Pare down your travel kit with this shoulder-saving MacBook Pro sleeve

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Holds just enough to stay productive. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac
Waterfield's MacBook Outback Solo holds just enough to keep you productive. Photo: Rob LeFebvre/Cult of Mac

I’ll admit it — I’ve got a thing for these waxed canvas and leather bags from Waterfield. I’ve ended up using the impeccably designed Staad backpack and the classy Nintendo 3DS case long after my reviews of them were published. These bags and cases from the San Francisco design collective are warm, inviting and just get better with age and use.

Let’s face it, though: Sometimes you only want to carry your laptop and a couple of accessories, and that’s it. Waterfield’s latest design, the MacBook Outback Solo, is a minimalist sleeve made of the same strong canvas material and rich, thick, buttery-smooth leather as the other bags in the line. It can be paired with a carrying strap that turns the sleeve into a messenger bag. While our very own Charlie Sorrel called the iPad version of this bag a man-purse, I’m thinking of this more as a shoulder-saving device — the fewer things I end up having to carry, the better.

This little sleeve is perfect for exactly that.

COTE: The leather iPad sleeve you’ll fall in love with

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I don’t really like using iPad cases; I tend to put one on just before I hand my device over to my kids, and then it comes off again as soon as they’re done. One of the best things about the iPad mini is its form factor, but that’s lost when you slap on a big, bulky case.

COTE by BUKcase
Category: Sleeve
Works With: iPad mini
Price: $133

But although I like my iPad to be naked when I use it, I need some protection when I’m on the go and carrying it around. That’s when I’m most likely to drop it — and when it’s most susceptible to getting scratched up in the bottom of my bag.

I’ve found the COTE leather sleeve from BUKcase to be the perfect solution to this problem.

The diffr3nt|sleeve: A Minimalist Masterpiece For Your Laptop [Deals]

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The diffr3nt|sleeve is going to be your MacBook Pro’s best friend.

The ideal combination of minimal design and durable protection, these sleeves keep your MacBook safe from the daily torment of scratches from desks, notebooks, purses and backpacks alike. And Cult of Mac Deals has the diffr3nt|sleeve for just $29.99 for a limited time.

HEX Brings Summer Early, Launches Nautically-Styled ‘Cabana’ MacBook Bags and Sleeves

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Back when I lived in SoCal, I was fixated with the coast. The sand, the surf, the sailboats. In fact, I often sailed out of Oxnard, a sleepy seaside burb just north of Los Angeles, which also happens to hide Mac-friendly bag-maker HEX.

Makes sense, then, that they’d launch the nautically themed Cabana collection, a heavily striped gathering of MacBook carriers and cases, and even an iPhone case. And nothing says “boating” more than a copious helping of stripes. But the bags aren’t just all about looks; they’re also all constructed of tough, water-resistant waxed canvas. I can practically hear the seagulls.

Cult of Mac Holiday Gift Guide: iPad Lovers’ Edition [Updated]

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Believe it or not, Black Friday has already come and gone. Pretty soon the Christmas season will begin, and we’ll mark this midwinter festival by getting together with friends and family and continuing to drink and eat far too much.

Meanwhile, we also buy gifts for those same friends and family members, whether they want them or not. Luckily, we’re here to help, and if you follow our festive advice, your gifts just might make it into the “wanted” category.

From now until Christmas, Cult of Mac will be putting together holiday gift guys full of ideas for the special ones in your life, no matter what their interests or your budget. Today, we’re looking at gifts for people who are like, totally into their iPads. Totally.