How does the age old saying go? Testicles, spectacles, wallet and watch? Every mans daily essentials range depending upon his call of duty. Some of us carry a pocket watch, others a flashlight, some a pack, but all of us carry a wallet. If you’re still carrying a 3-inch thick leather job with 42 credit cards, it’s time to dump it. It’s 2014 and unless you haven’t decided to embrace technology at all, there is little to no need for you to carry around that mess on a daily basis. You don’t need to be a minimalist to understand how convenient it is carrying only whats needed.
Our friends at Bellroy from Australia have set themselves on a mission to make your pocket happy. Their focus is aimed at traveling smart and light. I’ve had my eye on a few of their wallets for some time now and with a couple of trips lined up, I decided to grab a pair of them. My first choice, the Slim Sleeve is the perfect front pocket wallet that is just enough for everyday needs. The Elements Travel Wallet is aimed at those of us that require organization and protection for a wide range of travel assignments.
When you purchase your wallet, it comes in a really good looking cardboard sleeve. The Elements Travel Wallet on the left has a nice topographic design complimenting it.
I’m kind of a packaging nut so it was nice to see they take such care in the way their product is delivered.
From the stitch design to the subtle Bellroy logo embossed on the front, the attention to detail is great.
Protection starts with YKK water-resistant zippers. As you already noticed from the image at the top of the page, Bellroy’s water-resistant, all-weather leather has done a great job so far keeping the contents of my wallet dry. In order to test the seal, I ran the faucet over the wallet for 3 minutes, then took it outside and let the hose loose for about 30 seconds. Everything inside was 100% dry. If you travel or live somewhere that isn’t enough, maybe you shouldn’t carry your wallet over your head as a rain shield?
Opening the wallet, the first thing you notice is the silver pen hooked into the spine. On the right, your passport has its own spot and on the left an assortment of compartments for credit cards, business cards, cash, and even a house key.
Here is a good look from Bellroy of an exploded view of the wallets potential.
Even with my iPhone 5 stuffed inside, it fits into my rear jeans pocket.
If you don’t need to pack a passport, the wallet comes with this handy graph paper notebook.
Unfortunately, I do wish that it fit my Field Notes memo book. I understand why they wanted to keep the size down (so it still fits in your pocket), but it would have been nice.
The liner design is really great, very manly. There are two compartments behind the slip for the passport. Great for cards, notes, receipts, cash or boarding passes.
Right above the passport compartment is slip for business cards. I can get around 20 in without issue.
“A great all-around outdoor travel wallet with great protection and style.”
So what do I think? I haven’t taken a trip overseas yet but it has become a great business wallet for me. I can carry enough business cards, use the notepad, carry clients business cards and even slide my iPhone 5 inside. The wallet has been living inside my backpack and after a few weeks of being tossed around, its still looking good. It has become my go to wallet for cycling as well. It fits into my rear side jersey pocket, keeping my iPhone, cash and a few other small items safe. It makes a great all-around outdoor wallet. If you want something with similar features but a tad smaller, look to the Elements Pocket Wallet or Elements Sleeve Wallet.
As I mentioned above, the Slim Sleeve is a great front pocket wallet. Of course, it can go in any pocket, I just happen to be a front pocket wallet wearer. Why? I don’t like to think I’m paranoid but with all of my travels, I’ve had enough worrying about pickpockets. Also, who wants to sit on their wallet all day long? This wallet is a minimalists dream.
Both front and back are made of full-grain, vegetable tanned leather. It holds just what you need and nothing more.
When I mentioned it’s slim, I meant it. Here it is next to a stack of 6 credit cards.
There are 2 quick access card slots on either side that hold 2 cards each. I happen to only carry 4 cards daily so its perfect for my needs.
If you need to carry more cards, slide them in front of the pull tab for quick access. I was able to stuff 3 more in. FYI, business cards do not fit in this compartment.
Cash and receipts fit great on either side, though I suggest you put them on the left as you won’t need a pull tab to grab them.
“A must have for those seeking less is more.”
So what do I think? If you need something slim and small, give it a look. I keep it in my front pocket and even chest pocket at times depending on attire. It’s almost so small you almost can’t feel it in your pocket, so keep that in mind on laundry day. Even fully loaded, I am surprised how slim it remains. A must have for those seeking less is more.
As a gentleman, both of these wallets are on my recommended list. Sure, we can all carry around cheap ziploc bags, but don’t we deserve more? Your wallet is as much as part of who you are as your watch. It travels with you every day of your life. As part of your EDC kit, get something worthwhile in your pocket that may even be a conversation starter.
High-quality, good looking wallets that function well. The Elements Travel Wallet is extremely durable and the Slim Sleeve keeps my pocket happy and without bulk. Find a local retailer and check them out yourself.