The name of the bag is Charleroi (after the airport in Brussels), and is designed to be large enough for short trips, while complying with hand-luggage size restrictions. Inspired by a 1920s doctors' bag the designers found in Spitalfields market in London, the bag un-zips so the interior can be accessed with ease.
The bag is handmade in Italy from supple yet durable calfskin. A high-quality, soft-edge YKK Excella zip has been used, which will not scratch your skin as you reach into the bag. The zip is half silver, half gold, a subtle signature of the brand. All hardware is solid metal, with a durable anti-tarnish finish.
The bag has a padded shoulder strap for comfortable carrying and easily accessible internal slip pockets, ideal for storing a phone, wallet and passport. The bag is fully lined, and a solid padlock is included. The piping makes a hidden "W" shape, another piece of subtle branding.
Attached with press-stud fasteners is a removable canvas tote inside the bag, ideal for using as a day bag, accommodating purchases made while away, taking to the beach, or storing laundry. "You always return with more than you left with, so we came up with the extra bag," Mr Byron Peart explains.
founders, WANT Les Essentiels de la Vie
Founded five years ago by twin brothers Messrs Dexter and Byron Peart, accessories brand WANT Les Essentiels de la Vie has its values reflected in its name. The English-French hybrid expresses the label's grounding in travel (all items are created with the frequent traveller in mind and are named after airports), while the word 'essential' is a key concept for the brand: "We're trying to build something that actually needs to exist," the brothers explain. Years spent as busy executives running the fashion agency which they founded (that is responsible for the North American distribution of brands including Acne and Nudie), and endless business trips abroad gave the twins a clear understanding of the practical requirements of bags and accessories for professionals on the go.
Although the twins had no production experience, they consulted friends in the industry to track down the best materials and the leading Italian manufacturers, ensuring that their products are as well-built and long-lasting as they are stylish and functional. Characterised by an understated, timeless elegance, WANT Les Essentiels de la Vie items bring to mind the bygone era of luxury travel. "Good design," Mr Dexter Peart explains, "is universal. It could be someone in London or it could be someone in Delhi, the person could be 50 or 25, trendy or traditional, but good design usually always rises above those sorts of categories, and that is what we strive for."
ALSO BY WANT LES ESSENTIELS DE LA VIE
THE NARITA iPAD CASE
Exclusive to MR PORTER in this elegant colour combination, this Zipped iPad Case includes a screen cloth and ample storage for business cards and small documents
THE HEATHROW MESSENGER BAG
Constructed from organic Turkish cotton canvas, milled in France and dyed using natural pigments, this stylish messenger bag has plenty of space for daily essentials
THE NEWBURY IPHONE CASE
An ideal gift, this leather iPhone case has two card slots inside and is stamped with the brand's running man emblem, a reminder of the label's travel ethos
THE HANEDA LAPTOP CASE
The padded interior of this laptop case means you can arrive at that big presentation not only looking stylish, but also safe in the knowledge that your laptop will have survived the journey