My business role as a CEO involves almost daily travel, anything from a 2 hour train ride to long haul flights around the world. I needed a bag larger than my 'man bag', with room enough for my macbook, Ipad, power cables, books, magazines, pens, cigar travel humidor, food and drink (!) and, as my Director of Communications regularly tells me, my accessories also need ‘gravitas’! In my world that meant it had to be very stylish, made of high quality leather, with the option of handles (for short trips) and a strap (for lengthy hikes through airports). But it still needed to be relatively discreet. And finally, it would not have looked out of place as an accessory 100 years ago – traditional yet contemporary.
I found the perfect solution in the Hammond & Co range at Debenhams.
During my first reconnaissance I spotted the bag and it met all my specifications, except the price of £150 seemed high. A week later it went on sale for £75 and I quickly purchased it! Now, 6 months later, I cannot imagine life without it. It is indeed multi-functional and I have found myself using as a weekend bag, business bag, even occasionally as a daily ‘man bag’.
- Very good quality chocolate brown leather, which is holding up to the endless rough and tumble of daily travel.
- Padded handles, which are long in length making holding the bag when heavy easier and more comfortable. They can also be removed should I wish to have just the shoulder strap in use.
- Very robust solid metal zip.
- Metal studs on the base to protect the leather when I place it on the ground.
- Padded shoulder strap, so less likely to damage my jackets when I wear it over my shoulder.
- Inside are six pockets of different sizes.
- I can fit business cards, pens, keys (in a zipped pocket), an Ipad in a button closing side pocket, mobile phone, small items of office supplies (such as Post-It notes).
- It is 5 inches wide, 12 inches high, and 16 inches long.
- It seems to change shape depending on the volume inside, looking one day like a slim case and the next a robust weekend bag!
I realise now I was wrong to balk at the price tag of £150 – if I had paid the full price I still believe I would have obtained a bargain.
But what to call it? It is not a 'Briefcase' or 'Attache Case' in the traditional sense I would remember from my early working days in the 1980s. Then, quite by chance on the train platform the other morning, a fellow traveller beside me looked down at my bag and said "Great business bag!"
So now I have a new term in my vocabulary – ‘Business Bag’!