Ordered messenger bag on line . Could not believe the quality of this product (first class ) when i opened the package .living in australia and traveling the world each year i have see many leather bags but not one would shine a light on the workmanship and quality of the leather .if ur looking for a mid sized leather bag ,look no further this is it /well done to all the people at saddleback ,u have set the standard .
- Dark Coffee Brown now shipping with lighter pigskin
- Low profile for crowded places
- Converts to backpack
- Removable interior divider
- 2 exterior pockets for sunglasses and water bottles. 1 for magazines
- 1 interior pocket for pens and 1 for cell phones
- 8 exterior D-Rings for lashing
- Attached interior key clip
- May cause spontaneous conversations
- No breakable parts, e.g. zippers, snaps, buttons, etc.
- Because of natural oils shade may vary
- Dimensions (approximate size):
- Adjustable strap length: 34 ½” - 59 ¼”
- Exterior: 12 ¾” W x 14 ½” H x 4 ¼” D
- Interior: 12 ½” W x 14” H x 4” D
- 5.5 lbs
We use natural Markings Equal Inclusion of Exceptional Imperfection Ornamentation
"... Saddleback Leather no longer discriminates against any cow on the basis of age, appearance, lactose intolerance... if the beast has a natural marking or brand, or whether or not they worship the Divine Bovine."
Truth is, sometimes beauty is only skin deep... like with cows. Their poetry is notoriously terrible, but man, their hides are nature's art. We don't believe that flawlessness equals beauty. Beauty is when we're able to see something as it really is.
This is true with humans too. There are lots of quality people who are really beautiful not in spite of, but because of the masks life has given them.
I’ve always held that if one truly believes something, then their actions ought to back it up.
So to back it up, my friend Jake and I took the 4 hour bus ride to welcome in the new millennium at El Zocalo (the main square) in Mexico City with millions of others. And boy howdy did that action backing up my belief ever pay off.
There were at least 200 mariachis playing, famous singers singing, the President cheering and enough fireworks to erupt a medium sized volcano. While my friends were chewing their fingernails at home in fear, we were laughing and crying and high fiving with 25,000,000 Mexicans. We were packed in so tight I felt like we were riding the last free rush hour ferry across an urban river in India. And there with pickpockets aplenty. I don’t think I’ve ever been in a more crowded place. It was A-W-W-W-W-W-E-S-O-M-E. By the way, that was the virgin journey of my original bag.
Well, it was that experience that inspired this bag; perfect for squeezing through crowds with the bare essentials, especially when you wear it as a backpack. If you want to forget about what you’re carrying and focus on what you’re experiencing, this is the bag for you.
Extra funny free Y2K story: My friend, Patrick, was in his paranoid friend’s home, who had stocked up all of his canned goods and water filters so he could drink out of toilets after the disaster, for Y2K. The exact second it turned midnight, Patrick was out at the electrical panel and switched off all the power to his house. Everybody completely freaked out thinking that all the hype was true…until someone said, “Hey, why are all of the neighbors lights still on?”
I got a chestnut Messenger Bag, I love it! I have to keep an eye on it at work, covetous eyes. The leather is beautiful and smells great!
What can I say, just got it 2 weeks ago and i'm already in love with it. The quality is without equal, the smell is out of this world. The side pocket cannot fit your usual Nalgene bottle, but can fit The small size Kor vida water bottle or the Klean Kanteen 27oz one, and give that nice little touch to the bag. I've always been a fan off leather has a material but this is just on a level above.
I purchased the tobacco messenger bag 3 months ago and its one of the best purchases I have ever made. I use this bag everyday for work and its perfect for the bus commute as its low profile lets me slip in between people. When I take my motorcycle to work the bag fits nicely as a backpack however with some weight in the bag it is tricky to put the bag on as the weight makes the leather strap slide around. This is no big deal as I loop a shoe string through one of the holes punched in the strap and tie it to the backpack ring, bam!
I'm obsessed with minimalist travel and on a weeks trip to Nova Scotia was able to fit all my stuff. (4 shirts, 4 shorts, 4 boxer shorts, 3 socks, sandles tied to the bottom D rings)
Next trip is to Dominican Republic and I'm gonna fit snorkeling gear in too!
The only suggestion I have is when the bag is worn as a messenger I find how the straps pull where they are attached to the sides of the bag allows rain to enter as the leather can be pulled slightly beyond the flap closure.
Thank you Dave and Saddleback Family, I will NEVER buy another leather product from anyone else!
I have owned my Dark Coffee Brown Messenger Bag for almost two years now, and I use it every day. The bag is mighty to say the least, and I still get questions and compliments on it all the time even with 700+ days of wear and tear.
