Mint Cases: a First Class Leather Slip Case for MacBook Air

| In-Depth Review

There are carry cases for a MacBook Air (MBA) that have room for accessories, and there are snap-on, plastic clamshell cases to protect a MacBook Air, but another very elegant, professional approach is a finely crafted cow-hide leather slip case from Mint Cases.

Overview

The very first thing I noticed out of the box was that the slip case arrives in a 100 percent cotton carry bag with a draw string. That's a great idea because 1) there's no plastic bag to immediately throw away and 2) it's a great way to store the leather slip case when not in use for an extended period.

The cases ships in a friendly, reuseable cotton bag with drawstring.

Inside the bag is a quality, tasteful Thank You card with a greeting and contact information. Out of the box, I got a good feeling about this product.

The case I asked to review is the Rustic, burgundy color. Other colors in the Rustic series are black, dark brown, brown and tan (US$49). In the Executive series, the available colors are black, dark brown and brown ($39). The difference is that the Rustic series uses premium grade leather that's about 3 mm thick, and has a non-abrasive, wool felt interior. The Executive series, while still genuine leather, has a thinner, soft suede lining, and the case is a bit thinner and lighter overall.

Rustic colors (from bottom): black, dark brown, tan, burgundy, light brown.

The Rustic case reviewed here is well made, smooth, and feels great to the touch. The thread is industrial grade nylon, gauge 207 and is double stitched near the edges of the opening. See photo below.)

A case for a 13-inch MBA is 13.5 x 10.25 x 0.24 inches. (34.3 x 26 x 0.6 cm). It weighs 10.5 oz (297 g.) There is also a corresponding series for the 11-inch MacBook Air. All the Mint Cases are handmade in the United States and built to order.

A snug fit, yet easy to remove.

Using the Product

This solution is great for times when you want to protect the MBA when mobile, but don't expect it to incur any abuse when it's being used, say, in your lap. That way, there's no extra weight or incumbrance when the MBA is in use, and you get to enjoy the natural beauty and feel of the MBA's aluminum.

Next, in a modest fall on a hard surface, even a plastic case could be scratched, damaged or crack. A leather case can absorb some modest impact, (depending on how it hits), protect the MBA, and remain looking good for a long time.

Inside of Rustic cases is all wool felt.

If you visit the Mint Cases site, there are a lot of mentions about making a good impression on others, and in my opinion, the company's product reflects that approach. It has style, taste, and looks professional. That's in contrast to, say, a snap-on plastic case with glitzy colors and decals that might create the wrong impression of you in a business meeting.

As mentioned above, the quality of the stitching is superb and looks as if it will last longer than the lifetime of the MacBook. Plus, unlike a plastic clamshell case, you'll never see fingerprints.

Macro photo of quality double stitching on open edges.
Photo taken with olloclip Macro lens.

My 13-inch MBA weighs about 3 pounds (1.4 kg), and an additional 10 ounces when moving about doesn't feel like much of an extra burden. I am pleased with the felt interior that provides just the right amount of friction to make one confident that the MBA remains securely in the case. The case dimensions and design also contributes to that security. It's a good, snug fit, yet it's easy to remove the MBA. However, I did note that if you hold the case very gently by the edges, perfectly vertical, with no gripping presure, the MBA will slide out ... slowly. Any gripping pressure at all or an angle less than 90 degrees vertical will prevent that.

A similar product is available for the iPad, in tan color only. More colors are being added.

The website notes: "Because our Rustic cases are hand fashioned by artisans in the USA only after you place your order, they take 5 to 8 business days to ship."

Recommendation

There are several ways to protect your MacBook Air, and there are different environments. For example, as a writer, my MBA tends to be scattered here and there in my office as I move things around, often at some risk to be scratched. A soft, leather slip case is a great way to protect it. The same would apply for general business use when carrying it to meetings onsite or offsite.

Another advantage is that a leather case like this protects an MBA in a larger backpack or carry case from keys, cables, and metal accessories and yet when the MBA is in use, there's no extra weight, and it always looks great. If this strikes you as the way to go, this case is a great solution. I give it my highest recommendation.

Finally, considering how expensive cases are these days for relatively small iPhones, the price is modest and the value is high. It's simple and perfect.

Product: Rustic MacBook Air case

Company: Mint Cases

List Price: US$49 (Rustic); $39 (Executive)

Pros:

Good protection, premium grade cow-hide leather, MacBook Air won't slip out, five colors to chose from, high quality stitching, full coverage of non-abrasive wool felt on interior, won't scratch, crack or gather fingerprints, looks professional, feels great to the touch, excellent value.

Cons:

None noted.

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