or Connect
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › Appropriate Briefcase for College
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Appropriate Briefcase for College

post #1 of 29
Thread Starter 

Hello everyone, 

 

I recently got out of the Marine Corps, and I will be heading to New York City to start my undergrad at Columbia this January. As someone who mostly wears tailored clothing of some sort, I was curious to see if anyone had suggestions for a briefcase/laptop bag that would be appropriate for a student. While I do normally wear a jacket an tie, I'd rather not walk around looking like I'm on my way to a board meeting.

 

I have had this one in mind for a bit by Custom Hide: http://www.customhide.com/ranger_brown.html   

 

 

700

 

 

Do you think that would be appropriate? I've considered this color or "whiskey brown".

 

Does anyone have any other suggestions, either specific bags or what styles to look for? I'd like to keep it at $300 or less, and it would ideally hold my laptop, notebook, and a textbook or two, while being comfortable enough to lug around NYC. 

 

Thank you for the help!

post #2 of 29
That looks nice. I gues the biggest issue is h
post #3 of 29
Sorry, damed iPad.

...how big your load is. I probably don't need to lecture you about carrying loads, but in my experience carrying more than a few pounds slung around one shoulder ain't good fer yer back in the long run. Most or your classmates will likely be carrying backpacks.

But in terms of quality casual briefcases, you could also look at Mulholland or Filson.
post #4 of 29
Something canvas (like a Filson) would probably be less conspicuous than something leather, but jacket or tie or briefcase--any one of those items by itself--is going to make you stick out as an undergrad. The bag you posted looks fine, though.

A word on Filson: if you want a bag that carries a laptop, notebook, and textbook (+1), I'd recommend the 257 model briefcase over the 256. I don't think my 256 can comfortably hold all those materials.
post #5 of 29
That looks like a pretty good choice. FIlson is good. On Permanent Style blog Simon Crompton had a post on leather bags that was good. They were all around $1000 range I think.

Jacket and tie seems excessive. You will be dressed more formally than professor (even if its MBA class in my experience)
post #6 of 29
I would stick with a good quality canvas bag with leather trim. Brady Bags in the UK or Filson in the US are both very good. When I was in college in the 70's I wore a corduroy or tweed jacket, never a tie, jeans or khakis and carried a French canvas pack with leather trim.
post #7 of 29
If you will be carrying a laptop in the bag have a foam rubber insert in the bottom to cushion in case you drop the bag. Thin sheets of foam rubber walls are good too. Some bags have U-shaped inserts to protect the laptop edges as well. You could probably use your existing bag and modify it as such. Welcome to Styleforum.
post #8 of 29
It's a beautiful bag and versatile enough to work casually (especially when slung over the shoulder). Buy it.
post #9 of 29
First off, thank you for your service.

Second, my concern would be whether or not this will hold enough. That's a gorgeous bag, but if it won't fit your daily load, you won't use it. Were it me, I would go with a Filson 257.
post #10 of 29
The bigger the bag, the more stuff you usually end up carrying. A smaller bag can be efficient.
post #11 of 29
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hayward View Post

Most or your classmates will likely be carrying backpacks.
But in terms of quality casual briefcases, you could also look at Mulholland or Filson.

 

I figured that about the backpacks, but I don't imagine it would look very coherent walking around in a jacket with a backpack on. I also thought about a Filson briefcase, but to be honest I haven't quite developed a taste for them aesthetically. Maybe I'll have to give it some more thought. 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by emc894 View Post

Jacket and tie seems excessive. You will be dressed more formally than professor (even if its MBA class in my experience)

 

You know, I've heard this argument before, but I honestly don't understand the reasoning behind it. In a suit or jacket and tie, I will always be more "formally" dressed than others these days, but isn't the point of this forum to encourage what is now an eccentricity? I understand that the Ivy League isn't what it used to be, but at this point I'm not an 18 year old coming out of high school, so if they want to wear sweatpants and t-shirts that's fine, but I wear a jacket and tie in my daily life, and I feel like it would be a little affected to change that just because I'm going to school now . 

