The Rise and Fall of Bum Bags

How did the once dorky trend go from rags to riches?

Credit: Jennifer Padilla

Bum bags are arguably the most polarising bag in the accessory community. They’ve come a long way from being thrown in the bargain bins at Urban Outfitters.The hands-free bag has been a symbol for dorkiness among tourists and dads for the past several years, but they’re back as brands like Fendi, Zara and Balenciaga showcase the once unfashionable trend on their shelves.

Bum bags date back to the Copper Age when a 5300-year-old frozen human body’s wardrobe was shown to be wearing “belt bags” made of leather and fur. Time magazine’s October 26, 1992 cover story reported the discovery of the human, Otzi the Iceman, wearing “a leather pouch resembling a small version of the ‘fanny packs’ worn by tourists today.” That’s right. People were already sporting the trend, granted it was for a more practical use in hunting and gathering. 

The United Kingdom first coined “bum bag” in the 1950s, but the bag is now more popularly known as a fanny pack. However, it wasn’t until the ‘80s when the trend gained some footing. Bum bags started popping up in its true form: nylon, neon-coloured and purely worn around the waist. They were being sported based on functionality rather than a fashion statement. Around the same time, tourism had significantly risen in popular cities, such as New York and Japan, and bum bags were simply being used for practical travel purposes.

By the ‘90s, the trend had shifted into athleisure wear, with women wearing their Kelly Kapowski biker shorts and fitted crop tops. Not to mention the iconic Dwayne the Rock Johnson outfit back in 1996 of the wrestler sporting a black turtleneck, light wash denim and an ever so tiny black patent bum bag.

Somewhere along the way, bum bags became “dorkier” and “dad like” rather than fashionable.

Fashion writer for the LA based website Good + Well Erin Bunch wrote an article titled: “How to wear a fanny pack without looking like your dad”. She says for a while, the trend was embarrassing to sport. She remembers seeing her mum and dad wearing the bags around their waist on family vacations during the ‘90s.

While the trend still got its bad rap in the media, Karl Lagerfeld created quilted black lambskin fanny packs for Chanel in 1994, while Louis Vuitton also started gracing fanny packs in runway shows. While designers started to join in on the bum bag fad, there was an irony that came with the look.

In her article, Bunch says it was the nylon material and utilitarian use that made the look so dated in the ‘80s, which is why the fad had faded. Bunch changed her opinion though during the early 2000’s, when she saw Carrie Bradshaw wearing a Gucci bum bag with a black crop top and striped skirt on an episode of Sex and the City.

“That was the first time I saw one and thought it was styled pretty cool,” Bunch says.“They came back in 2017 when I wrote that article because ‘it girls’ like Kendall Jenner and Bella Hadid were starting to wear them.”

Stylist and fashion blogger Jennifer Padilla frequently wears her studded leather Zara bum bag with her street and chic style on her Instagram feed. She remembers when she first saw fashion influencer and Youtuber Brittany Xavier sporting a red blazer and a Fendi bum bag cinched in at the waist. It inspired Padilla to purchase a bum bag of her own. She says as an ‘80s baby, she remembers when bum bags were simply made of nylon, cheesy neon colours and a zipper across the top.

 “I remember even as a kid seeing fanny packs when I was growing up and thinking ‘Oh that’s ugly,’” the stylist said. “I think it’s about how they were styled back then. People would wear them with baggy pants or even overalls with the one strap hanging, but I mean look at all these couture high fashion brands rocking these pieces.”

For Padilla, the trend went from ugly to couture because the materials were evolving as brands such as Louis Vuitton and Balenciaga started showing them in a chicer design in 2015 fashion runways. The other reason she feels the trend has evolved is because more women and men started wearing them across the chest.

Bunch agrees that it all comes down to the way they’re being worn, along with the people who sport fanny packs today.

“I feel like today, trends don’t come in and out of fashion like they used to so intensely. Personal style is dictated through different ways now,” Bunch says. “It used to be strictly the runways that said what was in fashion, and nowadays it’s influencers and social media as well, so there’s so many more voices and style has become a lot more eclectic as a result.”

To see them go from a practical bag to carry sunscreen in to the accessory piece of 2018 is quite a statement. Now fashion buyers seem them in every iteration of brand from Topshop’s neon green bum bag to Nasty Gal’s silver studded black version of the bag. When you see Rihanna sporting a coral-coloured power suit with a matching cinched in fanny pack, it’s hard not to want to rock one too. So here’s to the fanny pack comeback!

How to Rock Your Fanny Pack

Over the Shoulders: People have been sporting their bum bags over the shoulders, and it virtually works with any look. The over the shoulder look is for street wear everyday looks. If you’re keeping it casual with sweatpants, you can keep your look minimalistic with a matching sweatshirt and a bright coloured bum bag. You can also wear it with a simple denim jean and t-shirt for a more low key look. For someone with a more athletic built or pear shape, this is the way to wear it to accentuate the top half of your body.

