Mont Blanc’s Night Flight Messenger
At all Mont Blanc stores
At Mont Blanc, we picked this handsome messenger bag after bypassing the rather sturdy specimen specifically created for carting around laptops, because vanity is one sin we haven’t managed to shake off. Don’t blame the guys at Mont Blanc if the lappie starts acting loco after a while, but we promised ourselves we’d be careful with the equipment if it sported such a casing. This chocolate and sand coloured piece in leather and fabric is not too structured and has an easy-to-open fastening, which is convenient when you open your bag on the go. The insides look good too, with a monogrammed lining and convenient slots for pens and other knickknacks. You also get a two-year limited warranty. The sling strap is wide and quite comfortable with the padded shoulder patch, but we thought the brand name in big lettering all along the strap was a bit overdone for such a discreet brand. Pad your laptop on either side with books, folders, or the like, because it tends to move around since the bag is so soft.
Hugo Boss’ Laptop Bag
At Hugo Boss stores in Mumbai, New Delhi and Bangalore
This one’s a functional, serious-looking specimen in black calf leather with sturdy fastenings and what seems to be an industrial-strength zipper. The top flap opens all the way, just like a briefcase, and it’s sufficiently cushioned, plus there’s an additional padded sleeve for your laptop, so you won’t be able to brain the poor machine, however accident-prone you may be. What we didn’t dig was the coal-coloured lining—if you’re planning on exposing your insides to the world, make sure they look good. The empty product is heavy and weighs quite a few pounds after you add a laptop, but that’s the case with most well-padded cases. The shoulder strap could have been broader and it definitely needed a padded patch for the shoulder—the leather one is not sufficient for such a heavy bag. All in all, it’s a safe but chic option.
At Grand Hyatt Plaza, Mumbai; store opening soon in New Delhi Rs62,500
Bally’s calf leather piece uses their signature canvas stripes (in black and white, this time) as detailing on the handle and shoulder strap. So it turns out to be visually appealing and is so well crafted that you can’t tell which side is the front (it has a merry striped lining as well). And it’s pretty lightweight for a semi-structured pure leather bag. You won’t find too much protection, as this is not a designated laptop bag, but we were drawn to it anyway. The zip seemed quite strong and the bag will look even better as it ages. But what’s surprising is that it didn’t offer a shoulder pad. We understand they may have wanted to keep it sexy, but even vain bag hunters like us would prefer a blip on the chic-ness radar to a shoulder spasm.
Kipling’s Working Life Mandy
At Kipling stores in Mumbai, New Delhi and Bangalore
If you’re addicted to formal dressing, this option (and the next) is not for you. Kipling’s black nylon bag is for those super-cool ad guys who have long hair, a stubble and a pair of well-worn jeans. There’s not a bit of padding, but it does have a cute black sleeve for you to slip your lappie into before you put it in the bag. And we’d prefer to carry it by the padded handle than the slim shoulder strap which has no cushion.
JanSport’s Office Envoy
At major malls in most cities
However naughty you are with this bag, we’re pretty sure you’ll discover that your laptop’s sleeping soundly inside. It looks like the bag you get free from the computer guys when you buy your laptop, but it has a massive amount of padding that makes it feel you’ve suspended your laptop in a cloud of foam. There are lots of pouches and compartments in the front to dump your other belongings, because the main section will be taken up by the computer. And the special Air Lift Strap System—which provides a shoulder pad with hundreds of tiny shock absorbers—promises to reduce your load by 50%. Even then, we did feel like we were lugging a stone around, with only a laptop and a few books to weigh it down.