I know you all love that leather smell when you go in to Wilson's leather. It's half the reason to go in there. Unless you are a vegan. In that case you're probably not reading this. If you eat meat or are thinking of converting keep reading.
I love making bags and briefcases out of leather. It's such a beautiful, renewable resource. Granted, large unrestricted tanneries can produce some bad chemicals, vegetable tanned leather, if properly processed, limits these. Another cool thing about leather is that if you really take care of it, it will last. And it looks great as it ages. But it is also biodegradable. So when you are old and you and your leather bag are all worn out, you can just toss it and it will decompose. Can't say that about synthetic leather or any other man made products that you might use to make a briefcase. You can even recycle the hardware too!
Here I'll show you the construction of one of my bags. This one even has a hidden compartment in the bottom!