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Entries in cases (6)

8 Great Etsy Finds For Your iPad

Every now and then we like to pass the time by doing a search on Etsy for iPad accessories. Try this yourself and you'll find a plethora of handmade creative solutions both for sitting your iPad on your desk and for cosseting it when you're more mobile.

So if you are looking for a special and unique gift for the iPad addict in your life (yes, you can include yourself, we do), then here are a few of the many handcrafted accessories that caught our attention recently. 

1 - Jabba the Hut Oak iPad Dock

This was our favourite to be honest, a one of a kind Star Wars figurine welded to a piece of solid wood to enhance any geek's desk. We love it, so be quick and grab it now!

Jabba iPad Dock

Jabba iPad dock back

 

2 - iPad Acoustic Dock in Maple

We liked this dock because as well as being clean and simple, it acts as a naturally amplified speaker for your iPad's audio - no plug-in, power sapping, accessories needed. There's also a smaller version available for your iPhone. Very nice.

IPad acoustic dock

 

3 - Retro TV iPad Dock

We happen to know that we are not the only Etsy browsing iPad lovers to spot this one recently, but we didn't want you to miss this one. It doesn't look terribly sturdy if we're honest, but the wooden retro design wins our hearts and this is often the duty our iPad performs when it is sat on our desks while we work.

TV iPad dock

 

4 - Leather Messenger Bag

We could have picked any of the Copper River bags and cases to recommend. They all feature the thickest leather and chunkiest stitching we have ever seen, backed up by a 100 year warranty. These things are built to last and be loved by generations.

We chose this one as it is specifically for iPad sized devices., but would be more than happy with any of the range, if anyone is reading this and fancies buying us something nice. Please...

Leather messenger bag

 

5 - Vindicated Vinyl iPad Case - Sgt. Pepper's

With cases made out of recovered vinyl records and album covers, brindakaydesign makes some of the most unique cases we have seen. It will cost you, but if you want something really special for the music lover in your life or just someone who loves the nostalgia, you can't do much better than one of these cases (she does bags, trays and belt buckles too).

A fleece lined internal leather pocket holds your iPad when mobile and there is also a stand arrangement built in (see the page for more photos):

SgtPepper iPad case

 

6 - iPad Messenger Satchel - Made by Grandad

We chose this one because it is actually something we would seriously consider ordering (as with the next pick). We have been on an endless search for a camera bag that doesn't look like a camera bag, and something that can keep our iPad safe too when out and about or on holiday as carry-on bag.

IPad messenger bag

IPad Messenger bag open

This bag from UK based Etsy seller MadeByGrandad may be just the solution we have been looking for. With its inside padded and zippered iPad pocket, a number of iPhone and other accessory pockets, and central space big enough for a small DSLR in a padded wrap, this seems to fit the bill perfectly. If only it came in black, oh wait...

 

7 - iPad 2 Padded Case

These 100% wool made iPad cases from France look top notch quality, with three layers of protection, offering good internal padding too. We liked the range of colours available, the material used and attention to detail plus the external zippered pocket for cables, iPhone, etc.

IPad 2 cases

 

8 - Wolf iPad Felt Sleeve

This sleeve caught our eye because we thought it was weird, as well as fairly unique. There is an owl design too which also has scary eyes, plus a not so scary penguin or elephant for the more playful gift.

Designed to fit an iPad with a Smart Cover attached, these 100% wool felt sleeves also include a strap if required so you can use it as a messenger bag.

Wolf iPad sleevel

 

What have you found?

There are so many different bags, cases and docks available on Etsy, hand made by people all around the world, that it was quite difficult for us to select just these few to show you and we wish we had time and space to show all of them.

But what about you? Have you got any creative accessory finds for your iPad, or do you fancy one of ours? Let us know in the comments.

Power User iPad Cases

We haven't mentioned iPad cases for a while here at iPad Creative, but two have popped up on our radar today that have something in common, Protection and Power.

We are talking about Kensington's PowerBack and IvySkin's SmartCase.

Kensington PowerBack

Kensington's not so pretty PowerBack is very functional but has some interesting features, most notably a 5 hour battery pack and integrated Kickstand for road warriors and travellers who need comfortable viewing angles and extra long battery life.

