Tuesday, February 22, 2011

The Hunt for the Man Bag

One of the refreshing sites to behold at Fashion Week is the congregation of smart dressing men. The highlight of this spectacle is in the sleek carry ons, referred to as "Man Bags."
I look at my own bag and I see the rampant examples of items a man would want to carry, such as a camera, a planner, a water bottle, a book or paper, chapstick, ipod...on and on. And all those cargo pockets have to go! 
I spotted this Louise Vuitton, pictured below to the left, on a male spectator at the Trias show. You don't need to buy an expensive bag such as this one, or even a bag that looks like this one, if your taste differs. No matter your taste, this bags quality and versatility, meaning it's ability to work with a variety of looks, is noteworthy in finding your own.
With a little detective work, I have found that perhaps an affordable, wearable bag is in your arms reach, and your arm will love it! 

Louis Vuitton 

Finding an affordable bag is "in the bag." There are a ton of discounted designer finds at places such as TJ Maxx and Nordstrom Rack. Even check out thrift stores, where you can score vintage, one of a kind carryalls. I checked out some spots in one of the cheapest shopping areas of New York City: Astoria, Queens. Here are some of my finds: 


Gap. $39.50. I like a man bag with this type of handle.

It also comes with a shoulder strap.

Simple, sporty, and casual, yet the bold red still gives it personality.  I love this bag for a man, especially since it's price is $5.99, thanks to The Salvation Army on Steinway in Astoria.

Pole Berg, located at 3164 Steinway Street, offered more sporty options, with an impressive, daring collection of Puma Bags. 


$65. These Puma bags are for the bold. They may not be for everyone, but after all, if they were, they wouldn't  make you stand out in a crowd.

$75. The green is cool. Personally.  I am not a fan of having a large label printed on any of my clothing, but if you are a fan of Puma, and like that designer label look, Puma has good quality bags.

Web Deal!: Out of curiosity, I checked out the Puma Website, and found this bag on clearance: 
$35 down from $55 at Puma.com. A black and white bag could be a great option because it goes with everything and adds a bit of class, like saddle shoes. The Puma label is also discrete.
Sometimes you can be surprised with what you'll find at stores you assume to be dollar stores or tourists traps.  Located on Steinway Street. 
Both of these have white and black appeal, visually appeasing graphics, and seem to be very durable. They could absolutely add great interest to any look. Can't beat the price either. By Yak Pak. $20. 
Yak Pak $20.

The higher end of Astoria shopping, Index is located at 3055 Steinway Street.

This D&G, at $225, has a nice clean pattern and cool color combination that would mix well with clothes. The messenger style bag is probably appealing to many men.

This could be a match for many men: non flashy, versatile, and I hate to say it, but masculine. It's for the guy who doesn't want to say much with his bag, just that he likes to look classic and cool. Y-3 $195.

As you see, bags can be found even in the most dubious areas and with the most strapped budgets, no pun intended. I'll take this point home (carried in stylish bag!) and close with a man bag I found on the R train the other day: 

Zara, "About a year ago" and for "Less than $100."


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