Bags as a topic is beyond broad. It encompasses any type of accessory for on-the-go use when carrying personal belongings. This includes bags for functional and fashionable purposes in a range of styles including backpacks, handbags, crossbody, messenger, wheeled bags and garment carriers.
Today the bag you wear is almost an extension of your personality. Usually chosen by the user or by a loved one as a gift, it is tailored to an individual’s style for their specific needs and wants. With bags there is not one for all, there are hundreds of thousands of styles at different price points, constructed from different materials with different features that follow trends around the world.
Although the concept of bags has been around for centuries and the purpose of carrying personal possessions has stayed the same, shapes and styles have evolved over the years to suit a wide variety of purposes and environments and to become what we know them as today.
Bags were shown in Egyptian hieroglyphics, worn typically by men and tied around the waist, (similar to the bum bag which has gone through a revival in recent years), to keep items close to the body. Further down the line, history also shows the accessory has been around since the 14th century during which drawstring styles fitted around the waist of men and women were introduced for people to keep their valuables in. Women’s bags were often decorated with small ornaments for a more feminine design. Later in the 16th century as an adaption to the trend of large petticoats and skirts, women often hid small pouches or accessories in the many layers, while men kept pouches on the inside of their clothing. In the 19th century, as trends come and go, the full skirts didn’t last forever and slim-fitting clothing was in, resulting in a need for bags to be carried and not hidden in clothing, and the popular handbag was born.
In the 19th century following the mass tourism trend and travel being made more accessible and not just for the wealthy, there was an increase in demand for handheld luggage.
Considered a modern-day staple loved by students, working professionals and outdoor sports or activities, backpacks, as we know, have not been around for that long. The zipped backpack was introduced by Gerry Cunningham in 1938, however, these designs were not synonymous with the styles we know and use today, but were almost exclusively used for outdoor activities such as hiking and camping. Around this period up until the later 19th century, some canvas and leather styles were popular amongst students for carrying books to school, some with one strap or worn on the back with shoulder straps and fastened by buckles. However, this wasn’t for everyone with most school children simply carrying their books by hand, with some fastening material around them to keep them compact for carrying.
It wasn’t until 1976 that the first lightweight, Nylon backpack was designed by the same outdoorsman who invented the backpack with zippers, who was passionate about his field of innovation. This design went on to change the way people would carry their belongings for years to come. As lightweight designs became increasingly popular and in demand, other brands took inspiration from these to designs to jump on the lightweight, practical trend – with backpack powerhouse JanSport launching shortly after.
Different Types of Bags
There are various styles that come under the overarching category of “bags”. We could go into detail about every single style of bag for every occasion, but we are just going to focus on the most popular styles under the universal travel goods sector for general leisure and business use.
When purchasing any bag it is important to consider what it will be used for and what you are expecting to fit it in it for these occasions, to avoid any post-purchase regrets or a state of cognitive dissonance (the dreaded gap between product expectations and reality upon arrival).
You know first impressions count and like to have clothing options before a big meeting.
Messenger Bags, Crossbody Luggage, Holdalls, Backpacks, Wheeled Bags, Garment/Suit Carriers
Key Factors In Choosing Any Bag.
• Size & storage – ensure the bag is a suitable size to fit your belongings for the trip planned. Will it fit your laptop & tablet? Files? Changes of clothes?
• Carry options – check the carry options are suitable for your lifestyle (worn on the back, crossbody, carried by handles or wheeled).
• Comfort – is it comfortable to use?
• Stitching & seams – check the stitching and construction along the seams are secure and fit for purpose.