DIY Skooba Skin Notebook Sleeve Review

by Reads (14,858)

by Sarah Meyer

At the beginning of August, RoadWired announced it was changing its name to Skooba Design.  Along with this announcement, the "new" Skooba Design announced a few new products.

One of these all new products is the DIY Skooba Skin, a spin on the traditional Skooba Skin notebook sleeve.  DIY stands for "Design it Yourself" and the sleeve is made out of blank canvas. 

I decided to check out the DIY Skooba Skin but I warn you … I am not artistic.

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TheSkooba Skin MicroSpecifications

  • Dimensions: 13.5"L x 9"H x 2.5"W
  • Switches from a sleeve to a tote
  • Choose from 32 design combinations

Design and Aesthetics

The Skooba Skin comes in multiple sizes, fabrics, and color combinations.  There are 32 combinations to be exact, or that’s at least what Skooba Design claims.  They list on the website four different sizes of the Skooba Skin but there are only eight fabric and color combinations for each size.  I would call that eight design choices in four sizes. I received the Micro, the smallest of the four sizes, which is made for a 12.1" laptop but can hold some 13.3” laptops. (For example: it held a Toshiba Tecra M8 but was too small for a Sony Vaio CR.)

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As previously mentioned, the DIY features a blank canvas outside and a red interior lining.  The blank canvas is an off white color and the red lining conceals plenty of padding for the notebook.

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The Skooba Skin has handles so it can be used as a tote or a sleeve.  The handles stay in place with black Velcro.

Using the bag

The Skooba Skin claims to be a tote or a sleeve but it’s really only functional as a sleeve.  Don’t get me wrong, the handles fold out like a purse so technically the Skooba Skin can be "toted" around but I can’t see anyone really using it this way. 

As a sleeve it works great.  The Skin has about a 1/2" of padding all around the laptop.  It’s not too thick, so it will fit in most bags but gives the user an added sense of protection.

I’m a Cincinnati Bengals fan but I didn’t have a orange sharpie. (view large image)

Decorating the bag was the hardest part for me because I’m not creative.  I was scared I would ruin the blank canvas.  In the end, I decided to trace a bengal on the back and color it in with a Sharpie and some paint pens.  It was kind of fun and for people who actually like designing, this would be a great sleeve. 


I liked the Skooba Skin because of the endless design choices. You can truly have a one-of-a-kind notebook sleeve. It was well padded and less expensive than other similar products. (Example: Tom Bihn’s brain cell is $50). I wouldn’t use the skin as a tote, but that’s me. Overall, I would recommend the Skooba Skin for those of you who want a unique, well-made product.


  • Limitless design choices
  • Not expensive
  • Multiple sizes fit most laptops


  • The "tote" is more like a purse

Pricing and Availability

The DIY Skooba Skin Micro and all the other Skooba Skins can be purchased via the Skooba Design website, or through a registered dealer. Skooba Skins start at $27.95 (The Micro).



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