Tactical Man Bag
Within the last year, the crossbody bag has become the signature accessory of fashion-forward dudes across the globe. Whether it’s a minimalist hip bag from A.P.C. or a lavish fanny pack from Prada, these bags have been welcomed into the ever-wilder world of modern menswear with open arms (or, perhaps more accurately, one open shoulder). Finally, the term “man bag” is no longer a dirty word. Couple this trend with the ultra-utilitarian vibe that has also been dominating men’s fashion and you get the tactical-looking “Chest Rig” bag from the booming label Alyx. Having already received co-signs from the likes of Kanye West and A$AP Rocky (both longtime friends of Alyx’s designer/owner Matthew Williams), the bag always sells out quickly. Lucky, then, that a grip of new colors have quietly hit Alyx’s own online store.
If now is the first time you’re seeing this type of strappy military-inspired bag, take a minute to soak it in and wrap your head around it…and then get ready to see a lot more of this style in the upcoming seasons. Last month, at Paris Fashion Week, it became clear that Williams and Alyx, alongside Kim Jones at Dior and Virgil Abloh at Louis Vuitton, are all plotting the future of menswear. And that future looks will include plenty of experimental tailoring, utilitarian aesthetics, and bulky sneakers. Oh, and man bags—lots and lots of man bags.
While all three brands sent new men’s bags down the runway, this one from Alyx has been red-hot since as early as last year. Of course, wearing a is-it-a-harness-or-a-bag like Alyx’s “Chest Rig” isn’t for everyone. It is, if nothing else, an advanced style move. But if you’re someone who has mastered the art of the basic crossbody bag and are looking to up the ante, this Alyx bag is the way to go. It’s made from a technical nylon fabric with contrast cordura details and features adjustable cordura straps and a mesh back panel. Which is to say it delivers fashion and function in equal measure. Plus, it makes anyone who wears it look like ultra-stylish member of a SWAT team.
That a scrappy startup label is generating hype and sales with its accessories isn’t as surprising as it seems. Luxury labels have long relied on bags and accessories as their go-to moneymakers, and Alyx’s hottest and most visible products are its pricey Italian-made bags and vests. But Alyx is independently owned by Williams and his business partner, while Dior and Louis Vuitton, just like countless other in-demand brands, are owned by the luxury conglomerates like LVMH and Kering. Think of it as a small label dipping into big fashion’s playbook. And considering the high-profile wearers of this particular man bag, and the fact that the bag is almost always sold out, the move seems to be paying off for Williams.
$571, buy now via Alyx.