Unpacking the belt bag, high fashion’s latest fad

Daisy Scott /
Nov 14, 2017 / Style

Let’s talk about bum bags.

You wear them round your waist. At least one of your parents had one for holidays. Traditionally, they come out just before festival season, so that you can fill them glitter, condoms and pills. And now, along with the other ’90s trends that have been given a second life in our modern times (chokers, lip gloss, bucket hats, etc) the bum bag is being embraced by the high fashion world with aplomb. Which begs the question: why?

The bum bag has been aptly renamed to sound a bit trendier. The ‘Belt Bag’, as it will henceforth be known, can appear in many different forms and under a variety of different price tags, depending on where you’re looking. Gucci have been the pioneers of the bum bag revolution over the past couple of years, with their loud, playful take. They have a number of belt bag versions of their best-selling handbags, all of which (obviously) come at the same price.

For instance, the GG Marmont has been turned into a belt-bag, which you can buy for a small total of £765. Similarly, the GG Marmont animal stud leather belt bag makes a welcome addition to anyone’s style repertoire, coming in at around £1,210. ‘But surely nobody is buying them!’ we hear you shout. Wrong. Almost every single version having sold out. Elsewhere, you can spend a mere £2,620 on a Chanel Waist Bag.

They’re not the only culprits, either. There’s the classic take erom Alexander Wang (including original synonymous chunky zips) and the feminine special from Emporio Armani. Just in case you thought that you’d seen it all, there’s the limited edition faux fur waist bag, designed by Puma X Fenty.

One of the strangest versions of the belt bag comes from Building Block. The set of two leather pouches come together to hang either across the body, or draped like a strange, impractical curtain. Although the original design for the belt bag was to simplify life (Disneyworld passes, guys), this looks like it was designed purely to stress people out.

I mean, it does have its positives. Unlike backpacks, the belt bag doesn’t give you back pain – and unlike the side-bag, it also doesn’t slide off your shoulder every ten seconds. It might not hold as much in it, but maybe that’s the point. We’re sure we’re not the only ones guilty of packing a small suitcase every time we leave the house for a night out. With the belt bag, it’s essentials only.

And maybe the joke is on us. Perhaps we’re out of touch. But, after taking everything in, if that’s true then we happily declare ourselves naff and old news. Thanks, belt bag, but you’re not a contraption we’ll be taking to any time soon.

Join our club.

Words by Daisy Scott

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