Ettinger Wallet Review
[Buyers Guide 2022]
Ettinger is one of the oldest brands we’ve ever reviewed. Founded in 1934, in London, they are a luxury leathercraft brand specializing in bespoke and highly customizable leather goods including and not limited to bags, cases, accessories, and of course wallets. Their story is one of the humble beginnings and still family-run by the Original Owner’s eldest son, Robert Ettinger, they are one of the very last and remaining luxury leather good brands still handmaking, crafting, and designing quality leather goods.
This review is going to be slightly different. Since Ettinger has a huge range of wallets, we want to focus on the entire range as opposed the choosing just one wallet and reviewing that. We’ll be looking into the manufacturing and craftsmanship of Ettinger, their extensive wallet range and what’s right for you, and how they bring this all together into a premium brand will goods made to last the test of time.
Look & Design
Ettinger stocks a wide variety of different wallet types in a variety of styles and capacities for all your needs. From classically designed bifolds to a huge selection of long wallets made to fit within a coat pocket. It’s clear just by looking through Ettinger’s range that these wallets are designed in a very traditional manner with a look and feel you’d come to expect and get from wallets made back when Ettinger was founded in the early 1930s.
Another great aspect of Ettinger is its array of customization options and variations available on each and every one of its wallets. Take Ettinger’s Bridle Billfold wallet for example. This wallet not only comes in 9 different color variations (ranging from blue, green, purple, and black) with allows an optional monogram in the form of up to five characters etched into the leather (an additional £30.00).
Finally, we must talk about the craftsmanship of Ettinger’s wallets and their choice of leather. As we previously mentioned, Ettinger takes great pride in quality control and craftsmanship with each and every one of their leather goods being handmade and produced within the United Kingdom. Ettinger says it takes at least 5 years to train new craftsmen while having employees with a collective 600 of leathercraft experience.
Ettinger takes great pride in the leather they source and use. What I love about Ettinger is that they use a wide range of different leather types, swapping between different types depending on the products they made and the unique differences in each leather, and the advantages they provide. In total, in their wallets, Ettinger uses at least four different types of leather including Crocodile, Shadow Hide, Calf, and Goat Leather (all full-grain). You can read a little bit more about each different type of leather below or click through to Ettinger’s official website to read more on the unique advantages each provides.
Crocodile Leather – A unique highly durable leather. Most notable is its unique texture which has a unique grain look and feel.
Shadow Hide Leather – A waxy full-grain leather vegetable tanned. Its hand-finished with many layers of waxes and oils to give it a deep, rich appearance.
Fine Grain Calf Leather – Calf leather is both highly durable, and soft and supple.
Goat Leather – Ever heard of goat leather? This amazing leather is known for its softness, flexibility, and strength and has been used throughout history.
Overall, I cannot fault the pure quality of each of these different types of leather. Ettinger is one of the only wallet brands I’ve come across that goes above and beyond to match each leather good with the correct and corresponding leather that best suits the wallet’s needs and functionality.
Functionality & Utility
When it comes to how well Ettinger’s wallets function as, well, actual wallets, I have mixed opinions. Most of the wallets provided take very classic, traditional, and quite generic designs. The main designs are bifolds in varying sizes and feature many which include optional features like coin pouches and passcases. Ettinger is also a big fan of the large long wallet a type of wallet that isn’t very popular at present (due to its big size).
Wallets have gone beyond the typical realms of card and cash capacity with many brands developing innovative ways to store and access your belongings. RFID Protection is now and must in any wallet (which Ettinger does not include at all), while innovations such as Pop-Up Wallets, Quick Access Slots, and additional storage for extra items. Ettinger doesn’t provide anything like this in their wallets. This is not to say Ettinger Wallets are bad, far from it, but the lack of innovation in nearly 100 years leaves you feeling very underwhelmed, especially with what’s on offer on the market today.
As you’d expect from any so-called luxury brand and one that handmakes all its products prices vary quite considerably and you’ll be paying for this privilege. As you’d imagine these prices reflect how large the wallet of choice is. For example, the slimline Travel Pass Holder comes in at a price of £115.00, while all the larger-sized long and bi-fold wallets are more expensive starting at £185.00 and reaching a high of £330.00. You’ll also pay a premium if you want customization options. For any monogram, it will cost you an additional £30.00.
Overall, I was very happy with my time using some of the Ettinger wallets on offer. The best aspect by far of the wallets is their amazing quality, durability, and longevity. They really are premium wallets with fantastic attention to detail and quality use of materials. The only downside, as mentioned before, is the lack of innovation in the wallet’s features. For more information and the full details on Ettinger’s range of wallets visit their official website using the link below.
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