When I look at a bag I’ve never seen before for the first time, the first thing I always try to imagine is where I’d take it. Accessories both need and provide context in various ways, and a strong sense of how a bag fits into the aesthetic world is one of the surest ways to start evaluating how well-designed it is.
Man Bag Monday(Page 5)
We’ve talked at length on several occasions about women’s handbags and how they’re adapted to the men’s market, and here’s yet another example of exactly that: the Valentino Studded Leather Pouch it might not bear the recognizable Rockstud moniker, but you don’t have to be a fashion expert to understand this bag’s design lineage.
We love any collaboration that yields gorgeous bags, but Coach + Billy Reid, which is brand new for Fall 2013, is particularly close to our hearts because of the way it unites two classic American brands. You’re all familiar with New York-based Coach, one of the most enduring leather goods brands in American history, and if you’re not familiar with Alabama-based Billy Reid, we’d like to provide a formal introduction.
Considering how aggressive and violent the famous, recently reissued Givenchy Rottweiler Antigona Tote is, you’d expect that the men’s version would be even more snarly and vicious. Alas, that’s not the case – the pup that graces the Givenchy Doberman Nightingale Tote doesn’t look overly perturbed by our presences or concerned that we might enter his yard.
One of my favorite things to do with men’s bags is to examine how they differ from women’s bags by the same designer. Very often, a brand will base new men’s and women’s bags on the same idea, and even more often, a successful women’s bag will be translated for the male market after it has already reached prominence.
I’ve never thought of anything as a “commuter bag” before, but if you live in a place where much of your moving about is done by public transportation, you know one when you see one. No matter whether the bag will be carried by a man or woman, it needs to have plenty of space, multiple pockets, a full top closure and a strong, comfortable shoulder strap, at the very least.
Most men, no matter their sexual orientation, personal style or level of comfort with their masculinity, don’t really want to look like they’re carrying a purse. Even if the bag is intended for women and the male owner is fine with that, dudes seem to gravitate more toward unisex shapes like totes and satchels in dark, neutral colors.
Now that the calendar has officially rolled over into August, young men and women across the country are preparing to head off to college, either for the first time or as season university professionals. Either way, everyone who’s going will need a good, sturdy bag to lug around campus, and we thought we would take this Man Bag Monday opportunity to introduce future and current collegians alike to a half dozen school bags that are also pretty good-looking, in addition to being practical.