5 Designers That Made The 'Man Bag' Fashionable

Over the years, fashion trends have evolved tremendously. We have gone from a society that was not accepting of low cut dresses, to being welcoming to dresses made of meat. In the menswear department, many accessories such as pocket watches have quickly gone in and out of style, while suits have transformed from oversized Zoot Suits to the very tailored and slim cut Burberry and Tom Ford suites that we see today.

The thing about menswear and men’s accessories is that they don’t have the ability to evolve the way that women’s wear does, and sometimes whenever a men’s designer takes a big risk and tries something new in a very big way, it’s not always well received by the men of the world who are used to things being a certain way. Don’t get me wrong, there are some wonderfully fashionable men out there, but most men have a hard time embracing an avant garde design and taking it from the runway to the street. For instance, kilts circa Alexander McQueen's Fall 2014 collection.

Then, enters…the “man bag.” Some may view it as a luxurious must-have piece in their wardrobe each season, while others turn their heads away whenever one enters the room and tightly grip their briefcase. No matter which of these scenarios applies to you, we are here to set the record straight: the man bag has officially become cool and you need to start accepting it.

Designers from all over the world have worked hard to give men an accessory that is something more than just a briefcase or luggage, but an awesome in between option that is completely acceptable in society. It doesn't mean that you are trying to be a man with a purse because the man bag is very different.

The whole man bag concept is simple really; it is smaller than a briefcase and can be slung over your shoulder for comfort, but not feminine like a purse. The man bag is much more functional and masculine in design, and saves you from walking around all day looking like a psycho with your wallet, keys, and cell phone (because really…what more does a man need?) bulging out of your pockets. The man bag is fashion forward, yet perfect for every man to wear on a daily basis, and has even become a necessity for men everywhere.

This man’s accessory was introduced almost a hundred years ago in the form of a briefcase as a way for lawyers to transport briefs that they had been working on at home back to the office. Over time, these briefcases evolved from being something that only lawyers use, to something that every man carried with them on a daily basis to and from work.

As the years went by, and fashion became more and more important, men’s fashion designers knew that they needed an additional accessory to carry them through the day. That is when the “man bag” was born. It was created as a functional piece that was smaller than a bulky briefcase that men could use to carry their important belongings. It first started as an extension of the briefcase, only being made in basic black or brown leather options. Then, designers started introducing patterns, splashes of color, and most recently—ombre design (which came from Fendi).

The same way that women have their renowned “it” bags of the season; this has become that special piece for men. It is a new way for men to showcase their personal and unique style without going overboard with the accessories.

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5 Diesel: $190 - $300

A sportier look for a sportier guy, Diesel has completely recreated the “man bag” for this target market. Putting sporty twists on classic silhouettes such as messengers and cross-bodies, they have curated a collection that indulges in camouflage and bright colors, accenting classic colors of leather touches, and adding phrases such as “for successful living” as a reminder to their customer base. Filled with pockets for the techy guys as well, Diesel really paid attention to the details and knew what a man would want from their collection.

4 Fendi: $750 - $2,000

Exploring splashes of color this season like an artist with a vision gone awry, Fendi bring new meaning to the term “man bag” and allows bright color to become an acceptable part of a man’s accessory. Keeping everything of a very masculine level by basing everything on their signature tobacco shade, Fendi has taken menswear accessories by storm. Sleek in shape, but rich and color, no man can go wrong by indulging in a Fendi bag that they will surely sport season after season.

3 Prada: $620 - $2,450

Prada has been amazing with their revolutionizing of the man bag because they have really taken this idea and run with it, by creating a mixture of super luxe designs as well as options that are nylon and much more casual. Their designs range from fancy and refined to outrageous with splashes of floral prints, beach scenes, and bold Hibiscus prints. They truly have everything in their collection to appeal to any man whether you like a more sleek style or relaxed messenger or cross body option. If you are a man looking for a “man bag” that wows and truly turns heads wherever you are passing by, then make Prada your starting point in this shopping endeavors.

2 Bottega Veneta: $2,450 - $3,780

Known for their classic basket weaved leather accessories; Bottega Veneta has completely carried over their classic look to their menswear category and created the “man bag” with their classic spin. Designing everything from woven messengers to classic briefcases, this brand never disappoints. Adding some pops of bright blues and stripes to their collection, you can't go wrong with a bag as unyielding as a Bottega Veneta to use to rock your “man bag” style!

1 Valentino: $3,750 - $4,525

Italian designer Valentino Garavani held his first significant show back in 1962, indulging in lace details, feminine silhouettes, and of course his infamous vibrant shade of red. This season, he has come back with a vengeance and going after menswear as he gave just as many masculine details in his camouflage “men bag” collection, giving men (finally) the opportunity to add a little design to a basic concept. These bags aren't over the top, but delicately intertwine classic camouflage colors together on canvas and leather, finishing them off with the classic Valentino Rockstuds.

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