Guest Baggage: Vintage Brady

Cartridge Bag

Discontinued model [name?] & Ariel fishing bag

Sandringham Game Bag

Another submissions to the Brady visual archives by Gus W. who purchased his first bag back in 1986. Here are his notes regarding his Brady collection which includes both fishing and shooting models as well as a more contemporary, urban shoulder bag (no longer available):

The smaller “Ariel” model is, as you know, a fishing creel with a snap in rubber liner. I bought it in 1986 when my son was born because I wanted a masculine and practical diaper bag. After serving its intended purpose flawlessly, I began using it for travel and urban adventures. I bought the second, larger Brady bag in London a year ago at The Dover Street Market to carry artwork. It is nice to see that the workmanship and quality of the leather is as good as ever with Brady. They are wonderful bags.

The [Sandringham] bag with the netting is also vintage since it has the Brady “Halesowen” tag. This heavy canvas bag has a fused rubber liner unlike the snap out liners found on today’s bags. I love the look of the netting. I want a large tote bag with that same feature to take to the farmers market!

13 thoughts on “Guest Baggage: Vintage Brady”

  1. Cyclo2000–

    I’ve heard this before from a cycling friend (it’s sort of a running quibble). But I’m not sure. I own both brands. Brady is clearly a much higher quality, better designed product. Leather, fittings and canvas on the Brady are much nicer. My Chapman bags, though nice, seem like lower cost reproductions of their Brady cousins (on one bag, there’s an unforgiveable, non-adjustable shoulder strap that makes the bag dangle and bang at same annoying place on my hip).

    I’ve also wondered who was making bags for Barbour. It may well have been Chapman or Brady. Many of the styles in their earlier catalogs are dead accurate replicas of Brady. Quality level, however, was closer to Chapman.

    I’d love to resolve this mystery so forward on any notes you have about the genealogy of these bags and their family relations..

  2. The Arial fishing bag is an exact match to the Barbour canvas Tarras bag. I just ordered one from a UK supplier who ships to N.America. However, no mention of even what country it’s made in anywhere on the bag or the packaging. The quality seems to be excellent though and somewhat cheaper at 60 pounds than other similar makes.

  3. Lesli, what size is your Brady’s Ariel bag? I am thinking about getting it in small, but not sure if my paperworks would fit in it.

  4. My bag is actually the more diminutive Norfolk style bag.

    The Brady Aerial bag measures:

    Size: 13ins x 10ins x 3.5ins (330mm x 250mm x 90mm)

    It should be fine for paper carrying as long as you don’t go legal.

  5. Somewhat late to this one but I can clear up a few issues: the predecessor company of Chapman was the Liddesdale Fishing Bag company, once owned by, yes, Barbour. Barbour then closed bag making down and sourced bags overseas. John Chapman, who worked at Liddesdale, then launched out on his own, his major client being House of Hardy, for whom Chapman made all the fishing bags until recently – they now source from China. As far as I know there is no historical relationship between Chapman and Brady. Interested in the design and quality issues as I think you will find this has changed of late. Chapman still make everything at their Carlisle workshops and use expensive materials such as rubber bonded cotton canvas, military spec cotton webbing and English brass fittings. Other brands have cut corners over the years, such as using Polyurethane bonded or “treated” fabrics. You can usually spot these because they have a slightly harsher, plasticky feel and go brittle after a while. Chapman also offer a bespoke service, which is pretty unique these days, and a much wider range of styles and colours than you will find elsewhere. As you can probably tell, I have quite a few of their bags!

  6. Anon–

    Thanks so much for this clarification regarding the resemblances between Brady, Hardy, etc. I have a few Chapman bags and though I don’t think they’re quite up to the quality level of Brady, I like them very much.

    Curious to know if you know of any sources for the top quality cotton webbing used by Chapman, etc. I’m looking for a quality source for my own bag project.

    Also, feel free to send along photos or a “guest baggage” notice regarding your own unique Chapman bag collection. I like to document as many living examples of these bags as possible (especially discontinued styles).

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