- Buyer's Guide
Match Up: 7 Awesome Bag and Footwear Combinations
Footwear and bags. An unlikely pairing? Not really. Unless you’re feeling particularly brave, you’re not venturing out without shoes. And unless you have a carry load small enough to fit in your pockets, a bag’s coming with you.
So we got down to thinking, which of these daily necessities would make a perfect pairing? Whether you’re grinding out the daily commute or slogging up muddy trails in pursuit of adventure? Here’s our picks of the perfect partners for your feet and your gear hauling needs…
All-round and Travel
Travel gets a whole lot more exciting when you can embrace a multitude of terrains and environments. So Tropicfeel steps up with their Canyon, an all-terrain sneaker that works just as well in the water as it does on land. Grippy and comfy enough for hiking, quick-drying for use in water, lightweight for packing ease, and low-key enough to stride easily onto urban streets without missing a beat. Oh, and all with sustainable construction too. We think the Tropicfeel Canyon is a darn impressive travel shoe that’s great for one-bag travel and equally adept at being your go-to footwear for weekdays and weekend use alike.
Its partner in travel fun? The Tropicfeel Shell Backpack. This savvy travel backpack does more than meets the eye. Not only expanding from 22L to 40L, but also smartly designed with a in-built organized, easy-to-access wardrobe with a compression system – a literal closet for your bag. So you can compartmentalize all your travel gear and simply remove and hang the closet at your destination. Factor in quality clamshell access, sweet exterior modularity, weatherproofing, and sustainable materials and you’ve got a serious travel companion. A travel companion that’s now raised over 1 million dollars on Kickstarter and counting!
Danner introduced the original Mountain Light way back in 1979 and it’s garnered a reputation as one of the greatest hiking boots out there. Now they’ve reintroduced this hiking legend, dished up in full-grain leather glory with a one-piece leather upper for superior protection from the elements. Speaking of the elements, a Gore-Tex lining keeps water and other elements out while allowing your feet to breathe. The Vibram Kletterlift outsole provides great shock absorption and grip on both wet and dry surfaces. And each boot is handmade in Portland, Oregon, with the same attention to detail the brand has exuded over nine decades in the business.
Now what could possibly pair better with such rugged boots than a pack from the rugged carry masters at Mystery Ranch? The Mystery Ranch 3DAP CL is inspired by their military packs and made for adventurous use in the backcountry. The CL version is crafted in the USA using 500D Cordura and features Mystery Ranch’s iconic 3-Zip opening for easy access. Add in MR’s supremely comfortable harness and multiple attachment points and you get a pack ready for a full day of carrying diverse loads tailored to different outings. Bonus? It’s got a laptop sleeve too, so you can switch up trails for pavements for urban pursuits with tech in tow.
Corridor NYC has carved out a reputation for fashion-forward menswear. But in addition to clothing, they’ve designed a darn fine sneaker too. The Recess Runner is the brand’s first sneaker but you wouldn’t know it thanks to the meticulous attention to detail and expert craftsmanship courtesy of a family-owned workshop based in Portugal. The goal was to design a sneaker that would fit into any decade and they’ve nailed it with this timeless piece. The upper is a combination of leather, suede, and nubuck, with a soft leather lining that feels good the first time you slip these sneakers on.
Partnering this urban-savvy sneaker is the Mission Workshop Khyte. The San Francisco brand knows how to blend burly technical construction with street-ready style, and the Khyte exudes both in spades. The weatherproof laptop messenger keeps tech safe and dry during your daily commutes, yet quickly accessible. And its understated looks slide unobtrusively into a variety of work environments, while still looking slick on your downtime wanderings.
“Dang, those are killer.” Or simply, “I WANT.” Two apt statements when considering the boot beauties that are the Marion Olive. These ridiculously good-looking boots are crafted by hand in the USA using a limited and unique olive full-grain Horween Chromexcel leather upper. They pop with little details such as antique brass eyelets and HELM’s signature white midsole. Art for your feet, with a suave style people will stop you in the street to ask about.
The Marion Olive boots stand out and commandeer attention. So you need a bag partner that can hold its own, standing strong in its own right with bad-ass style and top-notch craftsmanship. Meet the Bedouin Foundry Genghis. A messenger that will conquer the heart of any carry enthusiast, this is a completely captivating bag that will have you relishing the look and feel of its waxed canvas, the striking visual surprise of its interior lining, and its satisfyingly click-tastic AustriAlpin Cobra buckles. The components are premium, the handcrafted build is simply excellent, and the aura of pure awesomeness is hard to tear your eyes away from. Seriously, we’ve struggled.
The active hustler is all about getting stuff done. Sometimes they keep the details under wraps. Sometimes they don’t. But make no mistake about it, even when they don’t look busy, they’re hustling. And that’s the point of GORUCK’s MACV-1 Boots. The style is super low-key. There’s nothing flashy about these boots. But they are built to perform when duty calls. Be it hauling gear up a rocky trail or slipping surreptitiously into a crowded street. Inspired by military boots from the ’60s, the MACV-1 comes in a choice of full-grain leather or suede paired with 1000D Cordura and an all-terrain rubber outsole. Tough, comfy, and versatile, they’re always ready to go, even when the going gets tough.
GORUCK designed their Rucker for tackling GORUCK Challenges and the demands of rucking with heavy weights. But there’s no reason a bag this tough can’t embrace active use across multiple environments. The flexible design can switch easily between urban and outdoor use. And its super-tough build takes demanding use in stride, squaring its shoulders to get down in the dirt – or simply to keep that feisty bag of groceries in check.
The Main Street Boot nods to White’s original store location on the corner of Main St. and Stevens in downtown Spokane. Inspired by designs from the archives but made for stepping out in style months, years, and decades from now, the Main Street is a boot that blends expert American craftsmanship with timeless elegance. It’s handmade with a full-grain leather upper and looks just as good with jeans as it does with a suit.
The dapper charm of the Main Street Boot deserves an equally dapper carry companion. Filson’s Original Briefcase is a carry classic that deftly blends durable materials, hard-wearing build quality, and understated style. It tips its hat to an office environment but breezes easily through airports or casual café lunches too. Filson builds the briefcase in the USA with their water-repellent Rugged Twill, complementing it with their signature bridle leather detailing. For more formal settings, carry it by hand. When you’re moving casually, sling it over your shoulder. Like the Main Street Boot, this bag adapts, while always keeping you looking well put together.
A boot fit for Indiana Jones? You bet. The Alden 401 Boot garnered a new nickname after Harrison Ford pursued adventure wearing it while filming Indiana Jones movies. The boot is crafted in the USA and features a Horween Chromexcel leather upper teamed with a Goodyear welted outsole. Clean and beautifully crafted, it’s a handsome partner for your own unexpected adventures and daily pursuits too.
Speaking of clean, few packs come as pared-back as the Veilance Nomin. Now you can’t get around the fact this pack is pricey. But it also exhibits a masterclass in technical construction from the innovators at Arc’teryx. Incredibly sleek, highly weatherproof, and made to last, it’s minimalist carry luxury at its finest.
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