The Best Men’s Leather Briefcase Of 2019?

As we recently discussed in our briefcase rundown, the right briefcase/messenger bag is definitely a worthwhile investment for every man to make. We recently we got our hands on one from Carl Friedrik to test out; is this the best men’s leather briefcase of 2019?

As a bonus, our readers can get $50 off and Free Shipping to the US with code: AWX10

Shop this briefcase here: Carl Friedrik Briefcase

 

 

Design & Materials

The briefcase comes in a few different colors but we tested the chocolate brown color. The color was beautiful and very rich-looking. The construction and leather quality was very good and the overall design aesthetic was just what we like, clean and sharp with minimal branding. The bag also has a good amount of structure, which we really liked.

 

Strap and Interior Features

The bag has an all-leather strap (a nice bonus) and really cleverly-integrated shoulder strap set up with attachment hoops built into the handle attachments. The bag features a nice cloth interior in contrasting grey with a bunch of functional pockets.

 

Cons

Metal Feet – Not our favorite feature as they can tend to scratch floors or tables depending on how careful you are with them.

Loose Interior Cloth – The interior padding is pretty minimal but it has enough structure to keep everything safe and secure. We weren’t huge fans of the looseness of the interior fabric though.

 

Price & Value

This bag is fairly pricey at $500 but overall we really loved the quality and design and felt that it was definitely a good overall value and for a nice briefcase. There is quite a bit of competition at this price range and felt that if the bag was slightly less expensive it would be a slam dunk, but nonetheless, it’s still a great bag that is fairly priced.

As a bonus, our readers can get $50 off and Free Shipping to the US with code: AWX10

Shop this briefcase here: Carl Friedrik Briefcase

Top Men’s Briefcases / Messenger Bags For 2019

A stylish and functional bag is one of the most important accessories a man can own and we thought it was high time we updated our previous picks. We love a good backpack of course, but no matter what type of field you work in, carrying your goods in something sharp and professional is important. You’re better than that old, falling-apart school bag.

In this video, we’re running down a batch of the latest and greatest new men’s briefcases and messenger bags for 2019!

 

Incase – $70

We loved the clean, simple design for those looking for a budget-friendly option. It features a clean, no-frills design and is made from rugged canvas with plenty of padding to protect your goods.  It also comes with a shoulder strap for extra flexibility.

 

Italic – $250

Another bag with a clean, minimal aesthetic, the Italic bag is a great leather option. It features really nice pebbled leather that feels luxurious, especially for its affordable price point. This bag also comes with a removable shoulder strap (in nylon) and an interior padded laptop compartment. The metal feet on the underside were the real drawback as they can sometimes cause damage if you aren’t careful.

 

Stuart & Lau – $325

This bag features a nice nylon base with leather accents and matte hardware giving it a very sharp design aesthetic.  While not all leather, it would be an excellent option for those of you who don’t work in super formal environments.  It has nice details with a ton of functional interior pockets and a nice-looking leather shoulder strap with matching hardware. Overall we really liked this bag and felt it was well worth the price given its excellent design and functionality. It comes in multiple colors too.

 

Bellroy – $590

Dorian is a big fan of their phone cases so we were excited to see one of their briefcases as well.  The Bellroy features really nice leather and a lot of structure, which we really like.  It has a clean, functional design and some nice touches with its interior contrasting color and nicely integrated eyelets for the shoulder straps.  Two things we weren’t in love with were the leather accented nylon shoulder strap and a little bit of excess branding.  It’s on the expensive side but we felt like it was definitely worth the investment for those looking for a modern, structured briefcase.

 

This Is Ground – $649

We’ve featured some of their products before and we’re definitely fans of their high-quality construction and great leather.  This bag is on the slim side so it’s definitely for the guy who carries less stuff.  It’s got a great minimal design and an exterior pocket for extra storage as well.  The interior is very cool and it features a bunch of different organizational compartments for your extra goods and features an interior magnet set up that works with their innovative mod products.  It’s definitely on the expensive side but well worth the price for its quality.

 

Frank Clegg – $900

Dorian’s bag mentioned in the video, very high-quality leather and handmade construction.  An investment bag that will last you a lifetime.

 

Top 5 Men’s Fall Essentials 2017

Since Fall is upon us, I wanted to do an update and supplement to my Men’s Fall & Winter Essentials series. So don’t think of this as a replacement for the series, think of it as a next-tier type of video and article. Enjoy!
 