 

Quote:
Originally Posted by aravenel View Post

First off, thank you for your service.
Second, my concern would be whether or not this will hold enough. That's a gorgeous bag, but if it won't fit your daily load, you won't use it. Were it me, I would go with a Filson 257.

 

I had that concern as well at first, but like someone mentioned earlier, I don't know that I would even want my whole load hanging on my arm all day. I guess I could just keep my things in a bag and carry my books. 

post #12 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by codeman92190 View Post

I had that concern as well at first, but like someone mentioned earlier, I don't know that I would even want my whole load hanging on my arm all day. I guess I could just keep my things in a bag and carry my books. 

I would make sure to get a bag that can comfortably carry all the things you need and worn (rather than carried) so that your hands can be free, especially for school. A (common) scenario to consider: walking into a restroom and having to find a portion of floor to put your stuff down so you can use the urinal. Compound that with maybe having to rush to class. I find myself in this situation a lot at school and it makes me curse not bringing my strap for my Filson or just wishing I had a backpack on.

Also, college loads can be unpredictable. You may find yourself needing to check out a few books unexpectedly for something and if you've only allotted enough space for a specific set of materials, things might get frustrating. I also don't know how close you are living to campus but if you are living somewhere else in NY, you might be carrying more stuff in your hands than comfortable.
post #13 of 29
Do they still have lockers in college these days?
post #14 of 29
Quote:
Originally Posted by Hayward View Post

Do they still have lockers in college these days?

There were a few for commuters where I went.
Quote:
Originally Posted by codeman92190 View Post

You know, I've heard this argument before, but I honestly don't understand the reasoning behind it. In a suit or jacket and tie, I will always be more "formally" dressed than others these days, but isn't the point of this forum to encourage what is now an eccentricity? I understand that the Ivy League isn't what it used to be, but at this point I'm not an 18 year old coming out of high school, so if they want to wear sweatpants and t-shirts that's fine, but I wear a jacket and tie in my daily life, and I feel like it would be a little affected to change that just because I'm going to school now . 


I had that concern as well at first, but like someone mentioned earlier, I don't know that I would even want my whole load hanging on my arm all day. I guess I could just keep my things in a bag and carry my books. 

I would recommend something with a shoulder strap, and not too heavy. A canvas messenger bag sounds perfect. I was using a laptop bag for a while, but I was generally carrying a few notebooks and maybe a book or two, and the weight of the bag easily doubled that of what was in it. I cut that out, and was a lot happier.

And yes, dressing formally will be incredibly excessive. The point of this site is to encourage dressing well- which includes dressing appropriately for your surroundings. Dressing formally is all well and good, but it's not appropriate for a modern campus, and you can dress well without dressing highly formally. Since you'll be a bit older than your classmates, you'll be able to get away with more, but most of your classmates will be dressed in hoodies and ratty jeans. Professors range widely, but I can't think of a single time I saw one in a suit and tie outside a special occasion. Sportcoats, yeah. One of my favorite professors wore a tweed jacket and tie every day, but he was the exception. And I would have been surprised to learn any member of the math or engineering faculties even owned a tailored jacket.

Wearing a tweed jacket and khakis with a collared shirt will make you much more formally dressed than most people, but you won't be as wildly removed from the rest of the student body stylistically. It'll just be a little more natural to the environment.
post #15 of 29
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by pocketsquareguy View Post

I would stick with a good quality canvas bag with leather trim. Brady Bags in the UK....

 

Thank you for this great suggestion. I had never heard of this maker, but I'm a very big fan of this bag of theirs: http://www.bradybags.co.uk/product-details.asp?pid=63

 

 

 

1000

 

It has the same potential space problem, but at this point I think I'm going to have to deal with that unless I want to walk around with a weekender all day. The only thing that I'm not a fan of is that it looks like there are no dividers or organizers on the inside, but no matter what I guess I'm going to have to compromise on something. 

New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Classic Menswear
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › Appropriate Briefcase for College