Here are the main features from Kensington's website:

  • Battery fuel gauge LED
  • Micro USB charge and sync port lets you charge and sync without removing the PowerBack(TM)
  • Built-in speaker deflectors for clear, crisp sound
  • 3-position steel kickstand holds your iPad handsfree in typing, portrait or landscape modes
  • Built-in 4400mAh battery provides up to 5 extra hours of power for app use, web surfing, movie watching and more
  • Soft touch finish case protects your iPad from bumps and bruises 

27302_w600_h600.jpgYou may have noticed that kickstand works in Portrait and Landscape modes which is useful as some stands only work effectively in one or the other orientation, although it remains to be seen how sturdy the iPad is in Portrait mode with the stand engaged.

To prevent having to remove the PowerBack to dock your iPad, Kensington have gone with a micro USB port which is an unusual but useful feature, although it might mean another cable to carry and potentially lose.

Remaining battery power is indicated by some nice blue LEDs and the case seems to offer quite a bit of protection but strangely leaves the top (in Portrait orientation) of the iPad exposed around the edges.  Presumably this is for accessing the hardware buttons but it seems odd that such a substantial case in other areas leaves your iPad open to knocks and scratching at one end.

Do check out the link if you want to know more about the PowerBack but if you like it you will have to part with a whopping $129.99 (~£84).

 

IvySkin SmartCase

     

The new SmartCase from IvySkin is big on Protection for your iPad with a 4 layer design (based on their popular Quattro T-4 iPhone case) with Xylo Glass Technology providing screen protection and Touch-Thru design. IvySkin guarantee that you will be able to use the touch screen without any noticeable difference through this case.

The Touch-Thru glass is marketed as 'Drop-proof', though we would like to test that out in a real world 'Gadget Show' style, or just lend the SmartCase to Phil for the weekend and let nature take its course, for a drop test will certainly happen that way.

The Power comes from a battery pack on the back of the case (operated via an on/off switch) which also has an integrated kickstand, this one featuring not 3 positions, as in the Kensington case, but 12 clickable viewing positions. However, this battery pack can be removed for when you don't need the extra battery life or bulk on your iPad.

We thought this was a nice feature, and because the SmartCase is based on the Quattro T-5 frame you can insert a back piece to continue protecting your iPad fully when the battery is not attached.

The SmartCase also offers all round complete coverage of your iPad so nothing will be scratching up your expensive gadget. Like the Kensington PowerBack you can leave the case on when syncing the iPad by using the supplied USB cable.

This kind of protection and power will still cost you though, the SmartCase is $99.99 (~£64) on Pre-Order at the moment.

So there you have it, two new Power and Protection cases for those serious about running their iPads for long periods of time whilst using them (mostly) protected and free-standing.

If you get your hands on either of these cases, or if you hear about some good alternatives, please let us know in the comments below. 

This Will Make You Hungry

We love things wrapped in bacon: sausages, chicken, turkey, vegetables, oysters, iPads... 

Yep, you can now declare your love for all things Bacon and protect your precious iPad at the same time.  You may have seen this one around the Web, but we wanted to make sure you knew about it!

This one pegs the crazy meter as far as iPad cases go, but we are seriously tempted, even at a whopping $59 (£38).

Check out Etsy seller Antjes page to find out more. 

Copycat Cases?

A couple of days ago we mentioned the Keycase iPad Folio which has an integrated Bluetooth keyboard and basically turns your iPad into a mobile workstation. Yesterday quality iPad case maker Sena announced a very similiar product. Sena is calling theirs the Keyboard Folio Case.

Here are both cases:

ipad-keyboard-case-2_1.jpg

Keycase iPad Folio (above)

 

black.jpg

Sena Keyboard Folio Case (above)

Quality and Similarities

As you would expect from Sena, their case seems to include superior build quality and craftmanship, the materials used by Sena look a lot nicer. If you look at the photos, Sena's case seems to have the iPad set back further from the keyboard and a different closing mechnism for the case.

