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Canvas and leather shoulder bags in original vintage design

Our canvas shoulder bags and leather briefcases are not an understatement, but a commitment to the style of the 19th century, when travellers were still adventurers. And you don't have to do without practical details like a laptop compartment or storage pockets. Fashion statements for true everyday heroes.

What is a canvas bag?

A canvas bag is a handbag made of cotton fabric. Particularly strong cotton fabric from approx. 8oz (ounces) is called canvas, or sailcloth. Canvas bags are usually lighter than, for example, leather shoulder bags. Canvas bags are relatively easy to clean and not very sensitive to scratches or abrasions. In terms of style, a canvas shoulder bag is more like a vintage retro style. Mostly inspired by the late 19th century or the early 20th century.

Is canvas a good material for a bag?

Genuine canvas is a tightly woven cotton fabric from a weight of approx. 8oz or 225g/m2. This fabric was previously used primarily in seafaring for sails (canvas) and in industry for workwear and leather goods. The material is equally popular in painting. Almost all famous paintings in the world have been painted on canvas. It is impossible to imagine the beginnings of cinema without canvas. After all, canvas served as an ideal projection surface.

Unfortunately, canvas was eventually replaced by plastic in many areas of application. In the leather goods industry in particular, you unfortunately find a lot of plastic materials today that are falsely called canvas. Genuine canvas is always made of 100% cotton.

For our DRAKENSBERG bags, we therefore rely exclusively on genuine cotton canvas. For tradition, for reasons of sustainability and also for formal aesthetic reasons. Our cotton fabrics have a weight of 16oz or approx. 450g/m2. In addition, our canvas is hand-dyed and then washed until the authentic DRAKENSBERG vintage look is achieved.

What is the best way for men to carry a leather shoulder bag?

A shoulder bag can be worn over the shoulder or across the shoulder. We recommend wearing our men's canvas and leather shoulder bags across the shoulder, as this distributes the weight of the bag better. It is then less strenuous when you have to cover longer distances with the bag over your shoulder. In general, you should switch carrying sides on longer journeys in order to evenly load your back and spine and thus relieve the strain.

In general, briefcases and shoulder bags should not be overstuffed. Before setting off on a journey or on the way to work, you should check which things are really needed that day. This protects your back and the material.

What is the difference between a men's shoulder bag and a men's hand bag?

Handbag is the main term for all types of medium and small bags that are carried with the hands or on the upper body. Many handbags have a practical shoulder strap so that the handbag can be carried over the shoulder or across body. These bags are called shoulder bags. Shoulder bags that are worn cross-body to the body are often also called "cross-body bag”.

On which side do you wear a leather shoulder bag?

That depends above all on your own habits and preferences. It is best to consider whether you are right- or left-handed. If you are right-handed, it is advantageous to carry the leather shoulder bag on your left side. And vice versa. This makes it easier to access items in the shoulder bag. For longer journeys, it is advisable to change shoulder sides regularly to relieve the strain on your back and neck.

Which canvas shoulder bag brand is best?

DRAKENSBERG shoulder bags made of canvas and leather are everything, but not ordinary. Sustainability is not just an advertising claim for us, but part of the authentic product design. We are concerned with authentic canvas and leather bag that could have been made in a similar form 100 years ago. In other words, with natural materials, without plastic.

At the moment, there is actually no bag manufacturer that would be a role model for us. Even the big brands continue to rely on the classic chrome tanning and manipulate the surfaces of the leather. Also widespread in the industry is plastic lamination, in which a higher material thickness of the leather is imitated with a foam lamination.

In any case, "vegan" leather often conceals commercially available plastic. It is very rare to find leather-like materials that are actually made 100% from plants. Unfortunately, the term "natural leather" is currently out of date. For us, a leather that is reinforced with foam is not "natural leather" but an inferior leather.
In the 21st century, a good backpack should also convey a good and honest feeling and should not make empty promises. At DRAKENSBERG, we do without synthetic materials as far as possible. Our leather or canvas is not laminated with plastic. Our outer fabrics do not contain any plastic fibers. The leather we use is sustainably vegetable-tanned, even if not entirely without chrome. An original with rough edges, but an honest character.

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