In this hands-on review, we’ll share our thoughts on some of Herschel’s products to help you decide if they’re worth buying.
Herschel is an extremely popular brand that’s known primarily for its bags. I tested out their Novel Duffel Bag and Chapter Toiletry Kit on a couple of trips. Here’s what I think about them.
Overall, the Herschel Novel and Chapter are good for the price. They aren’t shoddy, but they also aren’t high-end. They’re a nice middle-of-the-road option for light travel.
- Good quality for the price
- They offer a lot of colorways
- The shoulder strap on the Novel could use some more support
- The Novel is too big for men of modest height
Check out the Novel Duffel and the Chapter Dopp Kit, or read on for the full review.
Herschel Supply Co. was founded in 2009 by two brothers, Lyndon and Jamie Cormack.
The named their company “Herschel” after the small village in Saskatchewan where a few generations of their family grew up.
Our goal is to create a timeless product with fine regard for detail.From Herschel’s About page
Herschel’s retro-inspired products are widely popular. They make bags, accessories, and apparel of all kinds.
The Novel Duffel
I got the Novel in the peacoat/saddle brown colorway, and it looks great. It’s a nice, classic colorway that compliments the bag’s minimal design.
Speaking of minimal, the logo isn’t a design that I really like, but I give Herschel credit for making it small. There’s one logo on the side corner and another one on the strap. That’s minimal enough for me!
The Novel is a big bag which is good or bad depending on your needs. On a four-day trip to New York, my girlfriend and I actually shared this bag as a carry-on, and each took a personal item. The bag was totally full, but it accommodated two people for four days. It’s a big bag!
On a week-long trip to Chicago, the Novel worked great for me, but I think it’s too big to use as a weekender. Luckily, Herschel does offer a mid-volume size that’s smaller than the standard.
If you’re a man of modest height, I would definitely avoid the full-sized version. I haven’t tried the mid-volume size, but I’d imagine it to be more suited for shorter gents or anyone looking for a weekender bag.
The strap is a nice addition, though I wish it were more padded. The plastic pieces on the straps feel pretty cheap, and I don’t expect them to last a very long time. It would be nice if they were made of metal instead.
This bag also has a shoe compartment which is clutch.
Overall, the Novel is a good duffel for traveling. Just note that it’s too big for a weekend trip and probably too big for most guys to use as a gym bag.
The Chapter Dopp Kit
Like the Novel Duffel bag, The Chapter Toiletry Kit comes in a lot of colorways. I got the navy which looks great. I especially like the small brown leather accent on the zipper.
A small detail that’s interesting to note is that while the zippers do have the YKK logo on one side, the other side is actually embossed with “Herschel.” It’s a nice touch!
About the function of the Dopp kit, I have no complaints. It’s exactly what I’d expect from a Dopp kit, and it doesn’t have any stand-out features. It looks good, has plenty of room and I expect it to last a long time. For the price, it’s definitely a good toiletry bag!
Questions About Herschel
Here are the answers to some common questions about Herschel.
What’s So Special About Herschel?
There’s nothing particularly amazing about Herschel’s products, but they make good quality items for the price!
Is Herschel a Good Brand?
Yes, Herschel makes nice middle-of-the-road bags that are durable and won’t break the bank.
Is Herschel a Canadian Brand?
Yep, Herschel is based in Vancouver, British Columbia.
Where Are Herschel Products Made?
Herschel products are made in China.
My Verdict: The Quality Matches the Price
Herschel makes pretty good-quality bags that are reasonably priced. If you’re looking for something that’ll last a lifetime, I’d look elsewhere (like Saddleback Leather or Beckett Simonon).
However, if you’re looking for a decent bag to travel with and don’t want to break the bank, Herschel’s products are a good option!
Questions? Comments? Leave them below!
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