When you start looking for a case it can seem that there are more choices than there are iPad owners. There is an ocean of options: hard, soft, ultra-protection, ultra-stylish, colorful, classy, low-cost, high-dollar. Well, you get the idea.
It helps to narrow the search by defining your criteria. For instance, right now I'm looking for a case that offers some protection but still makes it easy to remove the iPad for use, say when sitting in a coffeehouse. It must look at least as good as a naked iPad, and have some personality. Since I already own Apple's basic iPad case, this time I'm leaning more towards form over function.
Who wants another "me-too" case? It's time for something awesome, something that makes a statement. After looking around, here is a selection of unique cases with "personality" written all over them.
Unlike so many good-looking cases in the sub-$100 range, the BookBook iPad case is also functional. It's a hard case with impact protection and it folds back to make a stand, but it's gorgeous and vintage and "feels" like a book. If you're a booklover, then this is the kind of case you will want to carry around every day. The BookBook iPad case costs about $70.
A Bamboo iPad Case is modern and elegant. I love the contrast of encasing a high-tech device in a natural material. There are several for sale on Amazon and although several of the cases look the same, the prices can vary wildly from as low as $30 up to $130. The Menotek Apple iPad Bamboo iPad Case is currently the best value at $29.99. However, the Bamboo Case and Stand for iPad by Dragon Moss distinguishes itself as the only unibody case and claims of less interference with your Wi-Fi signal. Dragon Moss's case also has a "rustic" design that is a little more square, a little less sculpted and, overall, feels more organic than the others.
Of all the barely-there "case" designs, ZAGG has the most device-hugging style. Leather Skins are exactly that -- an iPad skin made from handcrafted, genuine leather. As long as protection isn't your main goal, the result is the most eye-catching way to customize your iPad. The ZAGG Leather Skins, which come in several shades with various embellishments, are also the least expensive way to wrap your iPad in the luxury of leather.
Vaja's Crystal 3 is beautiful, but unique enough that you're unlikely to see a stranger carrying "your" case on the subway. Awesome white leather with flourishes printed directly onto the case and tastefully enhanced with Swarovski crystals, what really makes the Vaja case stand out is that it's the only case I've seen with a detachable front cover. Put the cover on for safe transport, then clip it snugly to the back for a slim design that easy to hold during use. I love the Crystal 3 ($360) just like it is, but Vaja offers the same functional design in about half a dozen different looks from sporty to professional. The Special Edition Mamut Suela Brown Leather Case is pretty sweet too, $300.
"Style" is just another way to express yourself. If your personality is more kick-back than classy, these unique cases have a lot to say.
The iLuv Casual Fabric Case is cute and sporty. The color combinations are fun and, like the name suggests, the style is casual so it would make a nice everyday case if you don't use your iPad in the office. It's padded and lined so you can expect your iPad to be safe from most bumps and scratches, just don't go dropping it from any tall buildings. Buy the iLuv Casual Fabic Case from the AppCraver Accessories store and save about $10 off the manufacturer's suggested retail.
The famous handmade Bacon Case is available for the iPad and ready to grill. Etsy seller Antjes makes interesting carriers for just about any gadget worth having. In addition to the bacon sleeve and the cheese case, you will also find a nice selection of non-food sleeves including some truly stunning embossed leather designs. The Bacon Case costs around $59.
Quirky and not for the faint of heart, the Monster iPad Sleeve is a handmade creation whiped up by Etsy seller yummypocket. The felt sleeves come in a variety of colors, and you can probably even request a custom color since they're all made to order. If you find the monsters too "scary," the Moustache sleeve is a tamer version with a similar kitsch factor. The Monster and Moustache iPad sleeves cost about $30.
Speck's Fitted Case for iPad combines the protection of a hardcase with the personality of textiles. It's a simple idea that works well, looks smart and gives you the best of both worlds. The two-piece, fabric-backed iPad cases come in Houndstooth, Tartan or Classic Plaid for about $50.
Like shoes, you can never have too many cases for your technology and in a perfect world I would have an iPad case for every day of the year. What does your iPad case say about you? Does it express your unique style?