Finegrain has two incredible new iPad cases currently up for funding on Kickstarter: the Bowden and the Sheffield. Named after ancestors of the designers, these two cases blend luxe materials with precision engineering and an oddly eclectic minimalist aesthetic (think hippy blanket meets 2005′s iMac, or a MacBook Air in a handsome wood lined barrister’s office). Both cases are of the rigid, side-loading sleeve variety (leaving the iPad naked during use), and they both accommodate the iPad 2 or the new iPad, either with or without a Smart Cover. The creative team behind these geekgasm-worthy cases, Levi and Eric, are looking to raise a total of $20,000 by May 23.
For the refined gadget geek on the go, a Finegrain case is an absolute must have, whether you sport thick rimmed glasses, plaid shirt and skinny jeans, or a three piece suit. With pledge levels starting at $1 and maxing out at $600, there are plenty of options for Kickstarters to chip in. If you want one of the cases, you can try for one of the limited-alotment Sheffields at the $100 level or the Bowden at $120. If those limited levels fill up, you can still nab a case at the $150 (Sheffield) or $170 (Bowden) level. If you lack the budget to make that big a contribution, there are several lower giving levels; each giving level from $15 and above feature awesome rewards including a microfiber cleaning cloth with stunning Finegrain custom artwork or one of the team’s other minimalist cases, the Palmer (a traditional top-loading iPad sleeve made out of a striking leather).
The Bowden case exists, aesthetically-speaking, somewhere between steampunk and Brooklynite hipster. Combining a hand finished walnut or cherry hardwood spine, black or brown leather flap, and aluminum body resembling the MacBook Pro and Air finishes, this case is guaranteed to draw attention. Featuring a felt-lined interior that can wipe away dirt or fingerprints from your iPad’s screen, the case also comes with a magnetic-closure leather flap that runs the full length of the case’s front to hold your iPad securely in place. For iPads with a Smart Cover, you will need to straddle the Smart Cover over the case (iPad inside the Bowden, Smart Cover on the outside), but the leather flap still covers the full front of the case, and therefore the Smart Cover as well.
While the Bowden is the extroverted fashionista, the Sheffield is the introverted but handsome workhorse. Users with Smart Covers will still need to keep that cover resting outside the Sheffield case, but instead of a leather flap holding the iPad in place, the Sheffield has a grey wool felt exterior flap. Unlike its leather counterpart on the Bowden, the Sheffield’s flap can be flipped backwards and used as a stand to hold your iPad for typing (the angle appears to be roughly the same as the incline offered by the Smart Cover).
The Sheffield dispenses with aluminum in favor of a case of milled polycarbonate (the same white plastic iMacs and MacBooks were previously clad in), but the hardwood band around the case’s spine is made of the same walnut or cherry. The glossy finish of the Sheffield’s polycarbonate case also doubles as a dry erase board for those who need to take notes, sketch, or just want to scribble a quick memo (any intrepid users want to find out if their vintage iMac/Mac Mini/MacBook/iBook can be used in the same way? Sound off in the comments if you dispense with sticky notes in favor of writing directly on your Mac!).
Be sure to head over to Finegrain’s Kickstarter page. As they say, even a donation of $1 helps, and for such an amazing product, it should not be difficult to find more than a spare dollar to kickstart this project!