The Best iPad Cases Apple Isn’t Officially Making

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Whenever Apple releases a new product, you can always find slick cases and carriers from companies like Belkin and InCase that come in your choice of neoprene or silicone and a host of predictable colors and patterns.  While silicone and neoprene are great for implants and scuba diving, I usually turn to Etsy to see what more design-oriented and textile-friendly cases its crowd of crafters have whipped up.  After all, if you’ve just dropped hundreds on an iPad, why throw a perfunctory sleeve over it when you can dress it in fabulously tactile materials like mottled leather, felted wool, and linen?

Here are my top picks for the discerning iPad user:

1. The Portel by portel, $39

Portel’s iPad case has that slightly steampunk, retro-modern aesthetic I can never find when looking for a great pair of shoes.  Its blend of grey felt, brass grommets, and dark leather create a beautiful, simple casing for your iPad that quietly announces “I’m from the future, and this is how we roll.”  Extra points for the portel’s presentation.

2. Felt iPad sleeve by byrdandbelle, $48

byrdandbelle’s wool felt sleeve with leather detailing is a must-have case for lovers of mid-century modern aesthetics.  It’ll go perfect with Herman Miller Eames chairs, espresso, and reclaimed wood floors.

3. Alice in Wonderland iPad sleeve by Sakizome, $20

Sakizome’s affordable Alice in Wonderland iPad case is too cute for words.  This Japanese-style patterned sleeve features an adorable vintage Alice in Wonderland montage that makes me want to pinch it.

4. SKIN iPad sleeve by FERUTOBags, $50

The SKIN by FERUTOBags wins serious points for sheer volume of leather.  If Hobbits carried iPads, this is the case they’d use on their journey to Mordor–it’s both sleek, sturdy and yet reminds me of magical mottled-leather-sewing elves.  That might just be me, though.

5. Padded linen iPad sleeve by JiuJiu, $18.99

Synthetic materials be damned–I’m a sucker for anything linen.  It’s just so breathable!  Your iPad will look very sophisticated in this naturally textured, padded linen case.  Plus when you bust out your all-linen summer suit, you’ll look incredibly…uh coordinated.

6. The iMaxi by hiphandmaids, $35

The iMaxi is perfect for those iPad owners who spent months mocking the iPad’s name, but then went ahead and bought one on release day anyways.  It’s a giant maxipad-shaped case, complete with wings (for extra protection)!  Extra points to the hiphandmaids for bringing physical form to a pun.

7. Little Red Riding Hood iPad case by Thitaree, $28.49

Did I mention that I’m a sucker for adorbzable fabrics and patterns?  Check out the pattern on this Little Red Riding Hood linen iPad sleeve.  CAN’T STOP THE CUTENESS!!!

8. Bacon and Egg iPad case by Antjes, ask for pricing*

Any iPad case involving bacon wins my vote.  This felted-wool case turns your cold, futuristic tablet into an inviting breakfast of bacon and eggs.  Plus, you can store your headphones/accessories in the front egg-pouch!  If you’re on the fence about buying an iPad, an excuse to buy this case should be reason enough.

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