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The Military Duffel by Whipping Post

A simple, rugged leather bag with no zippers inspired by the standard GI issue

by Hans Aschim in Travel on 10 January 2014

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Building on the success of their previous vintage-inspired leather messenger bag, leather goods producer Whipping Post's latest offering is a rough-and-tumble duffel. Originally from Georgia and now NYC-based, founder Ryan Barr (who started making leather goods after he needed a new guitar strap) was inspired by his father's bag from his service in the Vietnam War. The Military Duffel is handmade from vegetable-tanned full grain leather and contains no zippers; simply a fold-and-clip closure—just like those found on the classic bags used by GIs for decades. As a kid, Barr recalls using his father's bag for everything, from carrying tools to sporting goods. "I wanted to make a similar bag that was constructed of better materials and sized a little bit more appropriately for a few days away rather than a combat deployment," he explains. Whether you're at home in the woods or the city, the Military Duffel is just the right size for a carry-on bag and makes for a heavy duty, adventure-ready companion.

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A major aspect of Barr's design philosophy is rooted in simplicity and focuses on what's essential. You won't find any flashy logos or frivolous features in his goods: "I have a minimalist aesthetic that I try to stick to—less stitching, no lining when possible," he says. With fewer seams and no zippers, the Military Duffel has serious staying power. "This bag's lifespan will be measured in decades," Barr predicts.

The Military Duffel is available online for $319, along with Whipping Post's full line of leather bags and accessories.

Images courtesy of Whipping Post

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