Recommend me a man bag.
April 16, 2008 11:40 PM   Subscribe

ManBagFilter: Looking for recommendations for a canvas/nylon messenger bag which is functional, fashionable and wont blow the bank.

I'm looking for something similar to these bags. I like the style, but it is pushing the top of my price range and they don't appear to ship out of the US.

I'm after something fairly simple, well constructed, just a couple of interior pockets and easy to keep clean. A vendor who offers international shipping would be a bonus too! (to NZ).
posted by chrisbucks to Clothing, Beauty, & Fashion (21 answers total) 23 users marked this as a favorite
You could try Crumpler. The website is a bit annoying to use but according to the Store Finder they have a number of outlets in New Zealand too, so hopefully you could go and have a look at them and make sure they are what you're looking for and within your budget. I have one and I love it.
posted by awfurby at 12:11 AM on April 17, 2008

What about Manhattan Portage? Broad selection of messenger bags, ships internationally...a wee bit less expensive than Jack Spade.
posted by Asherah at 12:24 AM on April 17, 2008

Seconding Crumpler. Comfortable, stylish, very well constructed, and you can even order your own custom designs.
posted by tomble at 12:30 AM on April 17, 2008

I carry one of these. I don't know that MEC ships out of country and it's a co-op anyway but I'm thinking that for simple durable bags you might find a similar vendor of hiking/camping/climbing/outdoorishnessage gear in your part of the world I know there's REI in the US and I can't imagine that a country that's anything like what I imagine NZ to be like wouldn't be well serviced by some similar outfit.
posted by mce at 12:35 AM on April 17, 2008

Duluth Trading Company carries some very well-crafted items, and the customer service is superb. I have one of the smaller bags, the Postmaster's Tote might be more what you want. Sorry, I haven't ordered from another country, so no info on that.
posted by dawson at 12:49 AM on April 17, 2008 [1 favorite]

I have a Tom Bihn bag that I like a lot. I don't know if they have exactly what you're looking for, but they do ship internationally.
posted by disaster77 at 1:09 AM on April 17, 2008

I just purchased a really wonderful messenger bag from Urban Outfitters, but alas, it's no longer on the website (however it might be in the stores). Whilst browsing, I came across this bag and it looks to be somewhat you might be in the market for.
posted by Derek at 2:12 AM on April 17, 2008

Response by poster: Lack of international ordering isn't so much of a problem since I've got family and friends in the states who can re-mail for me. The urbanoutfitters one is close to what I'd like, although it looks like something that I had in college, but definitely interested by the price!

Trying to avoid things with clips and other stuff since they can be annoying, I heard of a place which makes bags with the same velcro top as the jakespade ones, but they make them out of recycled truck canvas covers, anyone know of where to get those?
posted by chrisbucks at 2:51 AM on April 17, 2008

Timbuk2 makes a wide variety of bags. You can even customize one step by step to suit your tastes.
posted by aheckler at 3:41 AM on April 17, 2008

I'd also recommend Crumpler. Have a look at the Seedy Three if they still make it. The bags are almost indestructible - mine has had daily use for 5 years and still looks like new.
posted by tnai at 4:14 AM on April 17, 2008

If you don't bike, you're looking for a postman bag (as in your picture.) Google will yield lots and lots of results.

If you do, you don't want one of those. At all. They rest on you in weird places and just aren't comfortable.

Here are some reviews from fixedgeargallery that will give you the ups and downs of a lot of manufacturers of "real" messenger bags. Most of these will last you the rest of your life, and all of them have a lot of color options.

I have one of these, and I absolutely can not say enough good things about it. If you ever plan on biking across town with a full case of beer on your back, this is the bag you want. Their larger one will give you the ability to transport a gaggle of children. Literally. I've seen it.
posted by onedarkride at 5:03 AM on April 17, 2008

Have you checked etsy? Lots of really great, quality, handmade products on there. If you don't see something you like, you could even ask someone to make a custom bag for you.
posted by LolaGeek at 5:32 AM on April 17, 2008

Seconding above suggestion by Asherah (above)...Manhattan Portage make great bags. The "messenger bags" are have been used by years by all bike messengers in NYC and are strong, hold up to lots of wear and tear, and the place where the strap meets the bag is strongly attached together. Well worth the money.
posted by blast at 5:54 AM on April 17, 2008 last post was a bit of a mess...sorry....I want to second the above suggestion by Asherah.....Manhattan Portage make great bags and the "Messenger Bags" for years have been used by NYC Bike Messengers and are well made, hold up to lots of wear and tear, and the place where the strap meets the bag is strongly attached together. Well worth the money.
posted by blast at 6:05 AM on April 17, 2008

I kind of like this one. Or this one?
posted by Stewriffic at 6:38 AM on April 17, 2008

A Bailey Works bag is a great investment. (Pick "celery" and "medium" at that link to get a bag about the size and the color of the one you were looking at.) It is not quite as pretty with the lines as your pick, but it is a hair cheaper, made in a small shop, and indestructible. I have four of their bags including a currier bag that has been in daily use for about 12 years and despite heavy abuse it still looks like new.

They also seem to have some kind of cult factor, every month or so I get approached by someone remarking on it. They are always polite and excited and say something like "is that a Bailey Bag, oooh, nice!" and then they show me theirs.
posted by quarterframer at 6:48 AM on April 17, 2008

Best answer: I heard of a place which makes bags with the same velcro top as the jakespade ones, but they make them out of recycled truck canvas covers, anyone know of where to get those?

You may be thinking of Freitag.
posted by dubold at 7:42 AM on April 17, 2008 [1 favorite]

Chrome makes beefy messenger bags; I've been commuting with books for 3 years with mine daily and love 'em. Comfy, dry, not too pricey.

If I were to buy again, I may get a custom bag from ReLoad, but that's because bags are something I love and use daily.
posted by craven_morhead at 9:40 AM on April 17, 2008

Seconding aheckler's recommendation for Timbuk2. They're not used by real bike messengers anymore, but they're still sturdy and more waterproof than most "civilian" bags. They come in lots of sizes from way-too-small to ridiculously big.

I used one everyday for five years lugging books and gear around, including a few times where I ridiculously overloaded it (30+ pounds). There haven't been any stitching failures of any kind. I would not recommend them for carrying heavy things though; the design is poorly made to carry weight.

They also appear to be massively overproduced. I see them all the time for 40% off at the local sports discounter, and I've seen them on Steep and Cheap for over 60% off, if you can stand the color combination.
posted by meowzilla at 9:47 AM on April 17, 2008

I'm thirding the chrome bags for the best bags ever. However, I'm pretty sure they don't match the specs of the murse your looking for. They are extremely comfortable and I even use one of the large ones for grocery shopping.
posted by Hitoshura at 1:54 PM on April 17, 2008

The Acme Made "Clyde" bag is the best I've had or tried.
posted by nicwolff at 3:39 PM on April 17, 2008

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