A Closer Look: Southern Field Industries Waxed Tote


I have a lot of bags. Probably more than I actually need. However, I always argue that each bag I own serves a different purpose. Beach bag for the beach. Weekender for the weekend. Rucksack for the, um, rucking? Anyway, the one thing I’ve been missing, at least, according to my logic, is a basic every day bag. Something that’s comfortable, always looks good, and that I can use all year long. Well, thanks to the kind folks at newly launched Japanese bag brand Southern Field Industries, and their absolutely stunning Waxed Tote, I am missing no more.

Not only is the bag Japanese-made, but so are all the materials. The body is made from a lightweight waxed canvas, which has the dryest hand of any waxed fabric I’ve ever felt.

The straps and bottom are made from vegetable-tanned cowhide, which is both beautiful and durable.

The lining is made from #9 cotton canvas, which gives the bag a bit more rigidity, without weighing it down. It also keeps the wax from the outer layer off of whatever you’re got inside.

In addition to the main pocket, there are two smaller pockets, which are perfectly sized for your phone, camera, etc.

Every Southern Field Industries bag is handcrafted by the designer. Here you can see the leather-backed rivets that attach the straps.

A closer look at the bottom. After a week of steady use, the corners have already started to show some signs of wear. I can’t want to see how the rest of it breaks in.

All of the stitching is done in tonal thread, which gives the bag a nicely understated appearance. Also, check out the reinforcing stitches on that seam.

One of two pieces of branding, a 3/4″ wide, hand-stamped logo on the leather bottom.

Inside the bag.

Note the reinforced corner on the accordion snap pocket. Just one of a dozen construction details that’ll keep this bag around for years to come.

The second piece of branding, a small tag on the inside. And yes, those are grazing horses.

Waxed tote in the wild.


In case you can’t tell, I love this bag. Not only is it great looking, and exceptionally well-made, it’s also really light, which might seem like a silly thing to highlight, but it’s not often you find a leather bottomed carryall that doesn’t add weight to the load. Admittedly, like most everything else made in Japan, the bag is a little pricey. However, I would argue that the materials and construction more than justify the cost. There’s no doubt that I will have – and enjoy the hell out of – this bag for a long, long time.

For price and purchase info, visit Southern Field Industries, or, for easy ordering to the US, check out Southern Field Industries’ Etsy Shop.