All Hail the Belt Bag
I grew up squarely in the 80's, a decade of truly great music but truly questionable fashion, when "more is more" was the pervasive mentality for everything from sock layering to the height of your bangs. Despite some seriously cringe-worthy trends, it's always with a feeling of deep nostalgia and affection that I look upon what I consider my own personal Wonder Years, so you can imagine my delight at witnessing the recent revival of some of that era's most pervasive looks: exaggerated shoulders, puffed sleeves, tapered trousers, neon, spandex, power suits. But the resurgence of one particular item has me doing mental cartwheels, and that my friends is the mighty belt bag.
Belt bags, fanny packs, bum bags, hip sacks...call them what you will but I cannot even begin to tell you how much of a fixture these were in my heyday. You would rarely find me in public without one, which probably goes a long way toward explaining my status as a grade-school mega-nerd, but how else could I keep my spy notebook and My Little Pony figurines close at hand?? Know your essentials, people. Anyway, my fondness for belt bags has never once waned in the years since I started sporting them jauntily atop my track shorts, and subsequently I've amassed quite the collection. As far as I'm concerned it's the ideal accessory...stylish, versatile, and leaves you gloriously hands-free. There's never a need to adjust a strap, no fear of accidentally leaving it behind, it's built-in belly camouflage, and even if you're sitting on a barstool there's a place to hang your bag because guess what, that place is YOUR OWN MIDSECTION.
If it's not already obvious, my love for these things transcends time & fads and I've worn them pretty much non-stop regardless of whether it was considered fashionable or not. So the fact that they were all over the runways this past year was a most welcome sight not only because I finally felt vindicated in my sometimes unpopular choice of accessory, but because I knew this meant they were going to be everywhere in no time. And everywhere they are:
LOOK HOW FABULOUS. The best part of this belt bag renaissance is that it has afforded me the chance to splurge for two new additions to my arsenal: a lovely emerald green, velvet Prada and a classic Gucci suede. And before you clutch your pearls at my presumed extravagance let me just say, I got them for a mere fraction of the retail price. More on that in another post. In the meantime, behold:
Ain't they bee-yoo-tee-ful? You can remove the belt on both to use as clutches, but the Prada also came with a gold chain for use as a cross-body. I know, just when you think it can't get better. See:
Needless to say, my excitement (as is usual when it comes to matters of fashion) is irrational and disproportionate, but such is the effect belt bags have on this 80's gal at heart.
If you're as much of a fan as I am, now's the time to strike. You'll currently find them everywhere from luxury boutiques to fast fashion retailers alike, so I've rounded up my favorites on all sides of the price-point spectrum for your browsing pleasure - and if browsing leads to something more akin to coveting, just click to purchase ;) Enjoy, and all hail the belt bag.