You may not be into overstuffed leather sofas, leather car seats and jackets worthy of the wardrobe department of The Sopranos. But it’s hard to deny the sense of class and luxury leather accessories can add to a computer workstation. And you can really dress up your desk with Harber London’s leather desk mat and mouse pad combo.
Harber London desk mat review: Luxury and protection
A good desk mat has three main benefits. It protects the finish of the desk underneath it. It adds a stable surface for peripherals that also feels good to the touch. And, ideally, it adds to the room’s decor in a good way. If it also helps manage your cables, all the better.
It’s safe to say Harber London’s XL desk mat does all those things. It does so at a somewhat high price — but you pay for quality, don’t you? Well, some people do.
The review samples I received looked exactly as they do in Harber London’s photographs (you can also see examples in the wild near the bottom of this post and in one our Setups articles).
Both the XL leather desk pad and matching mouse pad are tan leather with a soft, gray microfiber lining.
However, you can also choose a felt lining made of 100% wool. Harber London recommends felt for somewhat rough-hewn or natural wood surfaces. On its site, commenters note that the accessories with felt linings can slide around a bit. I chose microfiber, recommended for glass or smooth wooden tables.
Look and feel
Craftsmen in Spain make Harber London’s leather accessories out of full-grain, vegetable-tanned cowhide leather. It’s meant to age naturally and develop character-oozing patina. And looking at and handling Haber London’s products, you believe it will do just that.
Both the desk mat and mouse pad have the look and feel of quality leather and excellent workmanship. The leather is supple. The stitching for the microfiber lining is even. The lining grips the smooth desk lightly but doesn’t stick to it.
I noticed the padding is not flush with the leather top, but sticks out a few millimeters all around the edge. That’s true of both the desk mat and the mouse pad. That may not be to everyone’s taste, but it’s precisely cut and looks good. It probably also protects the leather edges to some extend.
Even the branding is classy. Just an embossed Harber London under the tiniest of logos at bottom center, with no color added. On the desk mat, the logo is even with the cable pass-through at the top, creating symmetry.
A cut-through pass for cables
The desk mat features a cut-through passage for cables. It’s a slit in the leather near the top that can fit some cords from devices you keep on the mat, like your keyboard. It helps cut down on cable clutter. We found we had to cut through stitching on the microfiber side to fully open it up. And the thicker the cable, the more it may disrupt the mat’s lay on the surface.
The accessories roll right out from the box to sitting flat on the desk. Though the felt-lined versions may provide more padding, the microfiber ones offered enough thickness and stability. Peripherals placed on them feel stable in place. The mouse moves easily. The desk mat is certainly more comfortable for elbows and forearms than the desk itself.
The finer points
As mentioned, you can choose 100% wool felt or a soft microfiber lining. The desk mat comes in three sizes: medium (19.6 inches x 11.8 inches), large (31.49 inches x 12.59 inches) and extra large (31.49 inches x 17.71 inches). Mouse pads are 11.4 x 9 inches. Final measurements may vary slightly, Harber notes.
Each product comes in black, tan or navy colors.
Pricing: worth the investment for those who prioritize quality
All in all, the Harber London XL desk mat and mouse pad seem worth the investment. You can find less-expensive options, but with these you know you’re not losing quality. You’re just paying for it.