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“I lived in Juarez, Mexico, and slept on the floor with my black Lab, Blue, in a $100-a-month apartment with no hot water for three years so I could start this business,” says Dave Munson about the commitment required to launch Saddleback, his brand of nearly indestructible, stylish leather goods. What began with one classic brown briefcase made by an artisan in southern Mexico grew — through a steady stream of sales from eBay (and the back of his Land Cruiser) — into a full-fledged San Antonio–based lifestyle company that produces everything from backpacks, belts and bracelets to wallets and watertight carry-ons hewn from a single hide of extra-thick full-grain leather. And like Clinton C. Filson, the late king of the indestructible canvas bag, Munson offers a 100-year guarantee on all his products. “We don’t use zippers, snaps or buttons. There’s nothing on the bag that can break,” he says, noting his leather — available in Carbon Black, Chestnut, Dark Coffee and Tobacco Brown — is “probably twice as thick as 98 percent of our competitors’.” And rather than use fabric linings, he opts for pigskin, the second-toughest hide in the world (behind kangaroo). In addition to a growing collection of iPad accessories and gadget totes, Munson, a consummate traveler, is currently working on some lighter-weight backpacks and duffels. “The biggest complaint we get from our customers with smaller frames is that the bags are too heavy. But the thicker the leather, the more beautifully it ages,” he explains. “That’s why I say that the first day you own it will be the ugliest it will ever look.”

Tickets from $39, www.saddlebackleather.com