Monday, May 27, 2013

Travel Kits

A couple of years ago, I was able to spend the day at the Victoria and Albert Museum in London, and of all the many beautiful and interesting things on display there, the items that stood out most were the everyday possessions of people throughout history. At the V&A, it very quickly becomes clear how important personal care has always been to people, especially when travelling. Throughout history people have traveled with toothpicks, scissors and clippers, cuticle pushers, combs and the thankfully now out of fashion “ear spoon”, examples of which can be found in the museum in various remarkably ornate travel cases.

Modern tastes tend to run to less ornate accessories than silver and gold toothpick cases, but we still find it as important as ever to know we can take care of ourselves when we reach our destination, and most people appreciate being able to carry their personal care kit in style. The majority of modern travel kits owe something to the original “Dopp kit” created by Charles Doppelt in the early 20th century, the term colloquially came to refer to all bags in that style. Much like the safety razor’s rise to prominence in the trenches, the Dopp kit and its contemporaries became widely appreciated after being issued to GIs in the Second World War.

While the original is no longer in production, some of those World War II contemporaries are still going strong, and of those, Bosca of the USA make one of the finest travel kits around. Available in black or cognac oak-tanned French leather, the Bosca Utilikit has been in production since the 1940’s, and is a sturdily made, timelessly styled classic. Kaliandee now carries a selection of Bosca products, and with the recent sunny weather, we couldn't resist photographing the Utilikit in it’s natural environment: out of the house.

Also pictured: Edwin Jagger Sandalwood shaving soap in a travel container, Proraso’s excellent Menthol and Eucalyptus pre-shave, Merkur’s travel razor assembled next to it’s case, Taylor of Old Bond St’s travel fragrance set and aftershave cream and Simpson’s turnback travel brush screwed into it’s travel tube.

All products pictured available from and