Thursday, 18 February 2010

Don't Shoot the Messenger; Steal His Bag!

Just as rucksacks become hot property in menswear, I've decided that I'm all about the courier bag. It stems (as with many of my purchases recently) from the bicycle. Much as I love a rucksack, you can't swing it around your body to get your phone/keys etc on a regular basis, and if it's warm, your back will get all sweaty. Plus, I just can't get a rucky to look good with my trenchcoat (in fact I've not even worn a cross-body bay with the trench - it crumples it and spoils the lines...or something). Anyway, since late last summer I've been reusing what was my old school bag from 6th Form - A red Manhattan Portage number that my Dad bought me back from NYC. I must've had this for a good 12 years, and aside from a slightly mashed buckle, it's still in perfect order. It's probably about the simplest bag you can buy, one zip pocket and a main pouch, thick black strap and that's it, but that's why it's lasted so long. It looks fine whatever it's stuffed with and is moderately waterproof as well, which helps. A quick glance through my wardrobe shows it's actually the oldest thing in there (vintage stuff that I've bought more recently excluded), which is a testament both to the durability of Manhattan Portage and the vast turnaround of clothes one can have in a decade. From the oldest item to the newest, and it's another courier bag. This time, it's one from the recent(ish) Raf Simons for Eastpak SS09 range which I picked up from Le 66 on the Champs-Elysées in Paris on a recent 2-day trip for my birthday. It might look like a dodgy shopping centre from the outside, but inside it's packed with discounted clothes and shoes for boys and girls - I'm talking Acne, Marc Jacobs, Paul & Joe, Castelbajac, Helmut Lang - good quality streetwear in other words. This beauty was tucked away and 50% off, making it a perfect indulgent-but-not-mad Paris purchase. It's longer than a conventional courier bag (oblong rather than rectangular) and zips up with some lovely little silver leather zip-pulls. It's also got a reflective silver leather base; perfect for cycling at night! Sale+Simons+Cycling=Too good to miss. I've been using it for a couple of weeks now, and all's working out nicely. It more than copes with the crap I haul about all day, and like the Portage is pretty waterproof. This might all change if I find a rucksack I like the look of, but for now, I'm firmly in/a Camp Courier. Other Staples this week:
Raf Simons for Eastpak & Manhattan Portage courier bags
Ben & Jerry's Chocolate Fudge Brownie icecream
Music from Ibiza 1999 (and DJing it at a house party)
Tom Ford's film, A Single Man
Finishing work, and embarking on a freelancing career
Paul Auster's new novel, Invisible
A pack of new socks from M&S

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