I am always astonished at the amount of things a man can stuff into his pockets. Wallet, keys, phone, iPod, chain, books, and other random items always seem to be pouring out of the pockets of all the male friends I have in my life. You’d think in this day and age we’d be able to come up with a better way for a man to carry all his belongings without them weighing down his trousers! Enter the Murse. That’s right, the Man Purse.
An elusive fashion accessory once used only by extremely fashion-forward men running in the most stylish of social circles and gay men (Who are always two steps ahead when it comes to trends than their straight counterparts), the murse has made its way from haute accessory to practical baggage. There are a number of options for men of all styles, so in saying that, may I present The Ultimate Murse Guide!
1) The Messenger Bag
A tried and true classic for hipsters or dorky working men out there, the messenger bag just barely makes Murse status. 100% practical and not usually stylish, the bag was originally synonymous with a blah beige tone and canvas material. Paired with a sloppy white tee or ill-fitting suit and you had a typical outfit to match its own meh appearance.
However, the messenger bag has undergone a modern transformation over the past little while and blah beige has been replaced by slick black and canvas for leather, with bold brass or silver hardware.
That sloppy white tee? It’s been updated to a fitted white v-neck under a casual cardigan and skinny cargo pants. And the ill-fitting suit? Fitted to polished perfection. With its fashionable updates, the messenger has gone from barely-there Murse status to certified styling’ carrier.
2) The Clutch
The most daring of Murses out there. I have only spotted a man grasping a clutch during uber-elite parties for Fashion Week. Hardly practical without any handles, this means the clutch must be carried either under a shoulder or by hand, making it the most noticeably purse-like of the murse styles out there.
Subject to ridicule and ribbing from less confident men, the clutch remains a rare breed to spot. However, when done right, it garners tremendous fashion kudos and can take an ensemble from slick to untouchable.
Keeping the rest of your outfit simple is the key, as clutches themselves are a simple accessory. For the upcoming fall/winter season, a luxe layered outfit is ideal, so think heavy knits with big wrap scarves under leather jackets, or thick blazers and tapered pants with a rugged yet stylish pair of boots. Top it all off with an appropriately handsome clutch and you’ve got yourself a one-of-a-kind man-ensemble.
3 ) The Shoulder Bag
While women cram all of their personal belongings into their purses, men tend to lean more towards practicality. That is, wallets, pens, work items like folders and documents, and laptops. This is where the shoulder bag comes into play.
More fashion-forward than the messenger bag, these satchels can range from simple on zipper, long-strapped bags to elaborately designed, attention-grabbing goodybags. Your outfit can range from simple, to layered, to all out glam, but the key here is confidence. The only way to pull off the shoulder bag murse is to know you own the look.
A dose of confidence is needed to wear all of the aforementioned murses, but with that and a slick, savvy bag to complete your ensemble, there are a plethora of stylish outfits to wear for the upcoming season. Be a little adventurous this season and try out one, or all, of these Murse styles — we promise you’ll look great and your pockets will thank you.