I don’t really drink that much, but I’ve always wanted a flask. Something about them has always appealed to me and I simply think they look cool. Maybe it’s the cowboy aesthetic, or the long lost sophisticated gentleman vibe, but either way, I’ve always wanted one. Part of the reason is that when I do drink, it’s usually whiskey, the drink most associated with the flask. Aside from a great glass, which I already have (made in Japan, of course), the ideal companion for whiskey is a solid flask. I have never owned one, so when my friend Dave aka @ruggedworkwear announced that he was starting a collaboration with @whiskeyleatherworks that included a leather wrapped flask, I was immediately interested.
The timing was perfect as I had already been looking at flasks for a few months. Pretty much all the ones that I looked at were either the wrong material, too cheaply made, or too expensive. Whisky Leatherworks offers USA-sourced food-grade 18/8 stainless steel flask coated in copper for $85, a pretty fair price. To make it better, however, their flasks are wrapped in leather that are hand sewed together with either sinew or fly line- definitely meant for durability.
The design is simple, but well thought out. I love the x stitches across the seem and the fact that there is leather placed underneath the flask as well as around it. They normally offer a selection of CXL and a natural veg tanned option, but the flask we have here is a special one. This is part of the ‘Rugged Gear’ line, a collaboration with prominent workwear instagrammer Dave aka @ruggedworkwear. The ‘Rugged Gear’ line includes belts, wallets, and this flask. What makes these items special is that they are all made with 3-4oz veg tanned leather from the Hermann Oak Tannery.
Roughout leather such as this is pretty cool for a few reasons. Firstly, Hermann Oak is known for making very good leather. Secondly, vegetable tanned roughout will patina like crazy. Third, I’ve noticed that specifically for this flask, the roughout leather makes it very easy to grip, which is probably quite useful if you are most of the way through the liquid in your flask.
With that said, the main focus here is on the patina potential. In fact, this is such a focus that Dave and Whiskey Leatherworks have teamed up for a patina contest that runs for 6 months from March 1, 2019 through September 1, 2019. The rules are simple. All you have to do is wear one of the collaboration belts or use any of the other collaboration items to develop patina, post a picture once a month on the progress, and post a final picture on September 1. The winner gets $200 and a free Whiskey Leatherworks product of their choice.
This is a pretty cool contest in my opinion. Not only is the prize quite generous, but the actual substance of the contest is unique. We have seen plenty of fade contests in the denim community and those are great, but as someone who is more partial to leather than denim, seeing a leather patina contest instead just makes me happy. Additionally, the fact that you can patina a number of different items is pretty cool as well.
I am also quite happy with this flask itself. As I said, I love how grippy the roughout leather is and I love the way it looks. The flask feels very solid and well-made and I love how beefy the sinew used for the stitching is. I could remove the flask from the leather quite easily if I chose, but thankfully, this is not something that will happen accidentally either. Other than that, there is not too much to comment on in terms of construction. The hand stitching is done with a very large thread and is well done and the leather is cleanly cut so it is clear that Whiskey Leatherworks knows how to work with leather.
Being someone who lives in the suburbs and has to drive everywhere I go, I will not be able to use this flask as much as others for alcohol. However, one great bonus about the leather wrapping is the fact that I can put hot tea into the flask so I can bring it around during a cold evening. I have already done this a couple of times and although the product was not meant for this, it has worked out quite well and the good news is that it allows me to use it more.
The leather wrapped flask is already unique enough, but the roughout leather makes it even more rugged and functional. Make sure to check out the ‘Rugged Gear’ collection HERE and join the contest!
*Full disclosure, this item was provided for review and Dave is a friend of mine. This article is largely written as an announcement for his product line and patina contest. I am not being paid or being told what to write in any way*