Rundown on Leather Cases for iPad

Discussion in 'iPad Accessories for iPAD 1, 2 and 3' started by tzimisce, Sep 30, 2010.

  1. tzimisce

    tzimisce
    Expand Collapse
    iPad Addict

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2010
    Messages:
    1,078
    Thanks Received:
    2
    About a few months ago, I was looking around for a nice leather iPad cover. I thought I'd share some of the findings from my research for anyone else thinking of getting the same.

    I was prepared to pay a bit more for a genuine leather product which would last for a long time (although not necessarily just paying for a "brand name"), rather than a faux-leather mass-made product. Reading the product description is important: unless they actually say "genuine leather", descriptions like "leather-look" or "feels like leather" can hide the fact that the product is, in fact, synthetic leather. For genuine leathers, sometimes they will also include details like what kind of leather was used or how it was prepared or dyed, which is useful to know (e.g. for product care.)

    The one I eventually ordered was from Oberon Design (Leather covers and cases for the iPad, Kindle, Nook and our famous journals) - they offer about 15 different designs for iPad cases, each in three colours. As all their items are made-to-order, it took three days to manufacture my cover, and another two weeks for it to arrive by transpacific parcel mail. Oberon's covers aren't cheap, but they are comparable with other leather covers in the same price range. Their designs are absolutely gorgeous and made from unsealed aniline leather, which mean it's more rugged for daily wear-and-tear - I can attest to that having used it for a few weeks already.

    I looked at well over a dozen other vendors and their products, and some of the more notable ones included:

    1. Piel Frama -- iPhone 4 cases iPad cases Leather cases for PDA Smartphone Laptop Manufacturer
    Spanish company. I liked their cover with the tabbed enclosure. I found a local vendor which was selling the cover design I wanted for 25% less than their website, and this was going to be my first choice until I found the Oberon.

    2. Sena Cases -- Sena Cases - Designer Leather Cases : BlackBerry case, iPhone case, Treo case, iPod Touch case, and other PDA cases
    Their flat-$10 worldwide UPS shipping plus engraving service made them quite price-attractive compared with Piel Frama. I had the chance to see and hold one (the Folio design) in the Sydney Apple shop - and realized that while it was really nice, ultimately it was just a bit too minimalist - i.e. another "expensive-looking-but-oh-so-boring-executive" folio.

    3. Vaja -- Vaja - Leather Products
    These are the absolute Rolls-Royce of leather cases, but the exceptionally high price, long waiting times (45-60 days!) and a whole slew of negative customer reviews online made it easy to say not take the risk. But it's great website just to look and drool, though.

    4. DodoCase "Moleskine" -- iPad Cases by DODOcase
    This is the most popular "Moleskine-lookalike" case which has been getting lots of good word-of-mouth. However, the three-week waiting period and high shipping cost made it quite pricey, nudging into the lower end of the genuine leather price ballpark. I did find the similar-looking M-Edge Trip Journal (M-Edge | Products | Trip Jacket for Apple iPad) as well as other Moleskine-cover clones like Caveman Cases (Caveman Case Co — Welcome). I did seriously consider going Moleskine for a while, before realizing I really wanted a leather folio after all.

    5. More -- More-Thing.com
    Not too many designs, but they do offer a range of alternatives like neoprene and faux leather in addition to full grain cowhide covers and slipcases. This was more of having another vendor for product and price comparison.

    6.TwelfthSouth --http://www.twelvesouth.com/products/bookbook_ipad
    Not quite "leather", but I thought I'd mention this in passing. Based on their original product for Macbooks, TwelfthSouth offers a cover called a BookBook(sic) for iPad. Interesting approach and not quite what I was looking for - but I can see how it'd appeal to hardcore bibliophiles.

    I also found any number of Asian-based vendors on eBay offering unbranded genuine leather covers for "too-good-to-be-true" prices. However, without really knowing if the descriptions are indeed accurate or quality of the workmanship, plus the hassle of having go through with a dispute if something went wrong, it was a risk I decided not to take.

    Final word of advice - if you're buying online, before checking out always always always Google "(brand name) coupon code". Sometimes you will find a coupon code that gives you a discount on your order - I found discount codes for some of the above vendors which would give free shipping, 25% discounts, etc.
     
