Even though trouser pockets sagging under the weight of a wallet, keys and other paraphernalia are hardly the stuff that sharp dressing is made of, small bags carried by men were once seen as a joke and/or effeminate.
Over the past few years, thankfully, masculine purses have become a lot more commonplace, partly as a result of a proliferation of desirable designs by influential brands such as Gucci, Dior Men and Louis Vuitton.
Calling bags the new sneakers, a recent Wall Street Journal article reported research firm NPD Group’s findings that “US sales of men’s and unisex handbags were up almost 700 per cent in 2021 compared with 2018”. In the same story, Benjamin Schneider, a senior fashion analyst at research company Euromonitor International, noted that bags are “definitely among the fastest-growing, if not the fastest-growing (menswear) segment.”
For those looking for new stylish ways to tote their belongings while on the go, the Fall/Winter fashion season offers plenty of fresh options. During his nearly four years at Louis Vuitton, the late Virgil Abloh was behind the creation of many desirable bags, ranging from a Keepall that lit up to new shapes featuring the black and grey Monogram Eclipse canvas.
Building on Abloh’s short-lived but impactful tenure at the brand, its latest collection has bags such as padded totes that riff off protective sports gear, as well as cases in distorted shapes.