Month: September 2012

Bags for Men


So what to do when the man in your life decides to make a mid career change from attorney to high school history teacher? My reaction (of course) was to start researching the perfect bag for the new career, since the leather Kenneth Cole bag (similar) I got him for his old career seemed a little too formal and heavy. I was on the hunt for something more casual. A durable light weight canvas messenger bag, preferably with a hunting/preppy twist.

My favorite was the LL Bean Sea-Washed Canvas Messenger Bag in olive. I liked the idea of “sea-washed” right off the bat, even though honestly I have no idea what that means. The zippered pocket on the front would be perfect for a subway pass, a side pocket for phone, and and organized interior for notebooks and school supplies.

His favorite (and the one we will be ordering) is the JCrew Abingdon Laptop Bag in slate grey. Size is good and handles at the top so it can be carried both ways. I like the black leather contrasted with the grey waxed canvas. The canvas makes this bag casual, but the briefcase-like shape keeps it crisp and structured.

Here are some other ideas I can up with on Pinterest when brainstorming bags for men. What are your favorite men’s bags? Any other brands I should be checking out?

Menswear Watch

True story: I haven’t worn a watch since the late 90’s. Back then it was a Kenneth Cole Reaction watch that was a part of a silver colored bracelet. It was my favorite watch and when the clasp broke I called around to get it fixed but sadly found out it was beyond repair. After that I just stopped wearing watches, and started carrying a cell phone.

About a year ago I started thinking about watches again. It can be really distracting to have to check my iPhone for the time, and on my old phone it also means a drain on the battery. I also started seeing lots of women wearing large chunky menswear inspired watches, which i preferred far more to dainty, flimsy look of the typical Ladies watch.

Eventually I happened across an old Swiss Army watch belonging to the boyfriend. It had been sitting in an shoebox for years so he was fine when I brought it over to a neighborhood jeweler to adjust the band for my wrist. They quoted me $12, but when I went to pick it up they said it would actually be $10.

So score a perfect chunky menswear watch for $10!

Statement necklaces

I have a theory on jewelry: It should either be really cheap and over the top, or expensive fine jewelry. Nothing middle of the road and trying to have it both ways. Of course I mostly have cheap stuff so here are two of my favorites:

Wooden necklace: I got this at Beacon’s Closet in Park Slope. I saw it in the glass case and assumed it was a one of a kind vintage 70’s necklace, and then the cashier reached into a drawer that held about a hundred of them, mass-produced and  shrink wrapped in plastic. But I love it nonetheless, and have never run into another person wearing it. My current favorite pairing is with my L.L. Bean sailor shirt to de-prep and make the stripes more interesting.

H&M “Jewels”: I bought this recently at the H&M at 59th & Lex and I assume it is in every store. For a day time look I wore with a Gap chambray shirt, inspired by a display I saw at JCrew of their denim shirt and the flower lattice necklace. For the night I switched out the necklace to wear with a black tank and pink silk pencil skirt (bridesmaid skirt from my sister’s wedding!) I love this necklace since it is both simple yet complex, perfect for day to night, and makes a nice clinking sound when I walk.

Pictures from my Instagram feed: thebagblog

Madewell Quality Mending Co. Bowling Bag

I’ve been long overdue in writing a post about this fabulous bag I got about a year ago from Madewell from Quality Mending Co. I had seen this bag at the Madewell store on Fifth Avenue a few times but at $68 I couldn’t justify the splurge.

After a few more weeks I peeked in the store again and the bowling ball bag had been marked down (around $20-30 though I forget the exact price) and there was one left in stock, which I grabbed right away and headed over to the check out line.

This bag is perfect for a casual evening out. I usually grab it when we get drinks in the neighborhood. It it the perfect size to hold a phone, keys and some make up, and thanks to the round round shape it can hold more bulky items like a large scarf. The army green is my favorite colors and the canvas is thick and durable, and the gold colored hardware is a nice touch like the rivets on the handle.

Fall Oxfords and other cozy things

I’m starting to get excited about cozy fall clothes, and I have scarves, clog boots, suede ankle boots, floppy felt hats, chunky cardigans with a belt, and skinny cords on my mind.

It is still warm here in NYC, so to start dipping my toe into fall wear I’ve dug out my black oxfords. I got these at the Buffalo Exchange a few years ago when I was in search of some menswear inspired shoes but never liked them that much since I felt very frumpy when I wore them with socks. Now I think the trick is to wear when it is still warm out with a pop of ankles and a girly blouse. Menswear but still feminine.

What are you excited about for the fall?

Photo from my Instagram feed. Find me at “thebagblog”