Not sure exactly when Telfar appeared on my radar, but ever since I knew of the existence of the ‘Telfar Bag,’ short for the Shopping Bag from the brand, I knew I would buy it one day. It’s really is the Telfar logo that got me so obsessed!
TELFAR is a unisex fashion brand based in New York City, specifically in Bushwick, Brooklyn. Telfar Clemens, a queer Liberian-American fashion designer, founded Telfar in 2005.
Height 10 3/4″, Width 15″, Depth 5″, Drop 21″
100% Vegan Leather (yes, it is plastic and smells like plastic in the first couple of wears)
Made in China
WHAT I LOVE:
It is made from 100% Vegan Leather, and that basically is faux leather, polyester aka plastic! I typically stay away from polyester materials when it comes to buying fashion brand new. The first reason is that I’m consciously making an effort to buy used and reduce plastic usage. Secondly, polyester bags tend to show signs of wear, tears and do not last long compared to, for example, real leather bags. However, I’ve decided to buy and keep this plastic TF bag because of so many reasons.
First of all, I don’t own any navy shopper bag like this, and I have been looking for something like this to travel with for quite some time. The medium size fits a laptop, my lunch, and my daily essentials. It has a zippered compartment that runs pretty deep, so I usually leave my wallet and more important stuff in there! So the practicality is there! So far, I have not noticed any scratches or damage which is really good!
Lastly, as mentioned above, the embossed extruded TF logo is definitely my most favorite thing on this bag! I think it’s screams designer without all of the fuss and embellishment.
WHAT I DON’T LOVE:
My first impression of the bag is not as pleasant, and I’ve got to admit and be honest with you that it smells like plastic. After two weeks, and I still occasionally smell it but not as strong as the very first two days of wearing it to work.
I wish Telfar would make the long cross-body straps adjustable. I love the dual strap design, however, the cross-body straps unfortunately are not adjustable. They make the bag hang quite low and funny on my body figure, and I’m 5ft5. But with a thick puffer coat and some winter layer, the cross-body straps work.
Overall, the Telfar Medium Shopping Bag has been great as my work bag that I can throw my lunch, daily survival stuff, and my 13” MacBook Pro if I want to. Because of its plastic materials, I don’t mind it being scratched up or stolen worn while traveling or on public transportation. I can dress it up (as you can see below in all 3 outfits featured) or down, easily.
In addition, the shopping boxy bag shape makes it very convenient for me to reach my hands in to find things. There’s a snap closure that comes in handy lots of times. It’s versatile, and I can easily pair it with my casual and even more dressed-up outfits. I’ve traveled with it many times, and it seems to hold up well and keeps its shape.
I’d often get people complimented on my Telfar bag, and it’s pretty fun to spot people who’d rock their Telfar bags on the streets as well. It photographs well and is a great addition to my bag collection!
UPDATED REVIEW – February 2022
I still use this bag as a carry-on bag when I travel and as a laptop bag for work at a coffee shop kinda day. It’s lost its boxy shape, and the corners have tears now. Yes, it doesn’t look that good anymore, but I’ve had and used it so much in the past 2 years. I’ve gotten so many questions and compliments at the most random places when I travel. In New York, it’s everywhere, and a lot of people still love and wear their Telfar bags. I love mine, but I think I’d have to retire it soon because of the conditions.