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BUKcase creates handmade cases for Apple products. Each of their products is made-to-order by local master bookbinders in Manchester, England, who use local materials and traditional machinery. Each product comes with a unique personal ID number and a birthday.

To make its products more unique, BUKcase even offer custom engraving options. Since appearing on the television show Dragons’ Den, (the British version of Shark Tank), the company has had tremendous sales growth despite the lack of funding. We had the opportunity to review several of their products below…

BUKcase Leather Original for iPad 2/3/4:

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This case is designed to look like an old fashioned book and is made out of Spanish bonded leather. It is a black leather book lined with vinyl that comes in either Skye Blue, Pillarbox Red, or Welsh Slate Grey. On the inside is where you find the unique personal ID number.

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The iPad fits into a birch wood frame with a locking mechanism which consists of four rotating clips, though it fits pretty snugly without the use of the clips. I will admit at first I was afraid the clips were going to scratch my iPad, but that fear turned out to be unfounded. The clips ensure that the iPad is held tightly in place.

You can tell a lot about the quality of the product right away when you take it out of the packaging. It is a sturdy case and feels solid to hold. Considering the fact that the case features a birch wood frame, you can expect it to add a little weight to the iPad, but not a significant amount.

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There is a hole etched out in the back for the camera so you don’t need to remove it from the case to take photos. Attached to the back of the case is an elastic band that is used to secure the case when closed, or to prop the case up as a stand. Getting it to stand is somewhat tricky at first in that you need to find the right angle in which it is able to stand on its own weight. Once you find the angle at which it stands on its own, the stand is at the perfect angle for watching movies or making FaceTime calls. The strap on the back of the case also helps ensure that the case will close so the iPad will automatically go to sleep.

Despite the fact that the birch wood frame holding the iPad is thick, none of the buttons or ports are inaccessible. There is a cutout at the bottom to allow easy access to the Lightning connector. On the right hand side you are able to feel the mute/rotation switch and the volume rocker. At the top you are able to press the iPad’s built in sleep/wake button and can easily connect any headphones or a speaker through the audio jack.

The branding is discreetly hidden on the back, where you’ll find the BUKcase logo and “handcrafted in England” embossed.

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The BUKcase is normally $84.09, but is currently on sale for $67.19.

BUKcase Cote iPad Air Leather Sleeve:

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This sleeve for the iPad Air is made out of Italian leather and thread purchased from a local haberdashery, which speaks to BUKcases’s roots of making traditional handmade products. It is available in two different colors, “wenge” (black as shown above) with white stitching, and tan with green stitching. The iPad Air slides into the sleeve very snugly, and feels very well protected.

Just like with the BUKcase Leather Original, when you open up the sleeve, you can smell the aroma of the quality of the leather, indicating how superb and genuine this case is. This sturdy sleeve is made from one piece of leather that is folded onto itself twice, which results in the two pocket system. Though the pocket is more for style than function, I was able to fit a tiny notebook or an envelope in it. Having said that, I like the pocket because it adds to the overall bulk and creates a more protective feeling.

The BUKcase Cote iPad Air Leather Sleeve is an extremely likable product because of its simple, classic design and quality. Because the sleeve fits so well, taking the iPad in and out of the sleeve with the Smart Cover attached would be impractical at best. Even though the corner of the iPad sticks out of the sleeve, the sleeve is solid and holds the tablet tightly in place. In fact, it is part of the sleeve’s design to have the corner sticking out, because otherwise it would be extremely difficult to remove the iPad from the sleeve.

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The BUKcase Cote iPad Air Leather Sleeve is $149.68 and currently comes with a free BUKcase Cote Sleeve for your phone.

BUKcase Cote iPhone 5/5S/5C Leather Sleeve

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Very similar in design to the iPad Air sleeve, the BUKcase Cote Leather Sleeve for the iPhone is just as stunning and is made with the same skill, quality care, and technique. It is available in two colors: tan with green stitching, and wenge with white stitching.

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Like the iPad version, the iPhone sleeve sports a small pocket. This pocket functions as a bare-essential wallet that can fit a couple of credit cards inside. You can fit about four credit cards total inside the case, though you’ll have to remove your phone in order to get the cards out. I prefer sticking in three credit cards, as it leaves enough room to pull the cards out while the phone remains in the case.

The corner of the iPhone does stick out of the sleeve, but that is necessary in order to get the phone out of it. The phone fits into it very securely, and I was not afraid of it falling out at all. The phone still remained securely in place even after being shaken during my testing.

The BUKcase Cote for iPhone 5/5C/5S is $50.46.

Overall:

Even after owning and using the BUKcase products for a couple of months, I can still smell the freshness of the leather and the dampness of wood chips, which brings up fond memories. The cases still look incredible and securely hold my devices in place even after months of use.

These handmade artisan cases are available at reasonable prices, and as a bonus for our readers, using discount code 01T4V0M4T1EU at checkout will allow you to save 10% on your purchase.

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3 Responses to “Review: Traditional handmade BUKcase for iPad and iPhone beat expectations”

  1. silas681 says:

    “television show Dragons’ Den, (the British version of Shark Tank),”

    Or you could have said, shark tank, the show that copied the British show Dragons Den(which copied the Japanese show…..)

    I am In snarky Britisher mode today!

    Like

  2. Marklewood at Serenity Lodge says:

    Up to date: now available for wide range of tablets and phones, in several colors and for customers in several Countries.

    Like

  3. Matthew Lees says:

    I ordered a Leather bound iPad case from them. However, after two weeks and no sign of the case I e-mailed them to enquire when I might expect to receive it. Unfortunately, they did not respond until a second e-mail to them. They advised then that the case was ready and just needed monogramming.

    However, after a further two week and no sign of the case I e-mailed them again. As before, it took a couple of e-mails before they responded to say they were sending in the post that day. Unfortunately, it was a further 2 days before they posted it.

    When it arrived, much to my dismay, they had sent me their alternative bound case and not the leather bound case I ordered. I have e-mailed them to advise this and requested a refund but after several e-mails I there is no response from them.

    Buyer be warned, they are incredibly slow and are very reluctant to respond to any problems.

    It is a real shame, they have a good and unique product. However, getting your money seems to be well above customer service.

    Like