The men’s handbag is back

The men’s handbag is back

For a long time it was ridiculed, but that is water under the bridge. Men have long appreciated the qualities of the handbag.

So…are bags the new sneakers?

It can’t be said that the handbag is a new invention. The men’s handbag has always been around, somehow. In the near past, however, men who carried a handbag were in the minority. The accessory in their hands? Long considered an unfashionable foreign body.

But since men like Harry Styles or Justin Timberlake have carried handbags as a matter of course as their female colleagues, the wind has changed. The tenor of the fashion brands: Men, you can’t escape us!

Companies are focusing primarily on the younger generation. And it makes sense: if you’re not afraid of skirts, nail polish and pearl necklaces, you’ll probably want more. And yes, even sweatpants wearers have to store their keys, money and cell phone somewhere. Now that the male target group has proven it can lay down hundreds of euros for sneakers, they are ready for stage two: the “murse” (English for “man-purse”). Accordingly, they have been courted in a targeted manner for some time now.

Two years ago, for example, the Italian label Gucci recreated a late-night talk show (with James Corden as host). One of the celebrity guests? Harry Styles, who, like Dakota Johnson or Diane Keaton, appeared quite naturally with a handbag over his shoulder.

Now, one could dismiss the campaign, which was still created under creative director Alessandro Michele, as “water under the bridge.” But no, LVMH’s competitors are also focusing on male handbag wearers: Justin Timberlake is currently promoting a bag by Louis Vuitton and artist Yayoi Kusama.

Men’s enthusiasm for bags has been emerging for some time. In the U.S., sales of men’s and unisex bags were up 700 percent in 2021 compared to 2018, market research firm NPD Group analyzed at the time.

During the men’s fashion weeks in Milan and Paris, it looked quite as if handbags had long been a cross-gender fashion phenomenon. That would be a welcome development.

Source: The Standard

Translated from the German
Anne Feldkamp
Photo – Claire Guillion – Camera Press

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