Sunday, 16 September 2007

Oh how far we've come from Joey's purse

It has been a lazy Sunday, it started off being as Lionel once say an "easy like Sunday morning" as I was treated to my weekly does of television. I watched Friends and I was inspired by the episode. Joey was auditioning for a 'sophisticated' part in a play, so Rachel offered to help him look the part. She outfits him at Bloomingdales, and part of the ensemble is a "man's bag," which bears a striking resemblance to a purse. Unfortunately, Joey's devotion to the bag ends up costing him the audition...All in all the episode did put the man bag on the map (well TV) but it was not received well. The episode featured a series of running jokes about Joey falling for a unisex handbag that resembles a purse. Not only is Joey's bag mocked by Ross and Chandler but, fatally for manbags, the moral of the story is: carry a bag and you will not get the job. However, this show was aired in 1999, things have changed or if they haven't and I'm just weird, well I'm happy to be so. In a world where I frequently carry lots of gadgets, magazines, books, keys and money rather than bulk out my pockets or ruin my suit trousers, the man bag in its various guises and sizes is a necessity.
I really like Jas M.B bags, have a look here and look at the collection of bags below:

You can see that I like this style of bag right now!

Paul Smith - Men who wouldn't normally carry bags would carry this bag

Topman Design - Black PVC holdall at only £50 - I like!

As we talked about following rules I will leave you with some insight on how to choose your Manbag by GQ's Cahrlie Porter and my responses to most of them.

How to choose your manbag by GQ's Charlie Porter

1) Follow function, not fashion. A good bag should have a clasp or a buckle only if it's got a purpose. The bells and whistles of women's bags just don't sit right in menswear (I don't agree with this one, there can be a time for bells and whistles!)
2) Ensure there are enough compartments to take keys, coins, phones and iPods. You don't want things banging around in the bottom of your bag, especially when your portmanteau acts as an all-day office. (Very true)
3) Think about the weight of the bag. If the leather is thick and heavy, then, when the bag is full of stuff, it will be too much of a burden. Men’s bags are normally bigger, but this doesn’t mean they should be impractical.
4) Look in unusual places. Fishermen’s bags by Brady are a current sleeper hit. They can be bought at Labour and Wait on Cheshire Street in London, while Topman has done a cheaper version in vivid colours for the summer.
5) Explore the unusual. Pochettes are returning this coming season, especially at Prada, where they have the appearance of an exercise book for a back-to-school look.

1) Don’t assume that shoppers are just for women. A canvas tote will look suitably masculine, especially with a navy trim. Marc by Marc Jacobs is currently selling canvas totes with the slogan “Give ‘Em Hell, Al” over an image of our fearless hero, Al Gore.
(I am looking for a cool leather tote for every day use)
2) Don’t overstuff the bag. The sharp edges of a too-big book can destroy the shape of a bag. (I am guilty of this from time to time)
3) Don’t stick to the style of your adolescence. Backpacks look great on skate kids, but a Valextra Premiere in white is a much more modernist choice for adulthood.
(In most cases I have to agree but on some guys it can look good)
4) Don’t worry about matching shoes to the bag. There’s nothing wrong this summer with carrying a tan leather valise with mustard patent sandals. (Mustard patent sandals...hmmm? Not sure about them)
5) Don’t worry if you can’t stomach the male bag; just ensure your clothing has the right pockets to carry your load. Designer Rick Owens hates bags, but hates trousers without good pockets even more. His clothes have enough hidden slots to carry a day’s worth of clutter. It’s a philosophy some other designers should follow. (I love practical, yet hidden pocket wizardry and applaud smart tailoring)

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