Luxury bags without the baggage
With eco-friendly products like the Troubadour Weekender, you’ve got Earth Day in the bag.
Originally posted April 20, 2022
With Earth Day just around the corner, many of us have the future of the planet on our minds. There are plenty of ways to make an impact, whether it’s taking steps to minimize your carbon footprint, increasing the amount you reuse or recycle, or simply supporting eco-friendly brands like Troubadour.
The London-based lifestyle brand specializes in functional, minimalist bags that are responsibly made with a commitment to sustainability — and zero compromise on style or quality. Nearly 90% of Troubadour’s products are crafted from recycled materials and fabrics, including one bag that’s made from about 44 recycled plastic water bottles. They also offset 100% of the carbon emissions from their shipping, power their office and store with 100% renewable energy, and use packaging that’s made from 85% recycled materials, 100% of which are recyclable and compostable.
The quest for the perfect weekend bag
Founders Samuel Bail and Abel Samet started Troubadour after working together in finance and bonding over their mutual love for endurance sports. The friends soon discovered that they shared what some might call an obsessive attention to detail and an appreciation for clean aesthetic lines. At the time, they were both regularly heading out of town on weekend trips.
“For years, we searched for the perfect overnight bag,” Bail and Samet say. “Something we could take anywhere, from the boardroom to the mountains. Refined enough for business, rugged enough for the great outdoors, and casually smart enough for weekends with friends.”
The pair eventually decided that the weekender they really wanted didn’t exist, so they’d just have to make it themselves.
“We set off on an 18-month odyssey around Europe, tracking down the best independent artisans. Leather tanners, fabric weavers, zip makers,” the founders say. “And together, we created the bag of our dreams.”
The line has since evolved into a full range of bags and accessories designed to meet the founders’ high standards for performance and style while also minimising any harm to the planet. In addition to recycled fabrics, that means using Bluesign-approved materials that are tracked all the way through the manufacturing process for enhanced transparency.
“And for our leather products, we only use hides that are a natural byproduct of farming and are transformed into leather by vegetable tanning,” Bail says. “This is a chemical-free process that uses a mix of tree bark, water, and other natural ingredients to create beautifully soft and durable leather.”
As a certified B Corp business, Troubadour meets the highest verified standards of social and environmental performance, transparency, and accountability. Each bag also comes with a five-year guarantee, and after that, the brand offers a repair service for the lifetime of your product at a nominal fee. In the rare cases that a bag can no longer be repaired or donated, they’ll buy it back and recycle it.
Designed for good
Troubador’s attention to detail goes beyond their impact on the earth. Sleek, minimalist form and seriously high function are at the heart of every Troubadour bag. The work-to-weekend ethos is in full effect in products like the Explorer Apex Backpack, which keeps your gear dry with lightweight, waterproof Ecoguard recycled fabric whether you’re commuting to work or hiking up a mountain. The foam-padded Techguard interior pockets protect your laptop and gadgets while electro-moulded breathable back panels keep your back cool and dry. And like most Troubadour products, it’s designed to reduce stress on your pressure points. The ergonomic memory-foam shoulder straps are curved to fit your body so you can handle heavy loads knowing your back is supported.
For the gym or quick overnight trips, the same great materials and tech can be found in the Embark Compact Duffle, which was designed to fit easily in a locker. With mesh pockets, a bottle holder, and a separate shoe compartment lined with waterproof, breathable, antimicrobial fabric, it’s the ultimate sporting companion — and the detachable Carrylight straps ensure it won’t slip off your shoulders, no matter how sporty you get.
For work, look no further than the Carrier Tote. With a zip-top opening for extra security and Italian-leather handles for extra elegance, it may be the only utility tote you’ll ever need. Like most Troubadour bags, it’s constructed with Seamlight techniques that involve fewer pieces of fabric and seams, so it’s lighter and less bulky, and the straps are attached with rivets for the strongest possible connection. Discrete external pockets with hidden magnetic closures make it easy to access your stuff, while the side snaps keep the bag slim when you have less to carry.
And, of course, the travel bag experts have put everything they’ve learned into the lightweight, waterproof Troubadour Weekender. From comfortable vegetable-tanned leather handles to a padded 16-inch laptop pocket, zippered compartments for valuables, and a trolley sleeve that slides over luggage handles, it’s the highest evolution of the “dream bag” that started it all.
“Our design philosophy is all about striking the right balance between performance and modern refinement. Clean lines and minimal stitching, contemporary silhouettes, and understated simplicity,” the founders say. “Luxe, but not loud. Timeless, but 21st century.”
And in making bags and accessories that are engineered to perform brilliantly, the friends behind Troubadour say they found their true calling.
“We want to create products that will last for decades, and we hope people enjoy using our bags as much as we enjoy making them.”