This Wool Felt Sleeve Case Is The Comfiest Home You Could Give Your MacBook [Review]


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Do you ever worry that your beloved MacBook’s sleek aluminum shell will get damaged when it’s packed inside your bag with the rest of your gadgets and gizmos. This handmade, wool felt sleeve from MyBanana aims to give your notebook a home of its own, away from sharp keys, USB cables, chargers, and all the other things you might need to pack into your bag when you’re on the road.

Wool Felt Sleeve by MyBanana
Category: Sleeve
Works With: MacBook Air, MacBook Pro
Price: £48+

Its slimline design holds your MacBook Air or Retina MacBook Pro — depending on which size you go for — plus smaller items in a pocket on its front. This is ideal for carrying Lightning cables, an iPhone, or even an iPad mini.

Anything you stick inside the sleeve is secured by two vegatable tanned leather traps with snap fasteners.

Pricing starts at £48 ($56) for the 11-inch MacBook Air sleeve, then rises to £54 ($63) for the 13-inch MacBook Air or Retina MacBook Pro models. If you have a 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro, it’ll cost you £58 ($68).

Let’s find out if it’s worth it.

The Good

I’ve been using this sleeve for several months now, and the thing I love about it is that it’s completely unique. It’s not mass produced on an assembly line that churns out thousands of these cases each week — every one is lovingly made by hand.

These fasteners are super strong.
These fasteners are super strong.

That means you’re unlikely to find anyone else with the same case. I took mine to Mobile World Congress back in Febuary, where I saw hundreds of MacBooks every day — and not one of them was protected with this case.

At MWC, I used the sleeve to protect my MacBook inside my bag, and to prevent it from being scratched or dented by my camera, my iPad mini, and all the cables, pens, and other stuff I had rolling around in there.

It fits incredibly well — it’s not too tight but it’s not too loose — and the leather straps gave me peace of mind when I was pulling my laptop out of my bag; it didn’t matter if I yanked it out at an angle, because my MacBook wasn’t going to fall out.

The pocket on the front of the sleeve was also handy for carrying the odd Lightning cable, and sometimes my iPad mini. You can also fit your MacBook’s charger in there; it’s a bit of a squeeze and I don’t recomment it, but it will fit. But you have to watch what you put in there — more on this below.

Another thing I love about this case is its build quality.

Another thing I love about this case is its build quality. It’s super tough, and everything feels solid and secure, and the stitching and straps are more than strong enough. Mine’s taken quite a battering over the past few months, and it still looks pretty much brand new.

The Bad

The sleeve doesn’t have a handle, so if you wish to carry it by itself — not inside a bag — then you’ll have to tuck it under your arm or trust your grip. And I have to say, the wool doesn’t provide the best grip, especially when it’s carrying a heavy notebook.

If you’re popping to a local cafe and you just want to catch up on some emails over a coffee, then this won’t be too much of an issue. But if you plan on carrying your notebook around all day, then it will.

MacBook chargers are a tight fit.

As I mentioned above, you’ll need to watch what you put in the front pocket of the sleeve. While an iPad mini or some cables are just find, smaller items — such as memory cards — are likely to slip out of the gaps at the sides and get lost. I actually lost a pen this way; I’m just glad it wasn’t something more valuable like an SD card full of photos.

You’ll also want to be careful cramming your charger in there. It’ll fit, but it’ll be tight, and if you happen to drop your laptop and it lands on the charger, it’s more likely to get damaged than if it lands on an flat iPad mini.

The Verdict

Smaller items can fall out of these gaps at the sides.
Smaller items can fall out of these gaps at the sides.

While this sleeve isn’t built for carring a notebook around all day, it’s terrific if you want added protection for your device while it’s inside your bag, or if you want to pop out for a couple of hours and get some work done in a cafe or a library. It’s even good for carrying your laptop to and from the office in the car.

I’m also a big fan of the fact that it’s handmade and completely unique. And because of this, I don’t mind spending a little more on it — not that it’s overly expensive anyway.

Just be careful how you use the front pocket, and make sure you hold it tight when you’re out and about.

Screen Shot 2013-04-10 at 18.56.07Product Name: Wool Felt Sleeve
The Good: Strong, looks good, and completely unique. The most comfortable home you could give your MacBook.
The Bad: No handle and therefore not much grip.
The Verdict If you want a MacBook sleeve that’s unique and well made, then this sleeve from MyBanana is certainly worth a look.
Buy from: MyBanana