We use materials that show their wear and develop as you use them: waxed canvas, brass, and vegetable-tanned leather. And it’s our philosophy that nothing we make is truly complete until someone uses it, and we really want you to use it!
These materials require a bit of a break in period so they can soften up and perform at their best. Breaking things in is kind of anomalous in consumer goods these days, but we still do it for three reasons:
1. They Last Longer
Raw waxed canvas and leather is stiff and unpliable at first (believe us, we have to work with it). We could use softer materials or artificially distress them, but like a pair of jeans with the knee already blown out, it would rob you of their inherent utility. Starting off tough means more value and more uses for you and fewer resources taken from the planet.
2. They Age Gracefully
You may have noticed that our old bags don’t look the same as the new ones. They’re a little bit darker, a bit more varied in color, have a bit more character, and we think they look a little bit better. This is called patina and it naturally develops as you use your bag. Staying new and fresh looking isn’t the goal, but appreciating the beauty in the uniqueness of their wear.
3. They Connect You to Your Bag
Like a stiff pair of boots, a Garrison on day 100 is a much better bag than a Garrison on day 1. We hope that the break in process will make you appreciate not just the monetary but also the time investment you put into your item. The bag you have is better than anything you could replace it with, and the patina becomes a personal reflection of how you use it.
Our bags are meant to strap to your back, our wallets sit in your pocket, and our planters—well maybe those are meant to sit on a shelf. So we hope you’ll wring every last drop of use out of them, send them back to us to repair, and then use ‘em some more.