Upon examining the specs for both cases though they are virtually the same though. In the screen captures below of the integrated keyboard there are slight differences in button layout/functions, but both are made from soft silicone and claim that they are "spill-proof".

keycase keyboard.jpg

Keycase iPad Folio (above)

Sena keyboard.png

Sena Keyboard Folio Case (above)

 

Sena are only taking pre-orders at the moment, with shipping dated for 7th October. Their case will cost you $129 (~£84) if you order now (normally $149), whilst the UK distributor for the Keycase version is showing that they are out of stock, with more arriving soon. The price of their version is £59.95 (~$92).

We are not seriously claiming that anyone is copying anyone else, but you cannot deny the similarities in design and keyboard layout between these two recently announced cases.

Any thoughts on which one you would go for?

iPad Case Roundup - The other ones

In this the final instalment of our iPad case roundup we take a look at those cases which did not fit any of the other categories or that we felt we could not include in the previous posts. So far we have looked at Portfolio style cases, leave-on Skin or slim cases, slip cases/sleeves and more spacious Bags or Carry Cases.

Today's cases are more for fun really, although we would like a few of them for real. There are a few oddities, including a Do-it-yourself option for those on a really tight budget.

So we will kick off this final part of the series with:

Substrata iPad Box

FPWoodenboxhingelid.jpg

It might seem a bit strange to want to wrap natural wood around a chunk of silicone and glass from Apple, but we like the idea a lot.  And these cases look gorgeous.

If you have seen Substrata's wooden iPhone cases, you will know what to expect from this innovative custom woodworking shop from the Portland, Oregon area.  The iPad cases are in prototype still, but the release date is slated for June, so surely not long to wait now. There are two models, the Sliding lid model and the Hinged lid model, the one we are looking at is the hinged lid (Box) case, as it seems to offer more protection and also has a stand action by folding back the front cover.

We like the curve of the wood on the bottom lip that gives the case when closed a lovely, smooth, tablet shape, that should slip nicely into your laptop or carry bag.  You can sign up to receive news on the iPad case releases from Substrata on their site and you can also view a complete gallery of the prototype wooden cases here.

Book for iPad

Spot the iPad case in this picture

bookledge1a.jpg

Yep, it is the grey one in the middle that says simply 'Book' on the spine, but it is nicely camouflaged don't you think? Handmade by one guy in a studio in Minnesota, these 100% wool felt lined cases are made to look like an ordinary book from the outside.  We like these a lot too.

book725.jpg

The linen used on the cover provides an authentic book like appearance and the banding at the top of the spine, along with the realistic looking pages around the edge add to the authenticity of the camouflaging.  The case combines the aforementioned felt sleeve internally with hardback casing to offer a good deal of everyday protection for your precious iPad.

The price tag is $89 and you can get the spine printed with custom text for an extra $5.  Whilst not a bargain, the 'Book' is very unique and lovingly handmade with the best of materials.  For a quality product that not everyone will have, we could go for this case.

Do-it-yourself iPad Book Case

There are quite a few DIY iPad case projects around the web, some of them actually quite good and others, not so!  The idea of making your own iPad case appeals to us though, partly because of the challenge, but partly to save money if we're honest.  Having recently spent hundreds of pounds on your iPad you are probably quite keen to save a few pennies on your accessories.

If you cannot afford the 'Book' case mentioned above, you can create something like it yourself with quite a bit of time and a certain amount of effort.

This project does require hacking a big hole out of an existing paper book, which feels a bit wrong to be honest. We have trouble throwing any book away still, but if you take the writer's suggestion and get a cheap, secondhand book that someone else was going to throw away anyway, then perhaps it is permissible.

We like this DIY project for the stealth aspect and because it is a fun and unique approach. The video below is from Ben, the creator of this project and how-to article, have a look and if you try it let us know how it goes by commenting below.

We hope you have enjoyed our series of posts on some of the cases you can get for your iPad. Whatever you use to protect and carry your iPad we would love to hear from you about your experiences and any recommendations you have for our readers, just leave us a comment below.

