Where can I find a classy-looking, ultra-slim wallet?
December 1, 2008 11:52 AM   Subscribe

What is your favorite slim, classy-looking wallet for men? I'm looking for a wallet that looks professional (maybe black or brown leather), and is also very compact. I've looked at the Slimmy but it seems almost too compact, and I'd be worried everything would fall out. Are there any wonders of wallet engineering out there that allow for a reasonable amount of cards and cash without creating a three-inch brick?

I have looked at the All-Ett as well, and am shying away because it's not all leather--the internal part is still the nylon cloth. Also, I have read about problems with credit cards falling out of the pockets if you don't stuff them full.

This is a present, hence the anonymity. I have read the other threads on the topic and looked at wallets online, but I'm worried the wallet won't be as slim as I'm looking for. I've read that European wallet-makers tend to have more ingenious designs. Has this been anyone's experience? What wallet allowed you to transition from a thick wallet that wore holes in your pants if you sat on it, to a wallet you forgot to take out of your pocket?
posted by anonymous to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (23 answers total) 16 users marked this as a favorite
card slot + money clip solved this very dilemma for me. Lots of stores carry different designers' interpretations of the same idea, Gucci, etc.
posted by plexi at 12:06 PM on December 1, 2008

Tumi makes a variety of small wallets that are quite nice. I like the Meridian with money clip: great for storing 2-4 cards and cash. The cash is exposed, though, so may not be classy enough for you.
posted by Nelson at 12:08 PM on December 1, 2008

A card case with a built-in clip for cash is a nice alternative, if you're open to non-billfold wallets:

Coach card case

I gave one of these to my boyfriend four or five ago, and he's still using it (the leather's just gotten better-looking over time, though I noticed the other day that one of the corner seams is beginning to unravel). I think he usually carries his license, at least four or five cards, receipts and a stray bit of paper here and there in the center pocket, and say around a dozen bills. Contents and stuffing level vary, but everything stays put. It's always very slim, slim enough to live in a front pocket without breaking the line of his pants, slim enough to be forgotten on occasion in the day's discarded clothes.

He does not, however, carry baby photos of kids who are now teenagers, half-stamped buy-10-get-one-free cards for every coffee shop he's ever been in, receipts going back a quarter, or other life detritus. He also carries business cards in a separate case, I think, when he needs them, and carries coins loose in his pocket. It's probably not a magic solution if the recipient just likes to carry around a lot of stuff.
posted by peachfuzz at 12:11 PM on December 1, 2008

I have a black "Big Skinny" wallet, and once you take off the logo, it looks fine. Not leather, but that's a good thing, as leather will make it considerably thicker. Also large enough to hold european bills and such. Only annoyance is no separator for bills (only a little plastic separator on the top that is sort of useless) so receipts and money go in the same slot. Otherwise it holds a bunch of cc's and business cards and is still quite thin and unobtrusive!

On looking at the site though, it seems my particular model might not be made anymore (the one that is tall enough for non US currency).
posted by Grither at 12:16 PM on December 1, 2008

Oh, on second read of the question it looks like leather is more of a necessity, in which case forget the Big Skinny. All-leather wallets are going to be thick, nothing you can do about it.
posted by Grither at 12:19 PM on December 1, 2008

Visit www.all-ett.com and take a look. These are great ! Either in leather or in cloth. Very impressive wallets. Good prices and good services.

posted by sandpine at 12:25 PM on December 1, 2008

Nthing a card case. I can no longer read the brand name on mine, but it holds my ID, 3 credit cards, business cards and as much cash as I'm willing to carry and is never thicker than half an inch. (What else do you need to put in there?)
posted by Ookseer at 12:31 PM on December 1, 2008

Also recommending a card case -- I've never once missed the three-inch brick wallet I used to have in my back pocket. I'm not sure what brand mine is either, but it holds maybe 10 cards (credit cards, ATM, driver's license, etc.) with ease.
posted by pardonyou? at 12:41 PM on December 1, 2008

Horribly expensive, but I do like my Braithwaite Wallets "Orpheus". Took an age to deliver (I pre-ordered while they were still being made), but am very happy with it.

Looks good, works well, and very VERY slim. I don't know what you mean by "reasonable amount" so can't guess if it'd be big enough for you. I carry 5 (sometimes 6) cards and a few bills.
posted by devbrain at 12:47 PM on December 1, 2008

I actually have a slimmy myself, and was pleasantly surprised that six months later, nothing falls out.

