Guide to buying backpacks

Checklist for your next bag… FAQ

We’ve been working behind the scenes to transfer this website over to new servers – long story short, make this website faster. Whilst doing so we discovered how many ways we can make the new website even better, so rather than a straight up swap – we’ve ended up starting again. This is not as quick as we’d like.
We’ve had lots of new customers from all over the world – many asking similar questions, which we love to answer – please never stop asking! Even if it’s covered here, please ask again! There is never one answer!

Cora + Spink OFFICIAL bags and backpack FAQ

  • Is it real leather? Yes. (comedy value alone doesn’t let me leave this question with a one word answer) Our bags are made from 24 ounce cotton canvas with real leather/suede. The leather and suede we use is selected and tanned in batches to our requirements – this means we select the grade, the thickness, the colour, the texture and the finish of our leather. The leather is ‘made’ for us to our specification, and we’re very proud of our leather team in Kolkata, India. We don’t and won’t ever use fake leather – it’s bad for the environment, doesn’t last, negates the whole ethos of Cora + Spink.


  • What’s 24 ounce canvas? 24 oz canvas is a measurement of how heavy the canvas is – this also relates to how thick and durable the canvas of the bag is. We use the metric system at the mill to determine the exact weight of the cloth, which we aim to be between 675 gsm and 710 gsm per batch. To relate this ‘weight’ or ‘thickness of cloth’ to something at hand – your average denim jeans will be 8 to 14 oz denim. The extra weight of the canvas we use in the bags makes them longer lasting, nicer to feel, significantly more substantial and much more ‘real’. When you feel a Cora + Spink bag for the first time, or compare it to a high street bought bag you will immediately feel the difference. It’s this ‘wow’ factor that means once you’ve bought a C+S bag you’ll never, ever look back – it’s that different, unique, nice – add more positive words here… you get the idea.


  • Why don’t you make your bags in England? This is possibly the most controversial question I get asked, and I get it asked all the time. The simple answer is we can’t. We (royal we here – Tim writing) have been a huge backer and advocate of English manufacturing since first entering the world of fashion 20 years ago. In all of those years to the present day we use local suppliers for all manner of goods and services, but the manufacturing of the bags has completely eluded us. Most, if not all fashion goods, can be made in the UK – the growth of fast fashion has seen many UK factories grow, and has seen brands bring manufacturing back from off shore. But this has not been the case of luggage, leather and bag companies. The production skills to make our bags at the price, quality and quantity we demand are no longer here in the UK – which is sad, it is something we will address in the future, but unfortunately not feasible for now.


  • Where do you make your bags? We proudly manufacture all of our bags and wallets in Kolkata, India. We have a dedicated workshop and facilities in Kolkata – set up to our exacting standards with a dedicated workforce. We have a team of production specialists who look after sourcing and production. We have pattern cutters and sample machinists who look after developing new styles and developments. Then we have dedicated production team, split into teams that specialise in leather, leather cutting, canvas cutting, leather stitching, pre-production assembly, assembly, stitching, finishing, quality control, packing and shipping. All of our leather comes from tanneries in the Kolkata area (Kolkata is huge) our canvas is woven and finished locally too.


  • When will my order arrive? We process all orders to be despatched the same day – all orders received before 4 pm will be sent that day via Royal Mail signed for post. If you would like your item to be expedited – please let us know and we will get it to you faster! The more time you give us the more options we have, including couriers and Royal Mail express/special services.


  • Do you make children’s bags? Short answer is no. Long answer is yes. Our bags come in 9 different shapes and sizes, half the reason we (royal – Tim) got into the world of fashion was because from a very young age I was obsessed with dressing and clothing myself. I was a delightful child – I didn’t like anything made or aimed at children of a particular age (tea cosy hats were a particular favourite). Our current line up, and the past ranges have been bought by and for a huge age range of people. So, no we don’t make bags for children, but that doesn’t mean children can’t use our bags or find them incredibly useful! They’re built to last after-all, they’re great for goal posts! – (NB. We’re working on a range of specially designed young children’s bags for release in 2017 – watch this space) 


  • How do I care for my Cora + Spink bag? To look after your bag you should take care to remove mud or obvious marks when they happen. The best way to do this is with a nearly dry cloth to manually pick off the offending ‘stuff’, or if you’ve allowed the stain to dry brush it off with a stiff natural brush. Once the detritus has all but been removed a damp cloth (water only) can be used to tease out any remaining mark with gentle dabbing and wiping – try not to scrub as this can push the dirt further into the fibres. You’ll find in time that as the bag ages and mellows to your way of using it, small marks and scuffs will add to he bag – creating it’s own patina. This should be treasured rather than avoided. One tip is to treat your new bag the same way you would a good pair of raw denim jeans – let them develop over time. All the materials in the bag are naturally long lasting, you need do nothing!


  • Will my laptop fit this bag? Each bag is designed to carry everyday essentials, we classify carrying a laptop, phone, tablet and sandwiches as essentials – so yes, your laptop should fit the bag. But each laptop varies quite significantly – we used to be specific and state 13/15/17/19 inch laptops would fit particular bags, but this was not always true. Have a look at the bag description, measure your laptop, drop us a line… we’ll soon let you know.