Nordstrom Anniversary Sale

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I remember the heyday of the hobo. Back when I first got into handbags, circa 2005, hobos were just as popular as crossbodies are today; they weren’t the flashiest It Bags on the scene, but they were the thing everyone had in their closets for when they needed to, you know, actually carry something functional. Then, of course, the era of the “optional crossbody strap” dawned, and after that, the straps weren’t so optional anymore – if you were carrying a shoulder bag, it had a long strap, with few exceptions. Trends are inevitably cyclical, though, so is it possible that hobos are ready for a comeback?

A couple of people have mentioned to me recently the idea that maybe hobos are ready to make a big splash, and I can’t help but think that I heard the same chatter a few seasons ago, to little avail. There will always be a market for hobos in the classic Gucci vein, but if women are used to having their bags a little further away from them – either crossbody or on a long shoulder strap – I doubt many will want to go back to stuffing a hobo in their armpit. (Seriously, why couldn’t those strap drops ever just be a little longer?) Every now and then, I break out a beloved Balenciaga Day Bag from 2007, but it rarely replaces my standard PS1 for more than a day or two – a longer shoulder strap just feels more modern and versatile, not to mention ideal for public transportation.

That last part is important, though. I seem to remember caring less about a bag’s structure when I drove myself everywhere, which is what the vast majority of Americans do, so my current existence in the bubble of New York City might be skewing my perception of the relative hobo-readiness of the rest of the country. At this point, I defer to you, our lovely readers: do you wish designers offered more exciting hobo options?

If you like the Gucci Emily Hobo Bag above, you can pick it up for $1,590 via Neiman Marcus.

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