1 & 2. Denim Jacket + Chino Pants

My first pick for the season is a denim jacket. It’s perfect for this time of year and works equally well during Springtime, too. Not only does it look good on every body type, but you can layer the heck out of them depending on how cool or warm the weather is. I recommend my go-to styling formula for denim jackets: wear with a t-shirt or crewneck sweater and a pair of chinos and boots.

My second choice are olive, tan and burgandy chino pants. Some of my favorite colors for the season are olive green, brown, and burgundy, which you can easily wear with your other casual jackets and sportcoats.

Outfit Details & Notes

$230 – Allsaints denim jacket – One of my favorite denim jackets currently available. I love the lighter wash and distressed touches and the slim fit is incredibly flattering, which is really hard to find in denim jackets.
$20 – Topman striped t-shirt
$68 – J.Crew slim-fit stretch chino pant in green and brown (click here for their straight leg chinos) – I’m shocked at how spot on the fits and material are. The color choices and friendly price have me stocking up on a handful of these for Dorian this Fall (Seriously, I’ve already added the green and brown ones to his closet!).
$128 – Brooks Brothers suede belt in brown
$295 – Allen Edmonds plain-toe chukka boots
$318 – John Varvatos sunglasses
$5 – Perlon Watch Strap

Alternate Denim Jacket & Chinos

$70 – Levi’s trucker jacket – You can never go wrong with the brand’s iconic denim jacket.
$225 – Rag & Bone slim fit chinos – I’m a huge fan of their chinos because they use a stiffer fabric that’s lays really nicely along the ankles and is super flattering on all shapes and sizes, especially if you’re a hefty fella.

3 & 4. Patterned Sweater & Boots

My third Fall Essential is a patterned sweater. Hopefully, you’ve already got the basic, plain sweaters, so now it’s time to add one that has a subtle pattern because it’s an easy way to add a visually interesting element to your outfits. Also, a pattern helps draw attention away from the torso which is especially beneficial if you’re a slim or husky guy.

My fourth Fall Essential is a pair of boots. You can go with leather or suede, dress or casual boots, but for me, I’m all about the taupe suede boots featured below. These are my hands-down favorite for the season because the color is the perfect dark brownish-grey so they can be used in place of brown or black boots.

Outfit Details & Notes

$100 – Topman acid wash bomber jacket
$148 – Brooks Brothers cotton cashmere birds-eye sweater – The softness, color and subtle pattern instantly caught my eye. No matter your shape or size, this sweater is flattering on everyone. They run slightly larger, so you should size down for the best fit possible.
$10 – Topman slim fit t-shirt in white
$118 – Banana Republic slim fit jeans
$350 – Allen Edmonds suede boots in dark taupe
$98 – Brooks Brothers silver buckle leather belt in brown 
$125 – Ray-Ban black sunglasses
$25 – Brown Leather Watch Strap

Alternate Patterned Sweater & Boots

$89 – Banana Republic wool birdseye sweater – I’m so impressed with not only the fit, but by the superior wool you can get for under $100. The brand sourced the wool from Zegna’s factory, which is always high quality and can easily set you back $600+.
$178 – Banana Republic suede work boot

5. Chambray Shirt

My final pick for the season is a chambray shirt. It looks great on its own or layered underneath a cardigan or jacket. I recommend wearing yours with chinos or wool trousers.

Outfit Details & Notes

$55 – Topman chambray shirt – I’m a huge fan of the lighter wash, but it’s worth mentioning that this shirt runs pretty slim, so if you’re a bigger guy, see my alternate choice below.
$68 – J.Crew slim-fit stretch chino pants in green and brown (click here for straight leg chino)
$98 – Brooks Brothers silver buckle leather belt in brown
$179 – Johnston & Murphy chukka boots in mahogany 
$625 – This Is Ground briefcase
$318 – John Varvatos sunglasses
$25 – Brown Leather Watch Strap

Alternate Chambray Shirt

$55 – The Tie Bar chambray shirt – If you don’t want a super slim fit and/or you’re a larger man, then get this shirt instead.

 

Thanks for reading!

EDC #4 – The Grounded Man

In this episode of the Everyday Carry series, I invited entrepreneur Mike Macadan, the founder of ThisIsGround, to join me to discuss his EDC and how he goes about his workday creating all the amazing products for his company. Hope you enjoy!

 

Have questions or comments?

Join us in the comments section of the video above.