  2. Kukulcan

    Kukulcan
    Expand Collapse
    iPF Novice

    Joined:
    Apr 21, 2011
    Messages:
    44
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Thanks for the overview, it was very helpful. So I ordered a case from Sena at a good price with 20% coupon.
     
  3. davidalan99

    davidalan99
    Expand Collapse
    iPad Fan

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2011
    Messages:
    167
    Thanks Received:
    16
    Thanks for the great information. For right now I am going with the DODO case. The Oberon, is real nice but in the typing mode it did not seem to fold well in the video. However in the hold it to my cover mode it seemed rock solid.
     
  4. Diane B

    Diane B
    Expand Collapse
    iPad Junkie

    Joined:
    May 8, 2010
    Messages:
    787
    Thanks Received:
    68
    A photo forum member just sent me his second Dodo case. Just got it today. He bought one, got one as gift and thought of me. How nice is that !!!!!!! Love it so far (gen 1). I've been using the Apple case for almost a year but this one is much classier LOL.

    Diane
     
  5. tzimisce

    tzimisce
    Expand Collapse
    iPad Addict

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2010
    Messages:
    1,078
    Thanks Received:
    2
    Since I wrote that six months ago, it has emerged that Dodo has been having a number of problems with its durability, especially around corner pads and splitting frames: just Google 'Dodocase iPad falls out’ and you'll find videos and unhappy users complaining. That was enough for me to take it out of running.

    Right now if you're looking for a Moleskine-style bookbound case, the best options would be Treegloo, Portenzo and Pad and Quill. I eventually went with the Treegloo, because of their customization options and price, although recently they've released new design changes for iPad 2 and thus been swamped with a surge of orders and a 2—3 week backlog, from what I can see from their Facebook page.

    I should also add that Moleskine-style cases, by definition, are made from vinyl (like a dead-tree Moleskine notebook) and not real leather, although for a higher premium Portenzo will build you a bookbound case from genuine leather.
     
  6. davidalan99

    davidalan99
    Expand Collapse
    iPad Fan

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2011
    Messages:
    167
    Thanks Received:
    16
    Again and after much thought I have cancelled my DODO order and it looks like I will go with the one of the Oberon cases, the tree of life style. I have an email into their sales department, so this time I can find out what is in stock prior to order. Once again thanks for the help and review.

    Sent from my iPhone using iPF
     
  7. Pingles

    Pingles
    Expand Collapse
    iPF Novice

    Joined:
    May 31, 2010
    Messages:
    98
    Thanks Received:
    0
    Some folks have disputed whether it's actual leather but I liked this review.

    Yoobao Executive Leather Case for iPad 2 review - bighugenerd

    This and the youtube review convinced me to order one.

    I happened to get one of the earlier stink-a-riffic ones but after two days airing in my garage it is much less offensive. And it sure is purty.
     
  8. davidalan99

    davidalan99
    Expand Collapse
    iPad Fan

    Joined:
    Apr 12, 2011
    Messages:
    167
    Thanks Received:
    16
    Hey tzimisce, thanks again I placed the order with Oberon moments ago, what a find. I got the saddle tree of life
     
  9. tzimisce

    tzimisce
    Expand Collapse
    iPad Addict

    Joined:
    Sep 23, 2010
    Messages:
    1,078
    Thanks Received:
    2
    No worries - all their products are handmade-to-order (usually within 2-3 business days) so there's no question of "out of stock" since your item doesn't come into existence until after you've ordered it. The green tree of life was a very close second choice for me (I have a blue roof of heaven), so I know exactly how it feels.

    I have misgivings about their iPad 2 covers because of the lack of the rear camera port and magnetic activation - but in every other regard, the quality of craftsmanship and design is exceptional. Sometimes I'm in meetings with two or three other iPad users in the room, and invariably they have some sort of serious-minded, corporate-looking leather case - I've recognized Sena and Jack Spade. The Oberon, on the other hand, makes a very bold statement about how cool her owner is. :)

    And, as any Oberon owner can tell you, the pictures don't even come up to a fraction of actually having one in your hand.
     
    #9 tzimisce, Apr 26, 2011
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2011
  10. bishtmoris

    bishtmoris
    Expand Collapse
    iPF Noob

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2011
    Messages:
    5
    Thanks Received:
    0
    I have leather case on my ipod and it provide full body protection.
     

Share This Page



Search tags for this page
aniline leather used in apple leather case
,

designer leather ipad covers

,
oberon design sale
,
pad & quill