Sturdy American Bags from J.W. Hulme | A Continuous Lean.

Sturdy American Bags from J.W. Hulme

Aug 10th, 2010 | Categories: Bags, Made in the USA, Minnesota | by Michael Williams


One of my favorite bag companies out there is Minnesota’s J.W. Hulme. The company makes classic looking canvas and leather bags, plus a variety of different accessories. It is one of those rare brands that I want one of everything from. I was introduced to the bags years ago, when they supplied carry-alls to Orvis. The two have since gone their separate ways in what I believe to be an amicable split. Either way, it must be water under the bridge at this point. Thankfully J.W. Hulme survived and lives on to supply good looking bags to those who appreciate well made things. Perhaps Orvis and J.W. Hulme can revisit things now that Orvis taking a renewed interest in American make with their U.S. Patent collection. (More on that coming soon.)

The new Sporting Originals canvas bags (the lightly colored ones like the above) are just hitting stores (including select Steven Alan and Barneys stores) now — in case you were wondering. Also, pictured below are some of the company’s SS11 bags (the gray canvas and leather items). It is great to see the brand progress and apparently prosper. There was a recent Wall Street Journal article about how the brand has navigated a tumultuous past few years. It was interesting to see that ACL made it into that piece. It also makes me proud to know change is being made for the positive and people are keeping their jobs. At the end of the day, that is what really matters. Well, that and there are sturdy American-made bags in this world.

Comments: 23

23 Comments to “Sturdy American Bags from J.W. Hulme”

  1. Ted
    on Aug 11th, 2010
    @ 12:22 AM

    I’ve always loved the classic Orvis brief case. This is an amazing story
    with a happy ending (and I hope it stays that way).
    Great WSJ article too. Thanks for doin what you do.

  2. The Dude
    on Aug 11th, 2010
    @ 8:49 AM

    Nice, I met one of the J.W. Hulme designers at the Ace not too long ago. Good guy.

  3. Raoul Duke
    on Aug 11th, 2010
    @ 9:04 AM

    @DapperDude your website has a very familiar look to it. Can’t quite put my finger on it?

  4. jacob
    on Aug 11th, 2010
    @ 10:07 AM

    @raoul duke where’s your website, smartass?

    @the dude nice work with the blog (or whatever you want to call it).

  5. Raoul Duke
    on Aug 11th, 2010
    @ 10:25 AM

    Why it’s right here little jacob – http://bit.ly/a1yzoZ

    Want me to put that glass of “shut the fuck up” in the microwave for you?

  6. Rob
    on Aug 11th, 2010
    @ 10:34 AM

    Good to see you give recognition to these folks – I carry a Hulme briefcase to work every day, and it has served me well and holds up beautifully, and it does give some satisfaction to know that the company is keeping manufacturing jobs in the States.

  7. Isaac
    on Aug 11th, 2010
    @ 2:34 PM

    I am from MN and get into Duluth Pack’s store in Duluth at least twice a year, but I’ve barely heard about JW Hulme. Thanks for the heads-up, I’ll check them out locally.

  8. Wjletch
    on Aug 11th, 2010
    @ 5:19 PM

    Ive got a duffle, brief case, and garment bag from them. Pretty much indestructible! Well at least until my puppy got ahold of the duffle handle the other day. Still hurts to think about it but I think they have a pretty fair repair service. Awesome post

  9. Matt
    on Aug 11th, 2010
    @ 8:26 PM

    @Raoul Duke! You are alive! Will Dr. Gonzo like to meet with the hotel manager?

  10. Margaret
    on Aug 12th, 2010
    @ 12:47 AM

    Gorgeous stuff. Oh, and so sturdy. And oh, so American. I love your blog ! It’s all that guy talk. Sweet. It’s nice to read. I really mean it.

  11. The Dude
    on Aug 12th, 2010
    @ 8:35 AM

    @ Jacob Thanks for the feedback, much appreciated.

    @ “Raoul Duke” Good taste is good taste. I’ll leave it at that, I don’t spend my time trying to come across as a badass on blog forums (under an assumed name, no less) because I’m not a colossal DB.

    @ Michael Williams My apologies for polluting your forum with this pubescent banter.

  12. Alex
    on Aug 12th, 2010
    @ 9:59 AM

    Nice stuff – but $260.00 for a small dopp kit? Yowsers.

  13. Andrea
    on Aug 12th, 2010
    @ 10:43 AM

    I’m in the process of breaking in and getting to know one of the larger tote/handbags (in century black.) Buying American+Good Design+Good Materials was the formula for my basic requirements. A great bonus is that these folks are wonderful to do business with. Save up your coffee change and invest. You’ll be glad you did.

  14. Gary
    on Aug 12th, 2010
    @ 11:06 AM

    @ Alex These prices seem in line with smaller American manufacture, Saddleback, Billykirk, etc. I mean, yeah, it hurts but they’re not being stitched together in Malaysia by someone being paid fifty cents a day. I don’t feel bad about paying for quality and supporting Americans being paid fair wages. I do feel bad about paying this much or more for some “designer” bag that is stitched together in Malaysia in the same factory where its knockoffs are being made, by the same fifty cents a day workers.

  15. Jessica
    on Aug 12th, 2010
    @ 3:32 PM

    I’d love to have them all. I’m agreement with Gary–the prices are only high when you don’t take their being handmade by Americans in America into consideration. We’ve been trained that the lowest price is the best value, it’s quite contrary though.

  16. joanne
    on Aug 12th, 2010
    @ 4:40 PM

    nice.
    i am thinking i would love for you to blog on men’s cologne.

  17. PatagoniaCommunity
    on Aug 12th, 2010
    @ 5:01 PM

    Michael, how would you say these compare to Filson bags in terms of materials and craftsmanship?

  18. Tom
    on Aug 12th, 2010
    @ 11:51 PM

    The dog seals it for me on the No. 4. I’m a sucker for anything with a bird dog on it.

  19. BP
    on Aug 13th, 2010
    @ 12:35 AM

    You should be proud that’s stone cold awesome! I’m Floored.

    Everybody y’alls sites are dank.

    Being negative is for the non-enlightened who don’t hit up ACL, have to keep reminding myself of that.

  20. Ryan
    on Aug 13th, 2010
    @ 11:07 AM

    Great bags, Better People… great write-up MW.

    Patagonia- I’ve had both Filson and JWH, and they are both great, the JWH’s definitely have more details, linings, pockets, and more supple leathers. Also the fact that they have some variety in their canvases and leather colors make my collection more complete.

  21. PatagoniaCommunity
    on Aug 13th, 2010
    @ 6:55 PM

    Thanks for the info Ryan. Nice pic of the Hulmes on your site.

  22. elysemarie
    on Aug 14th, 2010
    @ 10:22 AM

    thanks for a great post! It’s nice to quality american craftsmanship getting attention as opposed to crummy high fashion stuff that is made overseas. Loved the molding and details of the leather bottle cases, and the canvas and leather bags are beautiful yet subtle; love it. I may have to check this out for gifts this coming holiday season…

  23. Ryan
    on Aug 22nd, 2010
    @ 10:44 PM

    Thanks Patagonia… there’ll be a few more up soon..