I consider this purchase to be one of my most practical and useful in years. I would like to mention some small issues with the bag, however. For one, the pigskin lining and rivets from the main closure buckle can abrade items placed in the front portion. There is a also an accessory fob with a carabiner like hook on the end that is also a scratching concern.
Because of the bag's considerable dry weight, I would also warn those prone to back pain about overloading the bag. Most people would carry this bag across the torso over one shoulder, and a fully loaded bag can put considerable weight on the lower back.
I have added the large belt pouch to the shoulder strap, making my bag look even cooler and more functional. My only real problem is now I want a saddleback back pack!
I heartily recommend this product to anyone wanting to step up their man cred, those who won't accept anything but the best, and those who love the unique and timeless.
I didn't write a review for this product when I first received it because I felt that wouldn't be a fair estimate of one of the major selling points: that the bag will last a lifetime.
Four years later and the tobacco brown messenger bag has aged well, held up magnificently to some tough daily use and acquired a great patina in the process.
I've treated the bag with Mink Oil since first acquiring it, which darkened it up a bit, and the treatment has helped the bag survive a fair bit inclement weather. It has been thrown around, dropped in puddles, dropped in snow, manhandled in airports(usually accompanied by compliments), spilled on by various fluids, caught in torrential downpours, et cetera, etc. and the bag appears to be in better condition today than the day I received it in the mail. None of the thread in the seams have frayed or broken, the rivets are all in excellent condition with no damage/tearing to the surrounding leather. I've overloaded the bag on several occasions, when forced to by circumstance, and it has been no worse for it.
A common complaint, and my only one, is the weight of it. I'm an average build, 5'10" and relatively fit. Wearing the bag for a day over a single shoulder, with only a modest load(5-6 lbs.) can get a bit sore. The wide shoulder pads do help distribute the weight and this would be an issue for any messenger bag being slung over a shoulder all day but it is emphasized by the natural, empty weight of the bag. This shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone reading this review as the weight of the bag also reinforces the quality of it. This isn't three sheets of kleenex you are packing around that will fail you the first time it is put to the test. This is a durable, strong and classic bag. It will take more of a beating than you during your travels and look better for it. The same won't always be the case for you!
I have a couple of SBL bags of varying sizes now but this one remains my favourite, by a large margin, and I use it almost daily. If I had to pick just one bag to use no matter where my adventures take me, be it the urban jungle, frozen north or more tropical climates, then this is it.
If you are on the fence about it, not quite able to make the leap due to the cost, let me allay your concerns. Buy the messenger bag; you won't regret it. It truly is the perfect bag.
I bought this bag six months ago or so as a self-present. I've been getting compliments on it -- in airports, at work, in coffee shops -- since.
What I like most is that it is really built to last. The quality of the craftsmanship and the thought that went into making a nearly indestructible product makes me feel smart every time I fling it over my shoulder. It fits my Dell (I know minus points, its from work) like a champ; I toss a notebook, chargers, pens, etc., on the other side of the divider; and put magazines (print!) in the outside pouch. And, this is silly but really interesting -- the key holder strap is actually easy to use and is secure. I can't tell you how many backpacks I've owned where the key holder thing was a total pain to use.
Keep up the good work. Can't wait until I figure out what I'm buying next.
Scroll down a few reviews and you'll read that of my brother, Mark. I was shocked at how amazing his messenger bag looked when I saw him open it. I already had a front pocket backpack, but when I saw his, I did some soul-searching. I realized that the backpack was way bigger than I needed, although it was incredible. I sold it (It took one hour on eBay). I bought this bag, and now I feel like my life is that much more complete.
It's not heavy, if you're used to a backpack. Compared to your typical fabric messenger bag, yes, it's a lot more substantial. The strap is comfortable without the pads, the design is perfect, and I'm excited to use it until I give it to my son, as soon as he's old enough to use it, so I can buy a new one.
Thanks for the tax and financial advice, Mark.
I have a serious problem with Saddleback bags. They're all so good, it's hard to know which of the three I own (Dark Coffee Messenger, Tobacco Large Satchel, Carbon Small Satchel) to use on any given day. I love the idea that this bag in understated. Something this well made draws attention to itself. Don't hesitate. I came to SBL from years of carrying messenger type bags. They may last, but I'm not a bike messenger and nylon is nylon. Do yourself a favor and buy ONE saddleback bag, so you don't have my problem. (If you're asking for my favorite, it's this one, with the large satchel and close second).
I own a small wallet, MacBook sleeve, and a notepad holder. All of them are great, but I didn't have a bag.
Then my brother, who has been keeping track of all my tax and financial advice, decided to pay me in my favorite currency, SBL. He got me the messenger bag in tobacco, which looks absolutely amazing. I think he was more excited than me when I opened it up, and I had to FaceTime the experience. Also, I may or may not have slept with it that first night.
