Monday, February 11, 2008

Wallet Alert: Not-Bad Bags

(Balkan Tango Budapest "M" Inner Tube Bag, $120 @ Supermarket)

(Livity Urbanite Messenger Bag, $70 @ Tobi)

     I hate sacrificing style for substance. It's an inherently painful exchange. Often times, the choice that would be better for the planet is usually the much less aesthetically pleasing one. Hell, it's usually straight up ugly. Thankfully, the folks at Balkan Tango, a Hungarian design group, have managed to circumvent the whole issue with their recycled bags. I've seen people make those LP bags before, but the Budapest, made from six punctured bicycle tires, certainly managed to catch my eye.

     What I love most about the bag (aside from the ability to sidestep all that guilt) is that all the flaws and quirks of the tires, from the brand to the specifications, all merge into the bag's identity. It's a clever idea and I'm pretty sure that no two bags are alike. This is seriously looking like a very replacement for my current bag.

     Likewise, the Livity Urbanite is a classic messenger, replete with side pockets, front zip pocket, and velcro closure. Made of hemp and cotton with rafia pockets, this bag is the definition of going green. My only fear is that it's a bit too granola for my style. Lord knows I'd be absolutely horrified if some grungy hippie came up to me and asked me where I got my bag. But at $70, it's a much more viable option than the Balkan Tango one.

     A bag, a bag, my kingdom for a bag...

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