Bag Of Holding
March 16, 2010 8:40 AM   Subscribe

I Need A New Wallet: My nylon army surplus wallet is finally falling apart and I'd like a grown up wallet to keep my cards in. Caveats: Must be slim enough not to bulge in pants, stylish enough to be taken out in daylight, and practically indestructible.

I'm a fan of art-print wallets like the kind Giant Robot used to make, but those just tore apart after a few months of use. I'd like to spend less than 30 it.
posted by The Whelk to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (36 answers total) 28 users marked this as a favorite
I love the stuff made by Duluth Trading. Can't speak specifically to the wallets but other items I've purchased from them definitely are as promised.
posted by agatha_magatha at 8:45 AM on March 16, 2010

The All-Ett seems built for you
posted by rmless at 8:46 AM on March 16, 2010 [5 favorites]

I can highly recommend the Umbra Card Case. Definitely indestructible (metal rules) and always seems to get admiring questions. There is a larger wallet size if you carry other things but I found the card size perfect for me.
posted by pixlboi at 8:49 AM on March 16, 2010 [1 favorite]

+1 for All-Ett. I've got one in my pocket right now. Shows very little wear even after two or three years. The lack of pockets and stuff takes a bit of getting used to, but my back sure appreciates me not sitting on a big lump on my right side.
posted by bonehead at 8:50 AM on March 16, 2010

I'm very fond of my Slimmy, which keeps the minimal card-set I carry and a bit of cash, while staying non-bulgy in my front pocket.
posted by Tomorrowful at 8:52 AM on March 16, 2010

I've got a Duluth Trading Firehose wallet, it's tough as all get-out.
posted by tommasz at 8:53 AM on March 16, 2010

I have a Slimmy, as well, and I can't recommend it enough. It's super-great.
posted by ged at 9:00 AM on March 16, 2010

I have an All-Ett and it is thin but I don't really think it's indestructible. Mine certainly looks sad after about a year. There are loose threads everywhere, a ripped corner, and random creases. I figure it will be dead in a couple of months.
posted by smackfu at 9:03 AM on March 16, 2010

I have an All-Ett. My credit cards fall out of the slots. I think they expect people to stuff the pockets full, but I only have one or two in each. I'm thinking about getting a Big Skinny wallet instead, which has rubber-lined pockets to prevent such things from happening. Shame about the dumb name, though.
posted by zsazsa at 9:03 AM on March 16, 2010 [1 favorite]

I made a couple of these a while back and gave them as gifts. Requires an old keyboard and dash of nerdery.
posted by iamkimiam at 9:06 AM on March 16, 2010 [1 favorite]

I hear nothing but good about the Taxi Wallet (link goes to "home of the original" site but they're also available via Amazon and other sources). The "Imagery" link displays a variety of cool decorated wallets (I'm saving up my pennies for either the Nancy Drew or Medusa).
posted by Kat Allison at 9:13 AM on March 16, 2010

I have a Big Skinny, and once you get past the stupid name (and remove the stupid rubber logo thingy), they are awesome. I recommend the extra large version, so that it can hold all funny money properly, too!
posted by Grither at 9:13 AM on March 16, 2010

My All-Ett is fantastic at being skinny and light, but it ain't pretty. It looks like a piece of crap, to be honest. :-)
posted by callmejay at 9:14 AM on March 16, 2010

Nthing the Slimmy. Had it for atleast three or four years and it still looks and functions perfectly. Get it. You won't be disappointed.
posted by lakerk at 9:25 AM on March 16, 2010

How about a Jimi?
posted by greekphilosophy at 9:27 AM on March 16, 2010

You want a Jimi. I've had one for years and it does not wear out.
posted by loosemouth at 9:29 AM on March 16, 2010

Years ago I went to a very small wallet that fit easily in the front pocket. Not sitting on it all day tends to reduce wear and tear, plus being in your front pocket makes it virtually pick-pocket proof. I'll never go back to carrying my wallet in a rear pocket. I think I picked up mine at a Wilson's Outlet store for about $20, about 10 years ago.
posted by COD at 9:40 AM on March 16, 2010

I have a Duluth Trading leather wallet and it gets better looking each year. And they don't make stuff to fall apart.
posted by jdfan at 9:46 AM on March 16, 2010

what about the slim clip? It holds 6-8 cards, plus a fair amount of paper money on the other side, and it costs all of 6 bucks. I've been using mine for 6 months, and had no problems yet. Yes, it's one of those "as seen on tv" products, but in this case I have no qualms recommending it despite that.

Prior to the slim clip, I made my own tyvek wallets, similar to this.
posted by namewithoutwords at 9:50 AM on March 16, 2010

Paper Wallet.
posted by 517 at 9:57 AM on March 16, 2010

Gotta add a dissenting opinion on the Jimi. Had one and liked it, but mine only lasted about a year before the plastic hinge came apart. Maybe I'm hard on wallets. I'm currently using the Umbra card wallet linked upthread and a money clip. Happy with the wallet, the money clip not so much.

