Recently, the OR team arrived at LaGuardia airport to catch a flight for a quick thirty-six hour trip. Although we both carried the same indispensable handbag that accompanies us everywhere, one of us easily wheeled a hard-sided Tumi rollerboard, while the other had slung a gorgeous leather weekender that she’d found in a Moroccan souk over her shoulder. The latter was arguably more chic and personal, but what the former lacked in style, it made up in utility.
As we waited for our slightly delayed flight, we wondered aloud about the disparity between our packing. Where could we find luggage that was not only functional and attractive, but also carried with it a legacy and a story?
Well, seek and ye shall find.
Only weeks later, we stumbled upon Daphne Markcrow’s brainchild, Oughton Limited, a luggage and accessories brand that is exactly what one would expect to find if durable construction and utilitarian design were crossed with Italian craftsmanship and a healthy dose of the equestrian aesthetic. Quite literally embodying the OR ethos of “50% glamour, 50% grit,” Oughton Limited was born out of the need for user-friendly tack storage options at horse shows and clinics (a.k.a. tack trunks that didn’t require two muscled grooms to transport).
Using waxed canvas, tack-inspired leather, and the familiar square brass hardware of horse halters, Markcrow designed a “tack trunk” in rolling bag form for herself, and was overwhelmed by the response from other riders who desired a way to haul their own essentials without the bulk of the traditional wooden crate. However, when her Rolling Tacktrunk Bag officially hit the market, it quickly became apparent that equestrians weren’t the only ones hungering for a sturdy yet attractive option for travel. Shortly thereafter, Markcrow began to create similar designs in multiple sizes for wanderlusters of all types.
Like your favorite French saddle, Oughton Limited products only get better with wear. They are beautiful, but not precious. Designed for durability, with classic lines and the timeless inspiration of the equestrian lifestyle, today’s purchase is meant to be tomorrow’s heirloom. Markcrow creates items to be passed to future generations who she hopes “will wear the patina of their ancestor’s travels with pride.” And just like that, the divergence between style and utility is overcome — we’ve found ourselves a bag that can do both.
But it gets even better. Twenty percent of all retail sales before the holidays will be donated to EQUUS Foundation, the only national charity in the U.S. that is 100% dedicated to horses. It only supports fully transparent and publicly accountable organizations, so rest assured that donations won’t be subject to any funny business.