Just when you think the fashion industry has done it all, it goes and reinvents the fanny pack. Sure, these next-generation, high style hip pouches are billed with sexier names—belt bags, waist wallets, bum bags—but we still see them for what they truly are.
The fanny pack has always been a statement piece, but until a few years ago that statement was either, “Hello, I am very obviously a tourist,” or, “Yes, ’80s–themed parties are still alive and well.” Buckling into one of these human-turned-kangaroo packs was not cute or trendy by any means.
Now, fanny packs are cinching waists and hanging low on the hips of runway models at Alexander Wang, Balenciaga, and Chloé shows. Fashion-forward celebrities Sarah Jessica Parker, Rihanna, and Blake Lively have been spotted toting their essentials waist-side. Sleek designer fanny packs cropped up in many a street style shot at this year’s Paris Couture Week.
And I’m finally coming to terms with the fact that I want one.
Through the lens of pure practicality, the fanny pack does no wrong. It’s easily accessible, hands-free, and the perfect size for when a backpack is too big and pockets too small. Wearing one, your upper body is totally unencumbered—a weight off your shoulders in every sense of the phrase. But how to style this former faux pas?
To keep it classic, stay simple. We love a minimalist leather fanny pack with a fitted white t-shirt, frayed denim, and some comfy travel shoes or around the waist of a casual, lightweight dress. For a bolder look, pair a printed pack with high-waisted shorts and a body suit or crop top. You can even belt one around a long wrap coat or cardigan to layer up when the temperature cools.