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16 Accessories Every Man Needs

These are, to me, the 16 accessories every guy needs to own, regardless of your age, occupation, and lifestyle. Some of these items you may not wear often, but there will be an occasion, as a grown man, when you will need them and you’ll be thankful that you thought far enough ahead to take care of them before it’s too late and you’re scrambling at the last minute. I’ve also included my favorites for each of these items below. But these points below are just skimming the surface compared to the much more through Men’s Essential Accessories Series I did recently.

Have questions? Curious what others think?

Join us in the comments section of the video above.

16. White Pocket Square

Like I’ve mentioned before, every man should have at least a grey suit. Even if you only wear it once every year, you’re going to need a suit. Along with that, looking well dressed is always about the details and a white pocket square is an easily overlooked item that really does make a big impact and it’ll only set you back a couple of bucks.

White Pocket Square Ashley Weston

$175 – Tom Ford Solid Classic Silk Pocket Square
$60 – Boss Solid Silk Pocket Square
$10 – The Tie Bar Solid White Cotton Pocket Square

15. Silver Tie Bar

This is another overlooked item. I talked about this in my article about the 12 Things Men Wear That Women Love, but a tie bar is something that adds that special touch to your outfit. It’s also so cheap to own so order it once and you’ll never think about it again.

Silver Tie Bar Ashley Weston$15 – The Tie Bar Silver Shot Tie Bar
$70 – J. Crew Sterling-Silver Tie Clip 

14. Solid Black and Navy Tie

These two ties will work for any suit you have in your closet, making them an absolute must have. Make sure the width of your tie complements your body type.

Black and Navy Tie Ashley Weston

$19 – The Tie Bar Grenafaux Tie (available in black and navy)
$60 – J. Crew American Wool Navy Tie
$60 – J. Crew American Wool Black Tie

13. Dress Socks

Get rid of your white socks. These socks can and should be worn as your everyday socks. If you need heavier duty, thicker socks for your job or because of the weather, there are plenty of companies that offer warmer versions.

Solid or Patterned Dress Socks Ashley Weston

$4 – Uniqlo Argyle Socks
$20 – Brooks Brothers Egyptian Cotton Jersey Knit Crew Socks
$15 – J. Crew Tipped Microstriped Socks

12. Sunglasses

Whether you’re a sunglass man or not, sunglasses are important because they’re going to protect your eyes from the sun, prevent you from squinting, which creates wrinkles around your eyes, and they can add a stylish, cool touch to your outfit. Check out my sunglasses story so you choose the right frames for your face shape.

Sunglasses 1 Ashley Weston 2

$415 – Tom Ford Snowdon Sunglasses
$98 – J. Crew Jack Sunglasses
$95 – Warby Parker Winston Sunglasses 

11. Baseball Hat

We all have those lazy days, myself included, where you just say F it, I’m gonna throw on a hat. When it comes to baseball hats I have very specific opinions about them so I shared some of my recommendations below.

Baseball Cap Ashley Weston

$48 – Gents ‘The Directors’ Baseball Cap
$22 – Flexfit Blank Snapback 2014

10. Black and Brown Oxford or Derby Shoes

Not only do these oxford dress shoes look great with your suit, but they also look nice with chinos, jeans, and trousers when you want to dress up a more casual outfit.

Black and Brown Shoes Ashley Weston

$395 – Allen Edmonds Carlyle Plain-Toe Oxfords
$750 – Prada Plain-Toe Bluchers
$175 – Johnston & Murphy Melton Cap Toe Oxfords

9. Black and Brown Dress Belts

Since you’re going to own dress shoes, you absolutely need to match your leather belt to your shoes.

Black and Brown Dress Belt Ashley Weston

$98 – Brooks Brothers Leather Dress Belt
$98 – Allen Edmonds Poplar Dress Belt
$25 – H&M Leather Belt

8. Weekender Bag

Everyone travels. Whether it’s to some exotic country, or across town, you’ll need to put your clothes in something AND trash bags are not an option. Like every accessory you own, it should not only serve it’s purpose, but look damn good at the same time. I have a whole article about weekender bags you should check out.

Weekender Bag Ashley Weston$965 – Frank Clegg Signature Travel Duffle (in black, chocolate or chesnut)
$800 – Killspencer Weekender 3.0 (in black leather or charcoal grey leather)
$115 – Everlane ‘The Dipped Weekender’ (in black/black, navy/black or reverse denim/black)

7. Dopp Kit

This item goes great with your weekender bag. Again, doesn’t matter if you’re traveling to another city or to the gym, a dopp kitt is essential because it’ll keep your grooming products organized and contained in a respectable manner.

