know. The Japanese do ‘conservative with a twist’ so well, it gives their products a sense of timelessness. It also helps that their products are made in Japan, a cache which carries significant weight.
The Boston Bag is a relatively new item in the Head Porter range which you won’t feel precious about throwing in the back. Made of 420D Nylon OX PVC with a 201 Nylon liner, it should withstand a bit of throwing around, while the fastener puller is made of leather.
In terms of carrying, it includes a snap button pocket on the long edge and zipper pockets on both shorter edges, with a zipper pocket inside.
For further details, visit the Head Porter website.
1st Edition Travel Bag, by Hardgraft
Hardgraft are a company doing things their own way, but always with effortless style. If you want a weekender with just the right balance of style and heritage, the 1st Edition Travel Bag is your bag. Combining a clever mix of materials, vegetable tan leather and robust wool, it will never be mistaken for something mass produced.
The distinct lack of outer pockets doesn’t make it easy to quickly grab items, however, keep the top straps open and a handy side pocket becomes available. If you’re traveling by air, Hardgraft say the bag will fit usual onboard luggage requirements.
With a full metal zip opening, smart reinforcements including a stiffened floor the 1st Edition Travel Bag is made to last. In fact Hardgraft products are made in Italy with materials sourced locally and from around Europe, supporting various industries and keeping alive a long standing heritage.
For further details, visit the Hardgraft website.
The 3 Day Leather Duffle, by Best Made
Best Made is all about the adventure that awaits outdoors, but it’s their commitment to products which are made to last and can be handed down which rings a bell with us.
Made in the USA using leather from Italy, the 3 Day Leather Duffle bag is simple in its design, yet has a sense of charm and elegance about it. It could be the solid brass hardware set against the vegetable tanned 1.6 mm cow leather exterior, or the perfectly offset water-resistant lining with reinforced stitching. Whatever the reason, it works. Carrying versatility comes via a removable wool felt shoulder strap. Expect a lovely patina to form over time.
For further details, visit the Best Made Co website.
Flight Holdall, by Chapman Bags
Chapman produce a range of bags in Cumbria, England originally made for fishing and shooting by the now retired John Chapman himself. The brand has expanded beyond the initial brief since then and their Flight Holdall showcases what they can do.
Their version of the weekender is made with British dyed and bonded waterproof cotton canvas matched with British leather handles and corner panels, brass feet, and an adjustable and detachable shoulder strap. An exterior zip pocket means small items can be stowed for quick access, and when you’re not in the car for that getaway, the Flight Holdall meets current IATA carry-on regulations.
For further details, visit the Chapman Bags website.
Torino Duffle bag, by Floto
Although Floto bags are made in Italy, the brand itself is very much American. Identifying a need for high quality bags that don’t simply trade on brand equity, Joe Floto started and has since built Floto into a business which prides itself on craftsmanship.
Their catalogue is full of wonderful weekenders and we’ve chosen the Torino Duffle bag as our choice for those road trips away. The addition of a number of easy to access exterior compartments makes this perfect for the front or rear seats, or a quick boot/trunk or frunk grab if necessary.
Made with full grain calfskin leather vegetable tanned in Tuscany, Italy the bag comes in a range of colours. As proud as Floto are of their leathers and provenance, they are similarly proud of the inner lining, made of 8 oz cotton duck canvas in South Carolina, USA. Functionally the bag supports a detachable shoulder strap, reinforced handles and stainless steel hardware.
For further details, visit the Floto website.