Thin is in. For a few years now, the internet has been obsessing over slim wallets. They’re one of the few things that are comparable to the number of iPad/iPhone cases on Kickstarter. Capsule was one of these projects that were successfully funded on Kickstarter. They sent me their wallet, the “Minimalist” to review.
I actually only accept something like 20% of the products I’m asked to review. If it isn't something I would actually use, I wouldn't be able to give a fair review. The Minimalist was on the edge. While I respected the goal of a slimmer wallet, I didn’t know if the design was going to be convenient. I also thought the overall design was a tad uninspired. It’s not poorly designed, it’s just a bit... ordinary.
I would have been an idiot if I didn't review the wallet though. The amount of care and love the makers put in was immediately obvious. The wallet is offered in black, brown, blue and grey are only $50-65.
Where the Minimalist really shines is in craftsmanship and quality. The brown nappa leather and the blue saffiano leather are both top notch. I think saffiano leather works really well on simple designs like the Minimalist. This is definitely a scenario where quality of craftsmanship and materials define the product's beauty.
The inside of the wallet is nicely lined for cards to slide out more easily. Impressed by the level of quality here - particularly the edge painting on the leather.
Here is a thickness comparison with my previous wallet - something I picked up from Muji during my trip to Japan. I was immediately skeptical that I could downscale to something so compact.
This is what I normally carry. About 6 cards and some cash. Could all this possibly fit inside the wallet and still be usable?
Turns out that the Minimalist has no problem swallowing my wallet’s contents. Of course, if your wallet is like Costanza’s, this won’t work. I'm a strong believer in purposefully downsizing though - I recently moved into a studio even though I could get something larger.
Squeezing the wallet makes removing the cards fairly easy. I’d say that 5-6 cards is the maximum load for the card pocket. There’s also a slit on the front for your most frequently used card.
The cash band holds up to a dozen bills folded in half. If you’re looking into buying one, the choice of leather is crucial. My blue Minimalist is made from a significantly stiffer material than the brown one. This makes removal of cash/cards a bit more difficult but it also holds its shape better. I prefer the smell and touch of the brown leather better but its too soft for my tastes.
The cash strap does a great job of securely holding cash. If you’re paranoid, you can fold the cash once more for added safety.
The past two weeks or so with the Minimalist have been great. I had initially doubted its usability but it may be the best wallet I’ve ever owned; I haven’t touched my Muji wallet since. If it was me, I’d buy a blue Minimalist with saffiano leather. Whichever color you get though, you’ll have a much more comfortable time sitting.