It usually isn’t long after the arrival of a new gadget that accessories start to show up. Like many other gadgets, the Amazon Kindle comes with a basic cover to protect it straight out of the box, leaving the creation of more elaborate and fashionable cases to third parties. Recently, Waterfield Designs became one of the first companies to introduce cases for the Kindle, in three different designs.
The simplest of the three is the Slip Case for the Kindle. The Slip Case is a simple sleeve, open at one end, which fits snugly around the Kindle. The lining is a soft fabric that feels a lot like a microfiber cloth, and a plastic sheet is sewn into one side of it to provide extra protection for the screen.
As the Kindle is not equally thick on both sides, this case is also slightly larger along one edge than on the other. You could easily store the Kindle in a more generic sleeve, but one side or the other would not fit snugly. With this case, that isn’t a problem; the Kindle fits perfectly if you slide it in bottom-first with the screen facing the protective plastic sheet.
The outside of the Slip Case is a water-resistant woven material (I think it’s nylon, but it feels softer than typical case fabric), available in blue, black, brown, green (shown in the pictures here), red, or silver. The only exterior feature of this case is a tab at the bottom which can be used as a pen loop or to grasp the case while pulling the Kindle out the other end. The Slip Case for the Kindle is $27 if you buy directly from Waterfield.
Moving up in size and complexity, the next case in the line is the SleeveCase for the Kindle. The SleeveCase is slightly larger than the Slip Case, and has a side flap opening with a velcro closure. Its lining is 4mm neoprene with a plastic protective sheet in its front side. Its interior dimensions are a bit larger than the Slip Case, so the Kindle fits comfortably regardless of which edge you put in first (which will probably depend on whether you are right- or left-handed). The back of the SleeveCase has an open-topped pocket across its entire length. While it’s a bit compact to fit in an AC adapter or other large accessories, it’s just right for a pair of earbuds, USB cable, or small book light.
The outer fabric of the SleeveCase is black ballistic nylon, and the bottom edge is decorated with a gray and black checkerboard pattern. Like the Slip Case, it has a loop on the bottom edge that can be used for leverage when removing the Kindle or for a pen.
An optional shoulder strap for the SleeveCase is available, as is a larger version of the SleeveCase which accommodates the Kindle in its original cover. The SleeveCase for the Kindle is $39 direct from Waterfield, plus $5 if you want the matching shoulder strap.
Finally, we come to the Travel Case for the Kindle. It’s designed to carry a Kindle with a bunch of accessories, and is edging close to “gear bag” size. Externally, the Travel Case is rectangular, made of the same water-resistant material as the Slip Case, with nubbly rubber sides and bottom and a zipper closure on the top edge. Inside, it has one large main compartment with three fabric pockets sewn into the sides.
The largest inner pocket takes up 2/3 of the width of the case, and is meant to hold the Kindle. (It will also hold the Kindle in a Slip Case, but not in the original cover.) Next to that are two smaller pockets for accessories. These are stacked so that the upper one is on one side of the case and the lower one is on the other side, so that when you open the compartment you can easily get to both pockets. On the front of the case, another pocket zips open; inside this pocket are two mesh pouches to put smaller accessories in. A tab in one of the top corners and a sewn-in strap on the other allow connection of an optional shoulder strap.
The Travel Case for the Kindle is $49 direct from Waterfield, and is available in the same six colors as the Slip Case.
All three of these cases are, as is usual for Waterfield products, well constructed and fit the Kindle quite nicely. Which one is “best” depends on what you want to do with your Kindle. The Slip Case is ideal if you want to put the Kindle into a bigger gear bag or purse without taking up more space than is absolutely necessary, while the SleeveCase could fill that role but is also suitable for carrying around separately. The Travel Case is more specialized — I can’t imagine anyone carrying their Kindle around in it on a day-to-day basis, but it is the perfect size to hold the Kindle together with all of the accessories you might want for an extended trip, and it seems like it would work well as a way of organizing Kindle stuff inside a bigger carry-on or suitcase. While my favorite is the SleeveCase — it fits the way I use my Kindle best — I would recommend any of Waterfield’s Kindle cases to anyone looking for something more protective and nicer-looking than the standard cover.