Both of these have a hard upper limit on the amount of cards you can carry (The Umbra will fit a few more than the Jimi). You can't stuff them full and expect them to expand like a fabric or leather wallet. I see this as a desirable feature, but it's something to keep in mind if you tend to carry a lot of cards.
posted by zen_spider at 10:03 AM on March 16, 2010

Stainless steel wallet
posted by greta simone at 10:09 AM on March 16, 2010

Another recommendation for All-Ett. The leather versions look more "grown up" than the all-nylon ones and are still so slim they can mail them to you in an envelope.
posted by zombiedance at 10:15 AM on March 16, 2010

I'm going to recommend the Mighty Wallet. It's made of Tyvek, which is the same stuff they make express mail envelopes out of, and it's nearly indestructible (I've had mine for about six months, and while it has definitely worn a bit, the wear is mostly just cosmetic, not structural).

Slim? It's basically just paper in terms of thickness, so it only ends up as big as whatever you put in it.

Stylish? Well, I don't know what your definition of stylish is, but there are dozens of different designs, and my girlfriend and I, who both have one, have both been complimented on them many times (lots of people think they're cool, though they assume that I've made mine since I got the design that actually looks like an express mail envelope).

Cheap? $15. Works for me.

On preview: ninja'd, but I'll add my +1.
posted by stufflebean at 10:34 AM on March 16, 2010

I have a Waterfield Designs wallet. They cost USD19. I don't know about practically indestructible, but their products (especially the bags) are better put together than any other stitched items I've owned.
posted by galaksit at 10:53 AM on March 16, 2010

I got the boy one of these for Christmas, and he's a convert. It's definitely indestructible. Bulge in pants is negligible, but probably more noticeable than with a teeny tiny wallet.
posted by charmedimsure at 11:20 AM on March 16, 2010

You're in SF right now, right? Go to Chinatown and buy a really nice classic mens' trifold leather wallet for cheap at one of those little touristy stores with the luggage out front. It's basic; it's timeless - there's a reason it's classic. I have bought them (at different, equally discount places) for various boyfriends and for my son and I vote heavily in favor of the nontrendy, nonexciting, basic leather wallet.
posted by mygothlaundry at 11:45 AM on March 16, 2010

Another vote for the Mighty Wallet. Plus people often comment on it when it take it out.

The wallet, that is.
posted by wittgenstein at 12:00 PM on March 16, 2010

.... when "I" take it out.
posted by wittgenstein at 12:17 PM on March 16, 2010

Two caveats about the all-ett: I've used it for some time and it's stayed pretty intact. However:

1. It's thin enough (and sharp enough, if that's the right word?) that it seems to wear through a pair of jeans a little faster than leather would. Since I've had it, a few pairs of jeans have gotten wallet holes.
2. It holds the cards loosely, so you can pretty easily let a few slip to the ground when you open it.

YMMV obviously.
posted by condour75 at 1:53 PM on March 16, 2010

I bought a All-Ett and the cards fell out.
I bought a Big Skinny and it looked like crap after a year.
I then bought a leather wallet at Target that was the thinnest one they have, and have had it for a few years, and it still looks fine.

My girlfriend has a Jimi and likes it, but it's a little plastic case you keep in your front pocket, not a traditional wallet.
posted by andrewzipp at 1:57 PM on March 16, 2010

So I saw 517's link to the paper wallet and thought, "That is the perfect activity to do while home sick from work" and so I made one out of some Kraft paper I have lying around. When I was finished I was pretty pleased, but overall the dimensions aren't exactly what I want, and I'm a bit worried about the durability. I spent a little while thinking, "What other material could I make this out of?" but eventually gave up.

I came back to this thread to find not one, not two, but three people (at last count) promoting the Mighty Wallet, which is more or less the paper wallet made out of Tyvek. I have already ordered two - one for me and one for a friend.

What I'm trying to say is that I'm taking some of these links very seriously, and I'm not even the asker.
posted by komara at 1:57 PM on March 16, 2010

The Coach "water buffalo double billfold" looks like the one I have (though I don't know if I have an old discontinued model or that exact one.) I've had it for nearly 15 years, and it looks like it's going to last another 15. Love it.
posted by ctmf at 5:40 PM on March 16, 2010

I've got one of these sailcloth wallets, and one of these leather ones, and I love 'em both. These guys used to make messenger-bag-material wallets, which were great, but I dunno about their canvas ones.
posted by box at 5:43 PM on March 16, 2010

This far in the thread and nobody's mentioned the legendary Dopp Regatta 88?
posted by chalbe at 6:49 AM on March 17, 2010

Response by poster: I ended up getting a (now, after taxes and inflation cheap) leather bifold at the Van Huesen factory outlet in San Fransisco!
posted by The Whelk at 11:34 PM on October 31, 2010

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