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.

If you haven’t caught World Cup fever yet, you’re probably alone, at least based on the daily shouting we hear from around our floor at work every day. I played soccer as a kid and have loved it since I was eight years old, but even you’re a relative novice when it comes to the beautiful game, the excitement and energy of the World Cup can be intoxicating.

In fashion, spotting something twice can be a coincidence, but once you’ve seen a similar piece three times, from three different brands, you can bet that you have a trend (or, at the very least, a trendlet) on your hands. It took no time at all for me to round up the three floral backpacks above, so you best believe that designers are looking to make dudes a little more flower-friendly for spring.

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.

As high-end handbags go, backpacks must be difficult to design. As a shape, everyone has carried a backpack, but most people only have experience with them as low-cost book-schleppers from their school daze. That means that designers have to lean really hard into a juvenile reference or steer entirely clear of it in order to be successful, and I think we know which way the Christian Louboutin Valou Backpack has gone.

Does the title of this post shock you? Does it even mildly surprise you? And if it does, is it because you thought the Chanel Graffiti Backpack, a standout piece from the brand’s Spring 2014 runway collection, would cost more?

We used to think of backpacks as the typical JanSport most of us wore in grade school, but in more recent years, designers have been churning out some seriously amazing backpacks. These past few years, we’ve seen numerous designer backpacks on the runway, celebrities and supermodels rocking them, and in tons of street style pictures from photographers and style bloggers alike.

For anyone hoping that the backpack trend might be a true flash in the pan that would disappear at the end of the season, I have some news that might upset you: the Proenza Schouler PS Backpack is one of the brand’s most visible new designs for Fall 2013, and usually Proenza is toward the front end of trends like this instead of the back.

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.

After 10 days of vacation, including this past Monday to celebrate Labor Day, I’m completely disoriented. It’s Wednesday, you say? I’ll take your word for it. You could tell me I was on Mars and I’d probably consider it fact for at least a split second.

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