Briefcases: Overview

Other Briefcase Pages: Examples   Exotic Leathers   Order Form

**Current lead time on briefcase orders is approximately 18 months**

Is this the last briefcase you will ever buy?  We think it might be. Just ask any of our customers, many of whom have been carrying a Mitchell case for ten to twenty years. Each and every briefcase is made one-at-a-time in our factory located just outside of Milwaukee, Wisconsin.  Our staff is intentionally very small consisting of just three people; David, Lisa and Bernadette (Mom).  Because we are such as small family business, we focus on quality rather than quantity.  We use only the finest full-grain leather hides and custom hardware.

Our hides are chosen for their distinctive natural character, feel, color, and grain, making every one of our creations unique and timeless. Our designs benefit from patented engineered elements that address the most critical stress areas of the bag, providing strength for long term durability through ingenuity rather than simple bulk or thickness. Our current briefcase designs are the result of more than four decades of continuous improvement and refinement- a process that is ongoing to this day.  Learn about the four models we offer below.

We build each briefcase one-at-a-time, carefully working our way through our order book.  The current briefcase lead time is approximately 18 months.

The Classic Briefcase

The Classic Briefcase is our masterpiece and has been our most popular bag since the beginning.  It's a full-size case that provides a rare combination of elegance and durability in one package.  This style, character, and look of this bag can be pulled in so many different directions through your choice of leathers and hardware finish.  Few other bags are versatile enough to fit in so comfortably with an bespoke suit or jeans and flip-flops.  The bound edges, intrinsic details, and overall fit and finish of the Classic, lend a refined air no matter how rustic your leather choice. 

Inside view of our latest version of the full-size Classic Briefcase.  The full-size Messenger has the same interior configuration.

All Classic Briefcase have the following features:

- Mitchell patented Modular Handle - U.S. Patent #5127500
- Mitchell patented Strap Holder with resistance pouch - Patent #5931270
- Our special outside back pocket that will not sag
- Adjustable shoulder strap with all-leather comfort shoulder pad
- Three compartments, two are 2.5" deep and one is slim for laptops
- External dimensions of 17" wide x 12" tall, depth 4" to 5" depending on contents
- Optimized for most modern laptop computers 15" or smaller
- Multiple smaller pockets for cell phones, wallets, etc...
- Large inside zipper pocket
- Snap-on leather key holder
- Four pen holders
- Leather-lined solid brass feet
- Solid brass or nickel hardware, plated steel for strength in critical parts
- Edges are finished with binding and are hand stained

Built to order from $1890

 The Messenger Briefcase

The Mitchell Messenger is one of the most attractive and streamlined designs we have ever made. It is based on our Classic Briefcase with the exact same internals, structure and size but with a front flap that extends all the way down the bag and provides quick access with neodymium magnets.  Because of this the handle is eliminated and the carry method is simply the shoulder strap.   

Messenger Briefcase Shown in Horween Walnut Dublin Leather

We have gone a step further than other messenger-type bags by incorporating a steel support plate in a critical location to prevent the bending and deforming that normally occurs with other bags of this type. The aesthetic is modern-classic all the way with a combination of ruggedness and elegance that is rare at any price.

Built to order from $1890

The Compact Classic

This is a smaller sized version of our venerable Classic Briefcase.  It utilizes the exact same design techniques and structure but in a size that is perfect for the minimalist who doesn't want carry a big bag.  It's optimized for smaller laptops like the MacBook Pro 13 or similar, iPads and letter-sized folders and documents.  External dimensions are 13.5" wide by 10" tall and 4" deep.
Compact Classic Shown in Burgundy CXL with Black Shell Cordovan Details

There are two main internal compartments (approximately 12.75" wide x 9" tall) with multiple inner pockets, a detachable key holder, pen holders, an internal zipper pocket and outside back pocket. We also include the same heavy duty double layer adjustable strap and leather shoulder pad as is used on our larger cases. Shown here in chestnut Dublin with brown CXL accent leather, the Compact Classic is available in the same variety of leathers as our larger cases.

Built to order from $1590

The Compact Messenger

Compact Messenger Shown in Rustic Ranch Leather

Just as the full-size Messenger is to the full-size Classic, so is this Compact Messenger to the Compact Classic.  It has the same exact dimensions and internals as the other Compact but features a quick-access flap with neodymium magnets and eliminates the handle.  

Built to order from $1590


Customizing Your Briefcase

Our briefcases are often built to order which allows you to customize the look of your case. Here are some of the choices:

1) Determine which model/style case you want.
Classic Briefcase
Messenger Case
Compact Classic Briefcase
Compact Messenger Case

2) Choose a main exterior leather. To help you decide, answer some of the following questions:

Do you tend to dress more casual or formal?

Is the case going to be used for daily work in a more formal environment?

Do you like darker or lighter leathers? If darker, do you lean toward black or brown?

Would you prefer that your case be all one color or a two tone?

There are lots of possibilities here. The most popular are: all black, all brown, two-tone with brown and black, and two-tones that have burgundy and black. To make an all black bag less ordinary we often do a two-texture combination of something like smooth black main leather with pebble grain leather for the binding and buckle details. In the brown family you have all kinds of great choices from light to dark. If you narrow it down to liking lighter or darker browns, your best bet is to check with me to see what interesting leather hides I have on hand. Two-tones with brown and black are great because they will match whatever shoes and belt you have on.

3) Ask us to recommend an interior lining leather
We use specially selected lighter weight lining leathers for the interior of our cases. It's always nice to have a color that compliments the exterior. We often use earth tones like beige, brown or black, but colors like navy, dark green or red are popular as well.

4) Choose your logo

We don't offer any of our briefcases without a logo, but you can opt for our minimalist wallet sized Mitchell crest or the Mitchell / Horween Collection circle logo for any case made from Horween main exterior leather.

5) Do you own an iPad or other Tablet?
We now build an iPad pocket into all of our cases that will also work for most other tablets. This holds your iPad snug and prevents it from bouncing around the larger compartments. Let us know if you have something of a different size.

6) Tell us how tall you are and whether you prefer to carry your bag cross-body or not
Our already adjustable shoulder strap can be better optimized for you if we have this information.

7) Choose Brass or Nickel hardware 

Brass has a more traditional formal look while Nickel feels a bit more modern and slightly more casual.  They both look great with almost any leather.

Please email or call with any questions you may have or to place an order.

Other Briefcase Pages:  Examples   Exotic Leathers   Order Form 
Mitchell Leather Factory