You have made the decision that you need something to carry your work materials and settle on a leather briefcase. The decision was easy as they are stylish, elegant, and convenient. As you look around, you notice different styles of briefcases and the price range is anywhere from $100 to a few thousand dollars.
There are a few things to consider when choosing a leather briefcase and these tips will assist you in purchasing one that you are satisfied with and adequately meets your needs.
1. Authentic leather
Sure…it looks like real leather but is it? Artificial leather, also known as leatherette, pleather or faux leather, fools many as it comes across as authentic when in reality it is plastic with a polyurethane coating. There is no substitute for real leather which is strong, durable, and sophisticated. To determine whether the briefcase you are considering is real leather, feel it.
If it is flexible and soft, it is more than likely authentic. If it feels excessively smoother and plastic-like, it is fake. Briefcases often have tags usually located in an inside corner listing what type of material it is made of. Search for this tag and see what it says before purchasing. Real leather is usually more expensive so if you find a briefcase that is cheaper, it is probably made of artificial leather.
You want to make sure the leather briefcase you purchase matches your lifestyle Hard-sided briefcases are rigid, its frame is made of cardboard or hard plastic and can be opened when on its side. These types of briefcases are usually hinged and do not come with shoulder straps. Soft briefcases have no framing, open from the top, and is accessed when it is vertical.
Consider your lifestyle before purchasing a leather briefcase. Do you usually carry the same items in your briefcase and travel a lot? A hard-sided briefcase does not have to expand or contract to accommodate its contents and can be safely stored in an overhead compartment. Do your work priorities change frequently or do you have a long commute? A soft-sided briefcase is flexible when storing additional items and come with a shoulder strap to carry it during commutes on a bicycle or public transit.
Looking at the compartments that a briefcase offers will ensure that you are able to fit all of your items in it. Do you need to carry a laptop? Make sure the briefcase you are considering has a compartment for it. Confirm that the briefcase has compartments for work items such as stationary and business cards and personal items such as your wallet, identification, and keys if you do not want to carry them on your person.
If you travel a lot, some briefcases have a separate section for clothing and a compartment specifically for easy access to boarding passes, a wallet, and identification. Adequate compartments will give you the best chances of being organized on a consistent basis.
You obviously want to guarantee that the leather briefcase you purchase is big enough to contain everything you need, whether it be on daily trips to and from the office or extended business voyages. To determine if it will be big enough, take inventory of what you normally carry and then factor in things you may need occasionally. Make sure the briefcase can accommodate everything.
Before buying the briefcase you are considering, carry it around the store first to confirm that its dimensions are comfortable for you and that it will not be awkward for you. Remember, you will usually have things in the briefcase so if it is too heavy when it is empty, it will not work for you.