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Tough Fashion Questions: How Do I Choose a Modern Briefcase?

My little brother just graduated from school and is about to start working. I wanted to buy him a professional looking briefcase for his birthday -- maybe something a little more unique than what they sell at Macy's. Any suggestions? -Aaron S.

I've received a some great style questions from readers and thought I'd address this one with a post. I really believe everyone should have a durable, quality bag that they truly love. For professional men, that's likely to be their briefcase, and a great briefcase is hard to find.

While messenger bags prevail in modern times, there's still something very romantic about a man carrying a solid briefcase. I suggest investing in one that's modern enough to survive the times (most cases today come with a shoulder strap, and are tech-friendly), and old-fashioned enough to last forever (when in doubt, choose leather).

Choosing the right briefcase is easier than it looks, and should be fun -- think of it as being similar to choosing a car:

  • Do you want something curvy or boxy?
  • Vintage or modern?
  • How does it handle? Consider the width of the handle straps and see how they feel.
  • Leather or fabric?
  • Is the interior to your liking? Pockets? Pen holders? Laptop cushion?
  • Quality vs. price -- will this baby last, or will it break down on you in due time?

To jump start, check out my picks ($63-$845) in the gallery above. 

If you have a style stumper, write in to lily.7x7 [at] gmail [dot] com.


Lily Ko (lily.7x7 @ gmail.com) studied fashion design and merchandising at Central Saint Martins and the Academy of Art University. In addition to writing for 7x7, Lily is an editor at SF Station, works as a freelance stylist and covers food, fashion and fun on her blog, Curated SF.