Back to uni time is upon us, so the hunt for that perfect bag to get through the year and beyond is sometimes a difficult choice to make. There is so much selection out there to choose from, and its important to find something that is good quality (to last), but looks good, too. The Brenthaven Collins Collection includes a range of bags that bring the style, while remaining affordable at the same time. Brenthaven has created a collection of bags which are designed to carry your daily essentials, and devices you bring to uni or work such as a MacBook or iPad.
I’ve recently had the chance to take a look at the new line, which is available exclusively to Apple, and wanted to share with you my thoughts on the series. There are five products in the collection – all of which vary in size, appearance, purpose, but all featuring the same quality materials and design elements. For this review I’m going to cover three items which all vary in style, size and price.
UPDATE (March, 2016): Unfortunately Apple has discontinued selling the Brenthaven series, It’s currently unclear where you can purchase them in Australia.
Brenthaven Collins Vertical Messenger Bag
The messenger bag is the most affordable item in the Collins collection, at only A$99.95 – however, this is a very good price point for what you get.
The Vertical Messenger bag is best suited to the iPad Pro and Macbook Air 11″ and 13″. Its compartment, which is accessed by a flap at the top, doesn’t feel as padded as the other bags in the collection (i.e. Courier Bag featured below), or as soft, but to me looked a little more stylish and interesting. This bag that would be suitable for everyday use and feels like a satchel – it hasn’t got that notebook bag look to it, so it’s a good option if you don’t want to carry a briefcase or backpack-style bag.
If you happen to have the new iPad Pro this bag fits it very well, even with the Apple Silicone iPad Pro case. There is room and a smaller compartments for accessories, too, such as the Apple Smart Keyboard case, and your daily essentials (wallet, keys, etc.)
When I tell them it’s my laptop bag, they are even more astonished. I only just got it because of its simple and minimalistic design. Little did I know, its a hit with style fanatic. – Apple Online Review
- Compact – great ‘day bag’ size
- Fits the new iPad Pro or 13-inch MacBook/Air/Pro
- Padded main compartment, and three smaller compartments
Brenthaven Collins Courier Bag
This is the slimmest of the series, and is very similar is size to the Messenger bag listed above. In terms of how much it fits, you will get a MacBook or iPad (including the new iPad Pro) in there along with its charger, and a book or two.
Its design reminds me a of a clamshell, with its rounded edges at the top corners, and opens up via a zipper all the way along the top. There is a also a front compartment with enough room for some pens, your iPhone and other little bits, as well as a small pocket at the back, which is closed by a magnet rather than a zipper.
This bag is very light and comfortable. I carry my macbook pro 13″ and my iPad mini, plus the accessories, like mac charger and mouse, plus the iPad charger. With all that said. is still very light, and the bag look very nice. material is soft, and the bottom is very cushion. It’s worth the price, i totally recommend this case. – Customer Review Apple Online
Where this bag really stands out is how soft it feels – it is extremely padded on both sides, making it feel just as nice as it looks.
- Fits the new iPad Pro or a MacBook perfectly
- Padded main compartment, and a series of other compartments in varying sizes
- One of the slimmest in the series
Brenthaven Collins Backpack
This is the one you need if you want to carry just about anything, and is also the one I felt was the most comfortable because the straps/back of the bag are padded. This is easily going to fit everything you need for uni or work from a 15-inch MacBook, plus an iPad or more, along with your books, pens, lunch and water bottle.
One interesting and good design element is the padded compartment for your MacBook, which is actually seperate from the main compartment. It also has some pockets for an iPad, cables and more. This means your MacBook slides into a compartment, comfortably sitting between the back and main compartment – this doesn’t just protect the MacBook, but because of the padding on the back of the bag you don’t feel your MacBook against your back like some other bags I’ve tried in the past (this can be very uncomfortable).
I very rarely write reviews but am so happy with this product I felt the need to write one. The price is justified by the quality of the bag. There is plenty of padding to protect my 13″ Macbook pro, including on the bottom section. – Apple Online Review
- Offers the largest amount of space, will fit every device up to 15-inch MacBook Pro, along with books, water bottle, etc.
- Plenty of compartments including a two-side padded compartment for your MacBook
- Cushioned back makes it extremely comfortable
- Adjustable shoulder straps.