At the same time, it holds no more than, and is more expensive than, a standard bifold front-pocket wallet.
posted by Tomorrowful at 12:50 PM on December 1, 2008

Actually, go get one of those shiny metal cigarette holders. They're just the right size for credit cards and they usually have some sort of spring-loaded tongue that holds the contents down when you open up the holder.

I've been told that the metal in the case will demagnetize the credit cards, but I've been using one for at least 5 years with no untoward consequences. Maybe it's made of chromed tin or something.

Anyway, I continually get compliments for mine, as it is slim, shiny, and embossed with an attractive geometric pattern. Also, the rigid case keeps the cards from getting bent or worn down. The only warning is that you should make sure that the currency of your country of residence can fit in there, folded in half.
posted by LMGM at 1:02 PM on December 1, 2008

Yeah, think about a money clip. I've got one I found in my grandparents' coin drawer when I was a kid, and started using when I went on a simplicity kick as an adult. It forces me to do something with receipts every time I change my pants, as they won't fit in the clip with the 2 cards, on license, insurance card, and cash.
posted by notsnot at 1:17 PM on December 1, 2008

I've got a Slimmy too. Nothing's ever fallen out.

I consider it to be the best-of-class in the world of thin/novelty wallets if you don't carry too much around with you.
posted by svolix at 1:29 PM on December 1, 2008

I just got this from amazon last week and am happy with it.
posted by troy at 3:07 PM on December 1, 2008

I don't know how slim you want, but I've got a Ted Baker wallet, and it's pretty slim. They have retail stores in the US as well, so at least you could go and have a look.
posted by djgh at 3:53 PM on December 1, 2008

I really hate thick wallets, so I have a collection of progressively-slimmer wallets in a drawer -- from a regular tri-fold, to a bi-fold, to a small leather credit card case, and a few others, too. I tried the money clip thing, but that didn't work well for me -- I like keeping my cash with my cards, and the money clips that attach to a card case struck me as an awkward combination. If that's an option, though, there are some really beautiful money clips out there.

I've ended up with one of the All-Ett wallets, and it's far and away the best of any of the ones I've owned. Nothing falls out, though I guess I can see how some people might have that issue, maybe. I'm not sure if it is "classy" per se, but people do occasionally comment on it and say it looks nice, for whatever that's worth. It's just ultra-thin, black, unobtrusive and understated.

Second best was the card case, that had a pocket that worked for folded bills. This worked really well, except that there was no space for credit card receipts, so I either had to overstuff it or keep losing my receipts. But aside from the receipt issue, this is a really nice way to go.

I tried the metal case once (and still have it in my drawer) -- it was very beautiful and elegant, but was awful to carry in a trousers pocket. Something that size in your pocket really should be slightly soft and flexible, just for comfort. Again, someone with a different build, or who carries his wallet in a coat pocket, might really like this. And definitely, this and the money clip are the most elegant solutions, visually.
posted by Forktine at 4:17 PM on December 1, 2008

I went through the same search a few months ago, I had it down to the Slimmy, and this. Affordable, relatively well mannered in appearance, and compact in profile.
posted by s01110011 at 4:29 PM on December 1, 2008

I would suggest searching for "Front pocket wallets". I'm all about this style, myself. It is essentially a money clip, a place to hold cards, and some have a small pocket for change.

I don't think they quite make my current wallet anymore, but take a look at this page from Fossil. I'm a big fan of the magnetic ones that are listed at the bottom. Instead of a spring-loaded clip, the piece to hold cash in place is magnetized, but it's only one-sided so that your credit cards aren't ruined.

I think they're reasonably priced and have a nice look to them.
posted by dnesan at 5:41 PM on December 1, 2008

http://www.paulsmith.co.uk/wallets-232/category.html are nice
posted by Zambrano at 6:20 PM on December 1, 2008

Here is the POCKETWALLET by Hard Graft (you'll have to click on the "POCKETWALLET" link to see it). I've been lusting after this for months.
posted by wherever, whatever at 8:01 PM on December 1, 2008

I am in love with my db clay wallet. It's not super-thin, but it's thinner than most guy wallets -- the design is very tight, no wasted material like cheaper wallets. And it's extremely stylish.
posted by paultopia at 10:30 PM on December 1, 2008

Those are really cool, paultopia.
posted by wherever, whatever at 11:30 PM on December 1, 2008

güs makes some nice-looking thin leather wallets, though probably at the expensive end of wallet-landia.
posted by that girl at 5:59 AM on December 2, 2008

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