I showed my neighbor across the street, and wasn't even worried when his drool dropped on the bag. He's already got Father's Day, birthday, and Christmas wish lists filled out.
I'm hesitant to take it to church, because I don't want it to distract people from the messages they're hearing. Or is it better to fill the room with that heavenly, inspiring, new-leather smell?
Thanks Dave and team for a great product, and thanks to my brother Ryan for the best gift ever!!
Its a quality product made by a quality American. It is not a quality product made by a Japanese or German. This means that if you like the idea of a Chevy with the LT package and all the fixins- you might like this bag. If you like the idea of BMW or Lexus- other very good choices- you might prefer an Osprey or ONA. I have all three (bags not cars), and use them on a mission specific basis. The leather bag is uber heavy and as such provides some shock absobtion simply by way of padded mass. It is a 2500 diesel pickup. 99% of the time it is 99% more than you need- in every way. The other 1 percent of the time will make you proud to be an American. (btw osprey and ona are both american companies. just go w/ the metaphor).
I am interested to see the reaction I get when I take such a large piece of leather to a yoga class. HA
This messenger bag (tobacco) is just phenomenal. Taking her out of the box impressed me with her substance. This is no flimsy bag. Expect it to weigh close to 5 pounds on her own.
I got the water proofing number three and she darkened up but still kept a beautiful color. I've had several compliments from strangers in the week I've carried her around. I will use this to carry and protect my macbook and all future generations of laptops that she will out live.
Thanks for an awesome product.
I wept the first time I saw her, she was one of the most beautiful things I have ever had the pleasure of seeing. Her gorgeous lines, smooth brown skin, and delightful aroma completely over-loaded my senses. She and I have been together only one monthsâ time, and she has already changed my life. She is my constant companion, partner in both business and pleasure. Men gawk at her and ask me how I happened upon such a fine specimen. Women stare in envy knowing full well that what I have, is far superior to what they possess. I know we will spend the rest of our lives together, my messenger bag.
I have been looking for a good quality bag that would last me a lifetime and look better the more it was used and abused. I wanted it to be completely leather (including the straps), no zippers, or other breakable parts??? Sound familiar????
A few months ago saddleback started showing up in my searches,not sure why it took me so long to find Dave's site, but I did and now I am an addict. Dave is doing exactly what I have been looking for.... Awesome!!!!!
Currently only have the messenger bag in dark coffee brown right now. This thing fits way more than expected. I can fit my laptop, my external USB powered monitor, notepad, power supply, mouse and various cables. It is a little snug but it all fits.
Now just waiting on other items I have been eyeing to come back in stock... is there a support group for saddleback addicts, my wife thinks I have a problem :-).
I bought the tobacco messenger bag for my "one personal item" carry on to keep the stuff I needed to access while flying. This thing fits under almost all airline seats and I still have room to move my feet around. I intended to have it in addition to my regular carry on bag, but I find that I can put enough stuff in the messenger bag to last a week. The last few trips I have taken only the messenger bag and it has worked out just fine. I roll my spare clothes, take quick dry skivvies and shirts, buy a few things at my destination if I need to, and travel really light. I also use it for my day to day murse, so I don't misplace all of the things I am starting to depend on like my iPad, glasses, hearing aids, and meds (getting old).
Although quite a bit heavier than the Timbuk2 bag that it replaced this messenger bag provides a lot more protection for the contents. I don't really use the divider for the bag, but it would be good if I carried papers I suppose. I do agree with other people that say that the outside cellphone pocket could use a flap or something to secure the phone. Anything in those outside pockets is pretty available to sticky fingers or other loss. Like others I have some small canvas bags that I put small items in to keep things organized.
The only problem that I had was one of the loops on the shoulder strap fell off right after I got the bag. A quick call to Saddleback Leather got me a return label for the strap and a new loop riveted on to the bag.
Overall this bag is a really good fit for me.
My bag arrived on a day I was flying out to work in Canada's north. At the airport a guy in line said, "that bag looks military grade, it looks like it'd last 100 years!". I told him that was the warranty.
It IS heavy, but it carries well. The wide strap makes it comfortable. It IS minimalist - mot much in the way of pockets etc but I purchased some canvas bags of different colours to organize iPhone cables, iPad cables etc. It's easy to find things that way and I don't collect junk.
I thought the top handle was excessive until I had to pull the ag out from under a small airplane seat and bend over to almost cawl out of an 8 passenger bag. The handle made that much easier.
The leather is phenomenol, the rivets nd stitching are excellent.
There is one weak link. On the side the sin strap is attached with one rivet and a small piece of stitched leather. The stitching WILL fail there and then the rivet will eventually pull through. There could have been interior reinforcing, wider leather, and/or extra rivets for that main attachment. It will probably take to 10 years before that happens but it probably will. For that reason it gets 4 stars. I'm going to enjoy those years and enjoy watching my bag break in beautifully.
