In general, men’s bags cost less than women’s do, even when the men’s version is based on a popular women’s design (and is larger than that design). The only place where that seems to be particularly untrue is when it comes to backpacks; perhaps designers assume that a man buying a luxury backpack is likely to be more accustomed to to exorbitant fashion pricing than one just trying to pick up a nice briefcase.

Even non-leather backpacks can reach four figures pretty quickly, and I’m not much of a fan of that no matter the gender of the bag’s intended audience. If you’re a dude who wants a designer backpack from a buzzy brand under a thousand dollars, check out the Carven Leather Backpack.

This design is a totally pared-down take on the Jansports we all carried in middle school, except now that we’re adults, the bag is rendered in leather that appears to be super buttery. For the size of the bag and how functional it is to have a backpack around, this bag is well worth the price of $695 via East Dane.

It’s not often that I have the urge to refer to any bag as “jaunty,” let alone a men’s briefcase, but it’d be hard to argue that the Ted Baker Harlemm Mixed Leather Briefcase is anything other than that. It’s a traditional brief shape with a little bit of kick.

Making a briefcase feel a little bit fun without making it utterly inappropriate for an office is a bit of a tough line to toe, and although this bag would probably garner a few weird looks in the most conservative work environments, it would probably fly in most. Teal leather is for a very specific man, though, and probably one who pays a lot of attention to detail in the other areas of his appearance.

Buy through Bloomingdale’s for $375.

I’ve got a Monday morning confession for you guys: I listen to too much Drake. Arguably, any Drake is “too much Drake,” but I probably listen to too much, even by lenient standards. We all have our crosses to bear. In one song that comes up often on my iPod (“Up All Night,” if you’d like to Google it and then judge me accordingly), rapper Nicki Minaj makes a guest appearance in which she speaks of giving Lil Wayne the “Louis Presidential Briefcase.” If she’s speaking of the Louis Vuitton Président Classeur Briefcase, Ms. Minaj clearly has fine taste.

The Président Classeur is, like a Birkin, a bag that’s really in-your-face about being expensive and made of fine materials without being logo-ridden or otherwise obvious. It’s discreet, in a way, but in other ways, totally not discreet–you can tell it costs a zillion dollars from 20 paces, even if you’re not someone who’s well-versed in luxury goods. It’s the perfect status-symbol accessory for men (unless you count watches, which we don’t, because this is not the place for watches).

Of course, it has a price tag to match. Pick up one of your own for $11,100 via Louis Vuitton.

Mark Cross might be best known (in the US, at least) for its women’s bags, but the brand has the kind of staid, classic aesthetic that easily appeals to men as well. With a traditional structure and rich, whiskey-colored leather, the Mark Cross Two-Pocket Messenger is professorial in the most dignified sense of the word.

It’s reached that point in the summer where I’m having a bit of fall nostalgia, and this bag reminds me of the leaves changing color in the historical part of my college’s campus. It’s been a few years since I was in school, as it’s probably been for most of you, but that doesn’t mean you (or your dude) won’t have use for a beautiful messenger with a slightly academic bent.

Pick up one of your own for $1,995 via Barneys.

First of all, the name of the Westbrook XO Barneys New York x Want Les Essentiels de la Vie Kastrup Backpack is absurdly long. It has a lot to tell us, for sure, but it’s choosing to convey all that information in a really convoluted way, and it’s making this very simple, modern backpack seem complicated. It’s not! But in case this is the first you’re hearing about Barneys’ latest menswear collaboration, allow me to explain. (more…)

It’s not that men have more functional needs that women (not by a long shot); often, it’s that they prioritize them far above aesthetics, because that’s what they’ve been socialized to do, and that’s why their bags are designed differently. The Rag & Bone Canvas Herringbone Messenger Bag is all substance, with just enough style to finish it off.

The main thing that attracts me to this bag is that even though it looks like it’s made out of a tweedy textile, the material is actually canvas. That means it’s going to be lightweight and appropriate to carry all year, but it still has that distinguished, old school look.

The bag itself is exactly what you’d expect for a messenger priced under $400, but it does have that note of slightly industrial, slightly minimalist Rag & Bone magic to it. The brand excels at making the best versions of everyday basics, and this is up there. Buy through Barneys for $395.

Canvas is a tricky textile. It’s perfect for summer because it’s lightweight and breathable, which can matter even in accessories when it’s so hot out that the idea of having anything heavy or warm touching your body is too much to bear. On the flip side, it can also look inappropriately casual or, at worst, totally sloppy. The Hermès Vintage Buenaventura Briefcase, thankfully, has none of those problems.

This piece, sourced by East Dane through famous vintage purveyors What Goes Around Comes Around, is the perfect summer bag for a professional man working in a corporate environment. The Buenaventura style is much more common in a messenger variant, which is more casual, but this well-tailored shape keeps the look formal.

If it tickles your fancy, pick up this black-on-black charmer via East Dane for $2,455.

While Louis Vuitton’s women’s business has been in a state of flux over the past two seasons, the men’s side has been humming along quite nicely in the hands of creative director Kim Jones. Jones’ has done a great deal in his relatively short tenure at the brand to make the men’s line distinctive, including creating its own logo of sorts. For Louis Vuitton Men’s Spring 2015, Jones continued to build on that foundation. (more…)

This past Saturday marked the official beginning of summer, according to nature, although the rest of us have been enjoying warm weather and leaving the office a little early on Fridays for weeks now. I celebrated this scientific designation by heading to the beach for a day, but if I were to turn a trip like that into a long weekend, I’d want the Herschel Malibu Collection Novel Duffel at my side. (more…)

Father’s Day is this weekend, which might be a surprise to you because shopping sites don’t remind you of it nearly as much as they do Mother’s Day, unless you’re a frequenter of the Home Depot site. I’m not, mostly because I have nowhere to store a ride-on lawn tractor (and I don’t have a lawn), but somehow, I’ve managed not only to remember, but come up with the perfect dad bag gift: the Coach Bleecker Bar Stripe Day Tote. Hear me out on this.

To me, the perfect dad gift has to strike a balance. You have to get him something that has a practical use, but also something that he might not necessarily think to buy for himself. A fashionable-but-functional bag sits firmly in that category, and although leather stripes might be a little out there for traditionalists, this bag has a lot of promising Cool Dad characteristics.

First, it’s big enough to be regarded as luggage of sorts, which might make bag-resistant dads feel a little better about carrying it. Second, it’s got two handle options – totally practical. Third, the blue/brown/tan colorway is absolutely dad-approved, even in conservative households. The styling might be a little bit modern, but someone’s gotta usher pops into the 21st century. If he’s already conquered the iPhone, here’s his next opportunity.

Buy through Coach for $698.

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