Packing for a few days away can be a challenging thing to do these days, and no, I don’t just mean because picking your weekend wardrobe is a sartorial Sophie’s choice. Not only do you need clothes, but you also need a bag to suit. It needs to be big enough to carry it all but small enough to sling in the back of the Aston; something that not only acts as a practical sidekick but is also a stylish wingman. To make that search that little bit easier, here are our picks for the perfect practical weekend companion.
Dunhill Hampstead Leather Holdall, £1,375
If you want a bag to take to the office on a Friday without looking like you’re going to the gym – better yet, one that complements your bespoke suit – then look no further than the Hampstead from Dunhill. It has the right amount of class with a suave appearance and contemporary silhouette. Despite the British appearance, it’s made in Italy using durable smooth leather, ensuring that scratches won’t show up and it can take a slight bashing. Although I’m sure you wouldn’t want it to.
Available at mrporter.com
Brunello Cucinelli Leisure Bag, £3,370
Despite this bag having a shoulder strap, we strongly advise against using it. For aesthetic purposes only, of course. The handles are large enough to thread through your arm and hang off your shoulder if need be, but the best way to carry is to grip the handles and toss it over your back to conform with the stylish nature of Brunello Cucinelli. This super-soft suede and grained calfskin bag oozes Italian charm, the perfect sidekick for nonchalant wandering. Well, that and a Lonely Planet guide.
Available at brunellocucinelli.com
Oliver Spencer Doctor’s Bag in Suede, £489
You can trust a doctor to carry the necessary items to save a life, but it’s anyone’s guess what exactly they carry in a bag this size to do so. Of course, that was back in the day when penicillin was just being discovered and doctors were riding Pashley bikes around country villages, I assume. Oliver Spencer’s version has a focus on utility design, so replace the stethoscope and white lab coat with your very own modern-day lifesaving essentials: a laptop, sneakers and overshirt.
Available at oliverspencer.co.uk
Tod’s Leather Travel Bag, £1,850
This is a bag that has been crafted in incredibly soft leather and has a characteristic colouring that will only get better as it develops a patina with age. Think of it as the bag equivalent of a classic car. With a front zip pocket for easy access to things like keys or documents, the bag features an oversized tab on the zipper which is super helpful when opening and closing but keeps things classy. There’s also a nice touch with metal studs at the bottom of the bag so that when you do place it on the ground it protects the leather. It also makes a pretty nice sound when connecting metal to concrete. It’s the little things in life.
Available at tods.com
Connolly Black Leather Seabag, £1,700
Connolly has a rich heritage steeped in the rarefied realm of classic British motor racing, supplying leather for car interiors as well as driving accessories. Its craftsmanship and know-how continues with the production of elegant leather goods alongside its exquisite clothing collection. The Seabag is a slightly more sturdy offering with a structured compartment where you can layer your weekend valuables with ample space. The raised handle flaps act like a grip for whenever you want to throw your coat or jumper over the main compartment.
Available at connollyengland.com
Vocier C38 Cabin Luggage & Garment All-In-One Bag, £545
A slight alternative to your usual weekender here, but one for the travelling businessman or frequent traveller who likes structure to his packing regime. We are creatures of habit, so therefore if you have a system and like to stick to it, then this beauty aides you in those packing tasks. Vocier claims to have an anti-wrinkle system it calls Zero Crease™ for suiting and so forth, so that it can generally survive a flight. What more do you want? Just get off the plane, check in to your hotel and you’re good to go.
Available at vocier.com
Filson Leather Trimmed Twill Duffle Bag, £385
If a rugged, active weekend away is more your cup of tea and you demand a bag that you can throw in the Defender or G-Wagon without a care in the world then this is the one for you. Filson’s heritage is all about commitment to quality and durability for the outdoor, adventurous type. With rustproof brass zips and a storm-flap for added weather protection, this is a bag to be used and abused and will last the test of time. Like the aforementioned Defender, it’ll likely age really well too.
Available at mrporter.com