Louis Vuitton’s much-publicized move away from its iconic monogram canvas has resulted in two accessories biproducts: more leather and exotic handbags and more Damier handbags. With the introduction of the Louis Vuitton Spring 2014 Men’s Damier Bags, both are now available together. (more…)
Man Bag Monday(Page 2)
We’ve talked previously about menswear’s recent, vibrant facelift, especially when it comes to the accessory market’s various printed and patterned bags. Designers have gone beyond the traditional stripes and plaids that are often associated with menswear, and these new choices indicate an edgier and more androgynous approach. To continue with this list, we have the signature Givenchy rose camouflage print in the form of a simple nylon backpack.
Givenchy’s floral pattern is a spring must-have in womenswear, and because Givenchy tends to play fast and loose with the distinctions between its men’s and women’s lines, it was only a matter of time before this print arrived in the men’s collection. For all the men who like to make a great street style impression, you won’t go unnoticed with this flamboyant accessory. I would definitely steal this bag from my guy friends.
Buy your Givenchy Floral Backpack through Bergdorf Goodman for $1,125.
Tomorrow, I set off for a week in Georgia to visit my family and attend my college’s spring football scrimmage, so I’ve been thinking a lot about travel bags in lieu of, you know, actually packing a travel bag. They’re the unsung heroes of the leather goods industry – they do a lot of work, and none of it is in optimal conditions, no matter how many ads leather goods brands show us that depict beautiful Italian men loading immaculate weekenders into the back seats of vintage convertibles.
In a practical sense, the Ben Minkoff Oversized Weekender might offer the best of both worlds at the best price you’ll find for a full leather bag of this size. Saffiano is among the most durable leathers you’ll find, and the largely black colorway, reinforced corners and multiple carry options will help resist wear. Based on its scale relative to the model in East Dane’s product pictures, it’d easily hold enough to cover your needs for a long weekend trip, and for a lengthier travel time, it’d make a solid carry-on. For less than $500, you can’t ask for much more. Buy through East Dane for $450.
It’s officially spring, even if it doesn’t feel like it, and with the eventually warmer weather comes the promise of travel. A good weekender or duffel is a universal necessity for both men and women, and the Lotuff Leather Travel Duffel Bag is an attractive, somewhat reasonably priced, American-made option that we can picture accompanying us on many a summer trip.
Lotuff Leather isn’t a big brand, but sometimes going beyond the known names and exploring independent designers and manufacturers can pay dividends. This simple, traditional bag is made in entirely in New England by experienced artisans, which gives the piece a sense of place and history that a more mass-produced bag might not have.
While the price ($1,050) is still not tiny, it’s also not as expensive as similar pieces of the same size and fabrication often are. If you want a weekend bag that will result in envious inquiries from your friends (and that will let you brag about finding a well-made American manufacturer), this is the bag for you. Buy through East Dane for $1,050.
I don’t get fooled often. Not only is a sense for leather a biproduct of my job, but most brands that use embossed faux-exotics for their bags just don’t use very good ones. The differences between real and fake are most apparent when it comes to python, but usually crocodile and alligator are pretty easy to spot as well, even when the bag is very expensive. The Neil Barrett Embossed Croc Tote had me going for a minute, though.
When I scrolled past this bag, I didn’t think for a second that it might not be real croc. When I read the description and price, I was surprised – the finish has just the right amount of gloss and variation, and the simple structure usually indicates that a designer would like to draw attention to the material used. The clean, somewhat anonymous lines are perfect for showing off one of the finest materials in the world, and this tote does a fine job of convincing you that’s exactly what you’re looking at. It’d be hard to find something that looks more expensive for the price. Buy through SSENSE for $1,325.
Some designers have such a specific design aesthetic and consistently use such specific details in recognizable ways that you can spot a new bag from the brand a mile away – think Bottega Veneta’s iconic woven patterns, or Mulberry’s classic postman’s lock. The same can be said of contemporary designer Alexander Wang when looking at this Wallie Washed-Leather Backpack; Wang never ceases to amaze me, and I was instantly intrigued by this backpack. (more…)
Combining cars and fine leather goods isn’t a new idea; I remember seeing commercials for limited edition Lexus sedans upholstered in Coach leather (and with a matching set of Coach luggage) when I was a kid, and Hermes has kitted out concept cars by everyone from Hyundai to Bugatti. The latest automaker-luxury goods duo to give the idea a whirl is BMW and Louis Vuitton, and they’ve just launched the Louis Vuitton x BMW i8 Limited Edition Carbon Fiber Luggage at select LV boutiques worldwide. (more…)
Outside the bounds of the most forward-thinking sectors in menswear, printed and patterned men’s bags, besides plaid, have long been basically nonexistent. Florals and leopard print are a tough enough sell in shirts, let alone in a bag that a dude might be expected to carry every day. Menswear is expanding rapidly, though, especially when it comes to western men’s ideas of what they can wear or carry to still feel “masculine.” That means that even the most mainstream designers have given men a lot more interesting things to play with over the past few seasons, which includes a lot of print bags for spring.
Below, we’ve assembled a small selection of our current favorites from some of the globe’s best accessory brands. Ladies, feel free to snap these up for yourselves.
I love buffalo plaid. It’s almost always red and black, which is my favorite color combination, and I’m already a pretty big appreciator of plaid, both on my person and on the persons of male-type people. Considering that, my affection for the Jack Spade Dipped Buffalo Check Utility Tote isn’t exactly shocking. If you or your man is sick of staid, neutral man bags but still want a classic look, this tote is a perfect option.
Plaid enjoys periods of particular favor (like the one we’re having right now), but it never falls all the way out of style, even in down years. It’s sort of like leopard print, in that way; a thing that is so familiar, so endemic to the fabric of fashion and style, that it almost becomes a color unto itself. It’s also a cold-weather staple, so even though spring styles are starting to arrive in stores, you’ll still have plenty of actual time left in winter to carry this well-priced tote. Buy through East Dane for $275.
Although menswear’s reach is expanding rapidly, I rarely find myself wishing I could hop to the other side of the gender aisle to experiment; women’s fashion is just a lot more fun. The Givenchy L.C. 24H Bag is the rare piece that makes its women’s equivalent, the Givenchy Lucrezia Bag, look bad by comparison.
I like the Lucrezia, but it’s never felt quite right to me. So many companies make bags of exactly that same shape, and Givenchy’s only tweak was the front trim extending down from the handle attachments. This bag isn’t much different, but the folded top corners and slightly domed top make it feel slightly different than bags like the Gucci Boston or the Louis Vuitton SC. It’s just enough of a change from the expected shape to make the bag feel distinct.
Those changes are likely the result of the Lucrezia being refashioned as men’s overnight bag, and the domed top gives the interior some extra roominess. Ladies like a little extra room too, though, and I can’t help but wish that the Lucrezia more closely resembled the L.C. Buy thorugh Mr. Porter for $2,625. (Also worth noting: this bag is far larger than the medium Lucrezia and $30 less expensive. Dudes be gettin’ all the good fashion deals.)