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Robb Recommends: A Luxe Leather Weekender That Will Travel With You for Decades

Maxwell Scott's surprisingly spacious Flero M bag is the kind of thing you won't want or need to replace.

Maxwell Scott Flerom Weekender Maxwell Scott

Welcome to Robb Recommends, a regular series in which our editors and contributors endorse things they’ve tried and loved—and think will change your life for the better. If we wouldn’t recommend it to friends or family, you won’t see it here. If you purchase a product or service through a link in this story, we may receive a small commission.

Sometimes the container is more exciting than the contents. That’s often the case with luxury bags, but this brings us to what I call the nice luggage problem: If a bag is too appealing, it stops being practical. Either you’re tempted to use it too often, over-filling or under-packing to justify bringing it along, or else you care for it more than the contents, babying it and using it too little.

This conundrum was on my mind this winter when I got a duffle from English brand Maxwell-Scott. Founded in 2002 by William Forshaw, the company offers luxurious Italian-made leather bags and cases with the characteristic heft and longevity familiar to fans of bench-made English shoes. The focus, Forshaw says, is classic but practical designs in quality materials.

Maxwell Scott Flerom Weekender

Maxwell Scott

I opted for a weekender from the Flero range. It’s a traditional duffle shape with two handles and double buckles, designed to fit precisely into airline cabin luggage limits. At first glance, it is an unquestionably handsome bag. The leather is substantial and soft, the hardware chunky and nicely burnished. Two things become clear only with use. First, it’s surprisingly spacious: because the upper doesn’t collapse, you can keep piling things in. Second, it’s not light: the weekender size is over four-and-a-half pounds with nothing in it. That’s not going to be a problem if you are carrying shirts and toiletries, but if you throw in a book and a bottle of wine, you’ll want to clip in the optional shoulder strap. The same polish and heft is evident, albeit at a reduced scale, in the brand’s washbags and accessories.

Leather quality is one of those things that online shopping makes nearly impossible to assess. Every brand claims superiority and none means much without sight, touch and scent. All I can say is that Maxwell-Scott’s vachetta leather is as good as any I’ve tried: lustrous, weighty and supple. It’s vegetable-tanned following Tuscan tradition to age and patinate over the years. A few more ecological credentials are worth mentioning in what has long been a notoriously dirty industry: as well as tanning without using heavy metals, the brand uses an old family-owned atelier that is now fully powered by solar panels.

Maxwell Scott Flerom Weekender

Maxwell Scott

The holdall is a pleasure to use from the first day, but designed explicitly for the long haul—and backed up by a quarter-century guarantee. Thanks to the reassuringly firm construction and double buckle closure, you can pack a surprising amount in without worry. Where you might be tempted to shield a more delicate product from serious use, these bags welcome it. By the same token, such heft means that they won’t be for everyone, but if you’re looking for a solution to the nice luggage problem and you don’t need wheels, this may well be it.

Buy Now: £711 £604

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