The Clipper Satchel – A True Classic
“Everything they say about it seems to be an understatement. Well worth the investment, and it will be my forever bag.”
The Clipper bag is a long-term Tusting favourite. An informal business satchel, camera bag, flight case, safari pack (the list goes on), Clippers will serve everywhere and anywhere. It is often said that “imitation is the highest form of flattery” and whilst many of our competitors have copied our handsome Clipper Satchel over the years, we genuinely believe that few have matched it.
The Clipper owes its design origins to classic game and fishing bags, with its bellow pockets, brass fittings and collar stud fastenings. Initially, we created the Clipper in strong cotton canvas with leather trims and a long shoulder strap, but after a chance encounter with one of our American customers, who suggested that it would come into its own as a business bag if made entirely from leather and with a leather top handle, it got its first upgrade. This simple facelift saw our Clipper bag gain new purpose, transitioning from an off-duty messenger to a versatile smart/casual briefcase that is as at home in the shires as it is in the city.
Much of the versatility of Clipper is thanks to its satchel design. The top handle lends a city feel but the adjustable shoulder strap helps add a sense of breeziness and spreads the load. Soft-sided, the Clipper is roomy and hardwearing. The main compartment is spacious, whilst the two bellowed pockets at the front of the bag are great for storing your cables, phone, sunglasses, water bottle, or even socks! Its most recent upgrade included shock-absorbing padding for the floor, sides and, of course, the internal computer slip pocket. At the back, a further full-width slip pocket gives quick access to your essentials when on the move.
The smaller size was conceived to fit today’s more compact tech lifestyle (13” laptops), whilst the regular size will swallow 15″ machines. For many, the Clipper serves as an easy briefcase, whilst for others, it makes for a great overnight or flight bag, easy to sling over your shoulder and even accommodates a twenty-four-hour wardrobe.
On the subject of easy access, it’s easy to miss one of the key features of the Clipper’s design – the two collar-stud closures on the front tabs. Whilst fully functional, the buckle detail on the straps is, to an extent, aesthetic since they are not intended as the normal ‘way in’ to the bag. The quick-access solution is to simply ignore the buckle and just pull the straps off the studs. Similarly, to close, just push them back on. Easy. The main purpose of the buckles is to allow for capacity adjustments but they needn’t ever be used otherwise.
Clippers are most frequently chosen in one of two leathers. Aztec Crazyhorse imbues a spirit of adventure and allows you to channel your inner India Jones. It has a rugged, casual feel, thanks to the generous oils applied during the tanning process, has an ‘old favourite, has seen some action’ appearance from the off. Our Sundance Floodlight presents itself as both smart and casual, looking a little more responsible due to its high polish and wax content for a more consistent finish and tone. It is equally rugged under the surface though, and secretly loves a hard life too. It can either be waxed and polished regularly to keep its smart appearance, or left to wear the knocks and scars of life, so taking on a more informal look.
For those looking for an entirely unique Clipper and wishing to work in a personal touch, we are able to build bags in accordance with your personal material choices, be they a blend of cloth/canvas/tweed and leather or multiple leathers. Adjustable inserts are also a boon for photographers and equipment carriers.
Simple personalisation comes in the form of our embossing service and allows you to choose between monogramming or an actual message, a great touch when gifting or marking a milestone. These are bags that are built to last and adding in a sentimental touch, makes their journey and ageing process all the more nostalgic.
Fancy some bespoke colours? Just Get In Touch to start the conversation.
Why did we give the Clipper its distinct name? We named it after the Clipper flying boats, the incredible aircraft that first flew passengers across the Atlantic. One such passenger was Jack Tusting (grandfather of our own Alistair Tusting) who was the third generation of the family at the helm here. Jack was an early adopter of these pioneering airliners, flying to the USA on extended business missions, both sourcing raw materials and selling his premium leathers.
Our bespoke service offers you the chance to create a fully personalised piece that will accompany you forever. Take a look at one of our most special bespoke Clipper creations here.
Clippers represent the perfect all-rounder bag which appeals to almost everyone. It is reliable, sturdy and reassuringly attractive. Outwardly virtually unchanged over the past three decades, its features have been continuously upgraded to keep pace with the requirements of our modern lives. All in, its a customer favourite – and ours too. In short, it has become a classic.