Top 3 Reasons the Wallet is Important to Fashion

by Mark Ward January 08, 2017

Top 3 Reasons the Wallet is Important to Fashion

1. Necessity Requires the Wallet

    Unlike bracelets, cufflinks, ties, rings, or even watches, wallets are a necessity.  Many like to call it an accessory, but accessories are optional.  They can be left at home if desired.  Wallet’s cannot. Want to argue that? Then you’ll have a long list of reasons why it’s not practical to NOT carry a wallet…at least a minimalist or unique wallet, due to the complete lack of the digital takeover…maybe someday soon, but I doubt it.

    Because it’s a necessity, the mere presence of a wallet means it has become a victim of, or is granted the purview of, fashion oversight.  To this point then, wallets have gained tremendous attention over the year. As a “required accessory”, it contributes to the overall style of the person carrying it.  Again, many will argue that because the wallet is not seen, since it’s carried in a person’s pocket it has less relevance than a scarf, pocket square or macelete (a man’s bracelet?).  No matter, the psychology of wallets demonstrates that it is THE power accessory since it carries the wealth of the individual.  It’s a status symbol, and as such, at the most appropriate and most noticeable time, it is pulled out for everyone to see.

    2. Fashion Summons the Masses

      Since we’ve established the necessity of the wallet on a person and since it contributes to the style of the person carrying it, AND by virtue of these things it has gained attention from the fashion world, it then must become a fashion focus of the masses. In The New York Times, Stephanie Winston Wolkoff, Lincoln Center's first director of fashion, stated what sounds like the industry's new official consciousness transformation mantra: "Fashion, ultimately, is for the masses. The more that we can open it up to the people who, before, were only seeing it on television, or seeing it in the magazines, the more it becomes real life to them. Exclusivity was something we want to get away from.” This is not hard to believe, as a whole industry has been built around immediately copying the fashions of top designers, and providing them to the masses at affordable prices. Fashion houses don’t want to leave that easy money on the table.

      Unique wallets for men are no different.  We’ve seen a resurgence of cool mens wallet fashion brands like Coach, Burberry, Hugo Boss, Tommy Hilfiger, Gucci and underground brands like Goyard.  Each coming out with their own take on the typical styles, with a brand identifier, to make the pull of a wallet from the pocket blend with the person’s style. This harmonizes with other components and thus becomes noticeable and fashionable.

      3. Fashion Dictates Harmony

        We’re seeing growing importance in men’s fashion. As luxury fashion has slowed and even started to decline, the large fashion houses have begun to invest heavily in the resurgence of men’s fashion and style.  Sure, there were fits and starts like those seen in New York’s Soho, but the overall growth of #menswear has increased.  The global market for mens designer clothing (not what most people purchase, but designer driven collections) is projected to hit $33 billion in 2020.  that would be up 14% from the $24 billion in 2015.  That’s a big boost, especially since the overall personal luxury fashion goods market is expected to flatline, or see only marginal, low single digit growth.

        So whereas #menswear as a social trend might have died, it sparked a resurgence in mens non-professional, clothing area.  Purchasing a good suit for work was always a “thing”, but putting that much effort into casual wear was not, at least when it came to coordinating the color, texture, tactile and pattern aspects.  These items create the harmony in the fashion, style and design a man chooses to wear.  Along those lines, wallets fall in with the ability to pair a wallet with an activity.  A nice Goyard wallet might be appropriate for the business casual, but a recycled, vintage tie wallet from Narwhal Co. might be the best pairing for a casual stroll down the local shopping district or fun night on the town.

        Once ideas are disseminated, then fashion can make a statement.  Once a fashion statement has been adopted, then a trend is created.  We live in a time where individuals establish their own statement, mixing and matching trends to establish their own style.  These combinations, of course, are endless but the adventure is exhilarating, and the wallet will always be along for the ride.


        Mark Ward
        Mark Ward

        Author




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