I'm a long-time addict of Saddleback Leather: medium briefcase, wallet, Kindle case, business card holder, and now the messenger bag. My family calls it my "murse" or "man-purse" or "man-bag" but they can call it whatever they want because they're clearly just jealous. The new carbon black is deliciously distressed, and triple-testosterone manly. Great product. As usual.
I was scouting on Dave's Deals a few months ago for a thin briefcase but it took me a while to decide on whether I should buy the one that was in there. I was disappointed when after a few hours, the bag that I was eyeing was gone. I went to check again after a few hours and I found a Chestnut Messenger Bag. This time, I did not hesitate and bought it right away. I got the bag in 4 days and I was surprised at how good looking it is. It looked bigger than in the video, but I guess it was because Dave, who was 6 feet tall, who modeled it. The leather is so supple and I can see the excelent craftsmanship despite the fact that I got it from Dave's Deals. It is a good conversation piece. In my most recent trip, people would actually stop me at the airport just to complement it. The fact that it converts to a backpack is great because it does not have to dangle on my side as I run to catch my flight.
I know Saddleback fairly well and had a couple smaller items from them before buying this bag. But I was still pleasantly surprised at just how overbuilt and durable it is. It is noticeably heavier when you first pick it up, but once you have all your stuff in it and are carrying it around, you won't notice much difference to any other bag. The leather can be prone to scratches, but that just add character in my opinion. Overall the best (and probably from now on the only) bag I own.
I read about Saddleback in one of those Airline magazines while traveling god knows where and was intrigued. I had been looking for a thin, vertical messenger bag since the untimely demise of what was my favorite bag ever (vertical messenger bag from Kenneth Cole which was perfect for me until it self destructed, literally, after only about 6 months use). After taking a look at the Messenger Bag from Saddleback I asked Santa for it for Christmas. The bag is awesome, the construction is great (sure it is a little heavy but it is a man's bag) and it is exactly what I have been looking for. I'm in my early fifties with a good 10-15 years or so before any thought of retirement but I already know I'll never need another bag or briefcase. Oddly enough my daughter is majoring in Accessories Design including hand bags etc. and is interning at Kenneth Cole right now and is extremely impressed with the bag, its design, the quality of the components and how its put together. I'm a huge fan and would highly recommend this product to anyone although I do like standing out from the crowd which this bag helps me do.
I use this bag every day for travel, adventure, and hiking. It holds up like a champ. I feel like Indiana Jones when exploring with it. It is simply bulletproof, and I cannot recommend it enough!
Lacks Theft Protection for the phone pockets, otherwise I would like it much better.
This bag literally changed my life. I have never had it let me down ?????? not once ?????? the entire time I've owned it. We're talking fitting 25 lbs of groceries (including a very unwieldy baguette) without crushing anything or letting anything slip. And that's with 20 more lbs of groceries attached to the incredibly versatile metal ring at the top.
I never quite took to the backpack functionality ?????? the straps can be a bit annoying to handle and the video demonstration is not quite as focused as it could be, so I'm not even quite sure I'm doing it right. But for (slim-framed, short-torsoed) me, notching the strap at the shortest setting is more than adequate to keep the even barely filled (and thus more slip-prone) bag on my back where it belongs while biking.
After hefty amounts of saddle-soaping (and the occasional application of Meltonian shoe polish, which the bag just sucks up), it now has a gorgeous patina and is yielding without being slack. I'm likely to need to have the metal hardware replaced (heavy use has ground out more than half of the metal grommet that latches the strap to the rings), but the leather is still in pristine condition.
And, lest you disbelieve the hype around Saddleback ?????? in the one year and three months I've owned this bag, no fewer than three dozen total strangers have approached me to compliment me on the bag and asked where they could get one. Saddleback of course received my warm recommendation.
Don't spend $400+ on a bag at Barney's or one of those other shitshow retail leather goods places. Buying this bag, in addition to ensuring you'll never _need_ another bag (though they are habit-forming), rewards craft, transparency, and individual entrepreneurship. Buy this bag. Do it. Seriously. Right now.
This bag is amazing. I've had mine for a little over a year and it's still just as fantastic. It's been all over the world and travels extremely well as a carry-on/personal item. As everyone else says, I receive complements on it regularly. I am also a college professor and it meets all my daily needs. I would recommend it to anyone.
This is a hardy bag-----very heavy and rugged. It really needs to be tossed into a rock tumbler for a couple of days to break it in. Put a Macbook Air and an iPad in it, fits well, but your shoulder is going to crack. Unless your 6'4" and 250 lbs, under 40 and workout, you might consider something else. Otherwise, it's a tough, well made dude and will endure that 10oo years and the next meteorite shower.