- Handbag startup Dagne Dover has made a name for itself as the go-to work bag brand for professionals.
- Its 365 collection offers a wide range of styles, all made with neoprene, that nail the day-to-night transition and work well for all sorts of uses.
- The Ryan and Weston Laptop Bags (both $US135 for medium, $US155 for large) are the newest additions, so we tried them to see how they stack up to the rest of the rest of the collection.
- Suffice it to say, we were all impressed by these sleek but seriously versatile laptop bags that balance fashion and function all in one.
- Read more about Dagne Dover in our Buying Guides: The best women’s work bags and The best women’s laptop bags
I wish I could carry my favourite leather tote bag to work – but frankly, it’s impractical. Though the style is classic, the thin straps are too weak to carry the weight of my day’s worth of supplies and the wide-open interior leaves much to be desired in terms of organisation. It’s a dilemma commuters and professionals alike know all too well – struggling to find a bag that strikes the balance between comfort and practicality, with a look that still exudes an air of professionalism.
While I’m not planning on giving up my favourite leather tote anytime soon, I will be retiring it to weekend duty in favour of something a little more practical.
Luckily, I didn’t have to search far to find a perfect, work-appropriate bag. My team has already sung the praises of Dagne Dover, a brand that makes intelligently designed bags for professional women, and men, who value both fashion and function. The brand already has a running list of commuter-friendly bags, including a carry-all gym bag, a professional leather tote, and a work-appropriate backpack, among others.
Both the Ryan and Weston are made with neoprene (the same material used to make wet suits for scuba diving), and come in a range of rich neutral colours. The combination of the distinct-looking fabric with a style that resembles a briefcase creates an appealing aesthetic that passes in both formal and casual environments, truly embodying the purpose of the 365 collection. While the unique style is what might draw customers to these laptop bags at first, it is the superior organisation and additional specs that will keep them coming back to Dagne Dover.
Given their names, one of the most prominent features of the Ryan and the Weston is the interior laptop sleeve, but there is so much more.
There’s the exterior pocket that’s perfect for keeping your phone or wallet almost concealed, but at arm’s reach when you need it on the subway. Then there’s the interior card slots, the key leash, and the mesh pockets that provide a spot for just about every little thing you’ll need throughout the day. Plus, each bag is water resistant so you know your precious tech will be safe (remember, scuba gear!)
Both bags have a regular handle, as well as a crossbody strap, so you can carry it whatever way you find most comfortable. While most features are the same between the models, the most noticeable difference is that the Ryan has an exterior zipper pocket, while the Weston has a slimmer, flat exterior. Both bags come in medium and large sizes. The medium’s laptop sleeve is 13.25″ inches wide, while the large’s is 14.5″ inches wide, so they can accommodate a range of laptop sizes.
Three of our team members got to test Dagne Dover’s new laptop bags. While some of us were already fans of the brand, some of us (like myself) had never tried anything from Dagne Dover before, but it’s safe to say, regardless of our prior experience, we were all impressed.
Connie Chen, Insider Picks reporter:
I wish the Dagne Dover Ryan Laptop Bag had existed while I was in college, because it would have actually held up to all the heavy study materials and the laptop I carried around campus. I liked that I could carry it multiple ways – in one hand, over the shoulder, cross-body, or over my luggage handle – and it felt sturdy and comfortable all the while. Since it features so many well-organised compartments for notebooks, smaller tech, and even my keys, it’s the only bag I need to carry if I want to bring some work home or to a cafe.
Mara Leighton, Insider Picks reporter:
Dagne Dover’s laptop bag, like much of its offerings, is smarter, leaner, and better looking than most other options. It’s spacious enough for my laptop, planner, headphones, keys, and other essentials, but compact enough to be forgettable even in a crowded subway car.
The neoprene is lightweight but sturdy, and being able to carry it like a crossbody or purse is essential. My favourite features are the key leash, lean build, and almost hidden exterior pocket for easy access to my phone or wallet. My only complaint is that I found the medium size’s laptop sleeve to be a little snug for the MacBook I use for work, but that’s ultimately not a big deal.
Remi Rosmarin, Insider Picks reporter:
I was super excited to test the large Weston Laptop Bag after hearing such great things about Dagne Dover from my coworkers. While I’m more partial to the style of backpacks and totes, this bag won me over. I was worried that, as an intern, I might look silly carrying what looks like a briefcase. In all honesty, carrying this on the subway and into the office gave me an air of confidence that only such a professional-looking bag could provide. Still, I was able to bring it to the gym without worrying that a wet locker room floor would ruin it (thanks, neoprene!)
Most importantly, this bag feels like it was designed with every one of my commuter frustrations in mind. The key leash, smartphone-sized back pocket, and multiple organizational slots keep my bag organised, making it easy to find everything and eliminating all that wasted time rummaging through a stuffed, messy bag.