Dopp Kit 1 Ashley Weston 2

$148 – Jack Spade Mason Leather Zipper Top Dopp
$300 – Shinola Travel Kit
$200 – This is Ground Tech Dopp Kit

6. Backpack or Briefcase with Detachable Strap

Depending on what you do for a living, if you live a more casual lifestyle or you’re a student, then a backpack is great. If you are in a more professional environment, a briefcase is best.

Backpack Briefcase Ashley Weston 1

Backpack

$800 – This is Ground Venture Regular Backpack
$210 – Cõte & Ciel Rhine Backpack
$120 – Aer Fit Pack Backpack 

Briefcase

$990 – Frank Clegg Zip-Top Briefcase
$895 – Shinola Slim Briefcase
$325 – Uri Minkoff Pebbled Leather Fulton Briefcase 

5. Casual or Dress Watch

Like the last point, which one you go with will depend on your lifestyle. Whether you’re a watch guy or not, any self-respecting man should own a watch or two.

Casual and Dress Watch Ashley Weston

Casual Watch

$7,000 – Rolex Submariner 114060
$3,400 – Omega Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch
$375 – Orient Diver Mako USA II

Dress Watch

$12,700 – IWC Schaffhausen Portugieser Automatic
$532 – Hamilton Intra-Matic Silver Dial Leather Watch
$195 – Tissot T-Classic Tradition Silver Dial

4. White Low Top Sneakers

Everyone has casual days, and white sneakers look so sharp on every guy regardless of your age or body type. If you’re really scared of wearing white, or think that it doesn’t look right, ease yourself into it with a nice low top lace-up black or navy sneaker.

White Sneakers 2 Ashley Weston

$370 – Acne Studios Adrian White Leather Sneakers
$75 – Adidas Stan Smith Sneakers
$65 – Converse Jack Purcell Classic Low Top

3. Boxer Briefs

All women find boxer briefs, specifically darker colors, so sexy on a man. And all men should be wearing them. Period.

Boxer Brief Ashley Weston

$26 – Exofficio Give-N-Go Boxer Brief
$13 – H&M 3-pack Boxer Shorts
$6 – Uniqlo Supima Cotton Boxer Briefs

2. Black and Brown Casual Leather Belts

Whenever you’re wearing jeans, chinos or shorts, throw on a casual leather belt because it’ll add a visually nice touch to your outfit.

Black and Brown Casual Belts Ashley Weston

$98 – Allen Edmonds Sun River Casual Belt
$295 – Salvatore Ferragamo Reversible Leather Belt 
$18 – H&M Leather Belt

1. A Quality Wallet

The things a man carries tells a lot about him and that’s no more true than with your wallet – check out my  article to the left for bifold, card cases, and phone wallet recommendations.

The below are only a few recommendations for bifold wallets.

Wallet Ashley Weston

$195 – Shinola Slim Bifold Leather Wallet 
$525 – Louis Vuitton Slender Wallet
$80 – Bellroy Low Down Wallet

THE #ASKAW SHOW: EPISODE 09 W/ Andrew Snavely FROM PrimerMagazine.com

In this episode, my special guest – Andrew Snavely from PrimerMagazine.com answer some of the most scintillating questions for the readers/viewers.

Have a question you’d like me to answer? Ask in the comments of the above youtube video or send me an email.

In this episode, we answer:

Q: I’ve lost a significant amount of weight and now all of my clothes are clownishly large on me. Can a tailor make my clothes fit again or should I just buy all new ones?

A: See the video above for the answer and my men’s clothing fit guide for how your clothes should fit.

Q: I watched your T-Shirt video and if I have a nice looking tee with a pretty minimalist design, does that hinder a look the same way a straight up graphic tee would?

A: Short answer – sort of. See the video for the longer answer.

Q: As a shorter man (5’6″), I find it difficult to find stuff that fits me and looks good. I was hoping you can provide some general style tips for shorter men.

A: See TheModestMan.com for a great site for shorter men style. But in our experience, as long as your clothing fits properly, there’s not much else to worry about.

Q: I recently picked up a Briefcase in a navy/ tan leather color way, would I match my wallet/watch/belt/etc. To the bag? What would you do in my situation?

A: Don’t think about it too much. Andrew is less of a stickler here, but I am more of a stickler. See video for details.