As confessed previously, I have a overactive interest in bags. Ask me about designers, fabrics, linings, metal hardware, fastenings…I will spout details for days. I can spot quality from a mile away, and tend to focus on the vessel for my stuff, even when the stuff inside is collectively less valuable.
Tampa isn’t really the city for the accessories obsessed – no more than DC is a city obsessed with cars, or LA with politics. We can’t carry suede much (too rainy), messenger bags are less critical (don’t walk much), and there is less choice in shopping than in larger metros.
Spend any time in Manhattan? Since it’s the epicenter of fashion, and home to every store on earth…you’ll see a whole crop of different designer duds that have yet to infiltrate middle America. Ever heard of Goyard? Ask a Yankee…
The reliable ebb and flow of trends in bags is pretty amusing – designers invent a new variation of the bag, and then spin a million variations of that design, to keep the consumer satiated. Think: constant recreation of the Louis Vuitton Monogram print, which has taken a thousand forms over time.
Men can get in on the action now more than ever. Many brands have men’s only stores, and offerings have expanded to match those of womenswear. Below are some sexy new options for the hungry male version of Carrie Bradshaw.
The slimming down and dressing up; portfolio clutch:
Banana Republic Donovan – $98
Like brooding, molten orange leather?
The (so) fresh & (so) clean update to a rugged, manly classic:
Filson canvas zip-top tote – $160
The delicate but tough American suede beauty:
Tiffany Mason Tote – $1,050
The trendy frivolity:
Topman metallic backpack – $60
The Made in America lux classic:
The Backpack, reinterpreted:
Cheap & Chic version of the Raf… Nixon Principle – $35
Inoffensive camo in convenient tote format:
Rag & Bone Rugged Camo Tote – $325 *wait for the sale
The big time splurge, worthy of heirloom status:
The art piece, to be looked at but not touched:
The affordable, sporty tote:
And for the little label whore that lives inside us all…
Louis Vuitton Damier District PM – $1,130
Each of these bags is on my ShopStyle app favorites list; I’d be delighted to carry any of them. In this time of fashion democratization and disappearing market gaps, you can find any type of carried accessory, for any purpose, in nearly any material, at any price. Stay vigilant for deals, and know what to pay full price for (read: almost nothing).
More importantly, don’t be boring. Don’t get a black leather briefcase, unless it’s woven and smells like heaven. Put all your worthless crap in a beautiful vessel, that will delight you day in and day out. I learned recently that objects can be experiential too, and I fully believe that the tangibles you use everyday fall into that category.