Gosh, This Lyonhart Backpack Is Handsome

Photo: Lyonhart Bag Company

Photo: Lyonhart Bag Company

File the name Lyonhart Bag Company away for future reference, because you're going to want every design from this Oakland brand.

Niamh Lyonhart runs the company out of her East Oakland warehouse studio, where she makes all of her bags—from design to construction to hammering the last rivet—by hand. Her materials are sourced locally and domestically, when possible. That includes waxed canvas from Martexin, (a family business that has been producing fabric since the 1800s), surplus liner fabric from the Carhartt factory, and sturdy, bridle-weight leather handles and straps from a local California business. The hardware is solid brass from a Midwest family business. Lyonhart constructs her bags with double seams for durability, and the areas that get the most stress are reinforced with solid brass rivets.

Seriously, she has thought of everything, and most of her bags still ring in under $200.

All of the socially-conscious details are nice, but this isn't just a feel-good purchase to establish your progressive bona fides. Lyonhart makes damn handsome bags.  For summer travel, I'm eyeing this Minipack ($198). The water-resistant canvas will keep my phone and camera safe from any unexpected summer showers, and the bag is roomy enough to fit essentials like a light jacket, water bottle, and sunscreen. I prefer hands-free options when I'm on the go, but Lyonhart also makes beautiful shoulder bags if you're in the market for a tote.

If you're looking to support local makers, Lyonhart is an easy choice. Good-looking, hand-made bags at reasonable prices: what's not to love?