Just in case you missed them, here are the other posts in this iPad Case Roundup series:

iPad Portfolio Style Cases

iPad Skins and Shields

iPad Slip Cases and Pouches

iPad Bags (to carry more of your stuff)

iPad Cases Roundup - iPad Bags

So far in this roundup series we have looked at cases that deal with your iPad, and your iPad alone, whether that be Portfolio style, a leave-on Skin or slim case, or even a slip case or sleeve.  Today we are going to consider cases which can carry your iPad along with all the kit that goes with it, and by this we mean the charger, connection cable, VGA cable, (your own) headphones or anything else you want to take along as well.

Even before the iPad was on everyone's radar, there were already a lot of bags around that could carry a netbook or other device with ~10" screens and, depending on your needs, you may find one of these perfectly suitable, but we have tried to concentrate our search on bags created specifically for the iPad.

So here we go, they are not all the same type of thing, but these are the top three carry bags that have caught our attention recently:

Cocoon Messenger Sling

This $29.99 (£21) bag from Cocoon is a ballistic nylon sling bag with the usual outside pocket and carry strap, but which has some interesting features. First, it includes an external pocket with a clear plastic section for your iPhone, iPod or other device which allows you to see the device's screen, but importantly even allows you to use the touchscreen without taking the device out of the pocket. This is really useful for operating the iPod controls without taking it out of the bag or, for example, taking a call on your iPhone and using the screen without having to fumble around in your bag for your phone.

Another unique feature is Cocoon's patented design for keeping your cables, connectors, and even other devices organised inside the case. If you haven't seen it before, this is the description from Cocoon's website:

  • GRID-IT!™ organization system – a rubberized woven elastic object retention system for gadget organization
  • Ideal for organizing MacBook accessories, iPod, iPhone, BlackBerry and other digital devices
  • Versatile Organization
  • Endless configurations
  • Designed to hold items firmly in place
  • Back of GRID-IT!™ doubles as a mouse pad

The Grid-it is a bit odd to look at first of all but when you see it in action it makes sense, so we have found this little review video on YouTube from supersonik90 who has lots of reviews on her YouTube channel, check it out:

 

Sena Collega

Sena case crocored.jpgWe like to recommend things sometimes that are a little less run-of-the-mill and, if you can bear the leather, the Collega can be used with handles like a mini-briefcase, or with the handles retracted like a 'clutch' bag.

We think that in Black and used with handles the case looks quite business-like, but Sena also supply the Collega in a Red Croc version too (pictured) which may appeal to a different type of user.

Looking very modern in styling, the Collega includes an outside snap-shut pocket which can carry your cables, charger, headphones, etc. and a very sturdy looking zipper around the main compartment.

Internally the Collega has a micro velvet lining for the main compartment which also includes a good dose of padding to protect your iPad in transit. We know it will not appeal to everyone, but if you fancy a more detailed look at the Collega have a look at Sena's site here

Loopbag Transit

Loopbag_12_laptop_case_cb0002_4-tm.jpgLoopbag_12_laptop_case_cb0002_6-tm.jpgOk, this one does say 'iPad' in its official title, but it does also say that it will fit all laptops up to 12.1 inch, so we cannot honestly say that it was made only for the iPad. What this case does have is an internal pocket to coset your iPad in 10mm thick padding, along with a lot of extra room to carry more of your stuff than the other two bags above.

It has a double zip design that allows you quick access to just the iPad pocket, or you can unzip both and completely open up the bag to have total access to the contents. The internal lining comes in a choice of contrasting Green, Coffee or Azure, depending on your model choice, and if you have ever tried to find a black cable inside of a black lined bag in a dimly lit room, then you will know how useful that can be!

When it comes to getting around with the Transit case, you have the option of using a shoulder strap or the carrying handle on the top. The material used in the construction of the outer case is waterproof, adding a bit of all-weather protection for your iPad and accessories.

Overall we think this is a nice looking bag, with enough storage space in addition to your iPad to satisfy most users wanting to take a number of additional components with them to work or on day trips. You can check the website for more pictures and press reviews too.

As always, we found it difficult to narrow this roundup down to just three bags, so if you have any experience with another bag, or even one of these three, and want to let us know, please leave your comment below.

Don't miss the other posts in this iPad Case Roundup series:

iPad Portfolio Style Cases

iPad Skins and Shields

iPad Slip Cases and Pouches

iPad Wooden case, Book style case and a DIY book option