From the Archive… Around the World in Smythson Style

Quintessentially quirky or indispensably informative, Smythson has been creating an array of travel products for the discerning customer since opening our doors in 1887. From the days of the Empire and the great tours of Europe at the turn of the century, Smythson has offered travellers the best in luxury and practicality combined.

Early archive catalogues illustrate a strong emphasis on novelty and innovation in our travel goods range with everything from maps and foot rests for the automobile to portable barometers, compasses and reliable damp protectors for travel and tourists.

Quickly developing the range, Frank Smythson introduced the Monitor Bag in 1905. It was designed specifically for travel and advertised as ‘the most convenient of all bags for the carriage of for travelling’.

The iconic Featherweight diary of 1908 added further to Smythson’s leadership on all things travel by providing indispensible information on world travel and currency. Customers were told:

A passport is necessary for Austria, Egypt, Greece, Portugal, Russia and Turkey, and is occasionally demanded in Germany and Spain. Travellers intending to visit Russia are advised to have their passport visé in England before starting.

Motor mascots, travel cushions or luggage cases… those wishing to travel in style could always find a product to suit them at Smythson. During both world wars, products were designed and adapted to suit the changing world, with portable options of Smythson classics being offered. The Roxboro’ Writing Attaché and the En Route Writing Pad were perfect examples of Smythson’s innovative thinking and they were quickly followed by a selection of small leather goods all with the modern traveller in mind.

Smythson continue to produce exquisitely designed, durable leather travel goods today providing the ultimate in stylish organisation in transit. The Smythson Passport Cover, in particular, has become a must-have item for regular travellers, and the Slim Travel Wallet, introduced in the mid-1990s, was designed to make the process of checking in and boarding as hassle free as possible. The fact that as well as being practical and durable our travel products are also offered in covetable colours and a variety of leather finishes makes them unequivocally Smythson.


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