Before I introduce Bartaile — a startup line of travel goods and accessories — let’s discuss the company’s namesake bird, the bar-tailed godwit. Scientists tracking the birds’ migratory path from their breeding grounds in Alaska to their winter homes in Australia and New Zealand discovered something incredible: The small birds make the 7,000-plus mile trip in just nine days — with zero stops to sleep or eat. It’s the longest nonstop flight recorded in the avian kingdom.
It’s a remarkable journey, and one that Bartaile founders Amina Belouizdad and Felicia Snyder see mirrored in the lives of women on the go. Jetsetters themselves (between them they’ve lived in 12 cities on three continents in the past six years), the friends share a passion for travel and a frustration with uncomfortable, impractical, and unappealing suitcases and bags.
When the duo was reunited at The Wharton School (they first met at McGill University), they transformed those frustrations into the Bartaile brand. Enlisting fashion pros and industrial designer Taylor Welden, their line of stylish, functional bags and accessories was born.
Their signature bag, the Journey, launches this fall. (Pre-orders are being taken now.) With classic style and functional versatility, it seamlessly transforms from a comfortable backpack into a more polished tote or messenger bag. Available in water-repellant canvas, Nappa leather, and limited-edition Timo Weiland leather and wool-silk prints (I’m personally obsessed with his Drip Stripes), the Journey’s practical interiors include a padded laptop sleeve, a micro-fleece glasses pouch, key ring, and charger compartment. And since 5 percent of every sale goes to Bartaile’s 7,000 Mile Fund, a charity that supports Teach for America, you can feel good about looking good.
Images courtesy of Bartaile.