Keep it Classic: If you’re apple shaped, this will be the most flattering way to wear the bum bag, and it works the best for BBQ’s, amusement parks, or just a fun summer day out. The classic nylon bag is nothing to be ashamed of as you can rock it with distressed jeans and an open bomber jacket for some more edge. You can also wear it more formally if it’s slung over a long floral skirt and an oversized fuzzy jumper.

Cinch it in: If you have an hourglass figure and want to call attention to your waist rather than your hips, try purchasing a bum bag that belts at the waist. This is the sleekest way to rock a bum bag especially if it’s a boxier shape. You can rock it like Rihanna by wearing a satin blazer and smart pair of trousers, or you can keep it more casual with a simple A-line dress.

Special thanks to Jennifer Padilla and Erin Bunch for the interviews and photos for my article! You can follow Jennifer here and Erin here.

PLL Fashion from Exes and OMGs

Pretty Little Liars had a ton of fashion, including Aria’s potential wedding dress, so check out the fashion below. Also, here is my weekly review on the episode from last night:https://mytrendingstories.com/article/pretty-little-liars-season-7-episode-8-review-exes-and-omgs/

Club Monaco ‘Rimona Jacket’ – no longer available

I loved how modern this jacket was. The color and sleek zippers worked so well here. And the embellished shirt is so gorgeous. I loved that she paired it so there was just a peek of metal.

Alice + Olivia ‘Sidney Top’ – $330.00

Hanna wore this beautiful top that had an Aztec print on it. I also liked the sheer sleeves. Ashley Benson’s hair has been amazing in this season and her waves look so pretty with this off the shoulder top.

Zara ‘Flowing Shirt with Bib Front Embroidery’ – $49.90

I liked this preppy summery top. This looked like a Spencer top, but I liked that Aria wore these with bright jeans in true Aria fashion. I would wear these with distressed jeans for a more casual look.

Rebecca Minkoff ‘Page Cold Shoulder Sweater’ – $148.00

I really liked how cozy this sweater looked. The cutouts on her sweater matched her ripped jeans, and somehow Troian still makes Spencer have a very preppy vibe.

Rebecca Taylor ‘Sleeveless Dreamweaver V Neck Dress’ – $199.00

Alison wore this girly dress with a simply flowing blazer. I like this blue color on Alison.

Sanctuary ‘Lace Up Blouse’ – $79.00

Emily always wears these criss cross shirts, and I like how flowy and laidback this one feels.

Sherri Hill ‘Spring 2016 Gown’ – not available online

Okay, so Aria hasn’t worn it yet, but it was such a pretty simple dress, and I could see Aria wearing her short hair in an updo or even a headband.

PLL Fashion 7×07

 

There was a won of fashion from the last PLL episode, so here are my thoughts on the fashion. Also, you can check out my review right here: https://mytrendingstories.com/article/pretty-little-liars-season-7-episode-7-review-original-gangsters/

Forever 21 ‘Contemporary Open-Shoulder Top’ – $14.90

I loved this off the shoulder top for Emily. It’s super effortless and I love the choker and loose waves giving an easygoing summer vibe. And this top is super affordable too.

Topshop ‘Embroidered Jacquard Jacket’ – $59.99

This Topshop jacket is super pretty for Aria. I love how architectural this jacket is with its boxy structure.

H&M ‘Merino Wool Sweater’ – no longer available

Yvonne wore a super low key sweater, and I love how casual and cute it is. The sheer front has such a delicate scenery pattern, which I like a lot.

Topshop ‘Striped Hybrid Jumper’ – $80.00

This one piece jumper is very Spencer. It’s classic, simple and Troian always rocks these types of preppy looks.

Zara ‘Patchwork Leather Mini Skirt’ – $69.90

Aria is known for her main staple, which are leather jackets, but she opts for an interesting Zara skirt. I love the patchwork with the different muted colors.

Topshop ‘Gingham Ruffle Shirt’ – $60.00

Hanna surprised me with this textured top. This top has a lot going on with the flowers and the gingham print and the ruffles, but Hanna pairs it with a classic jacket. It made for a fun outfit with a sharp look.

Forever 21 ‘Galaxy Print Athletic Jacket’ – no longer available

So when Emily and Pam were on their run, I noticed how cute this jacket was. It’s sold out, but who knew Forever 21 had such great affordable athletic wear.

Stella McCartney ‘Jeweled Sateen Top’ – $326.00

This jeweled top is super pretty. I love how random the colors and shapes are because the top is so simple. It really works here. Thanks to PLL Closet on Tumblr for the photos and details on the clothing from the episode.

PLL Fashion 7×05

PLL came back with another solid episode and amazing fashion from the episode. Here’s my review of the episode:https://mytrendingstories.com/article/pretty-little-liars-season-7-episode-5-review-along-comes-mary/

Sandro ‘Chunky Knit Zip Back Cropped Sweater’ – $65.00I loved this Sandro crop top from Spencer. It was very nicely paired with wide legged trousers from Zara. I love how it’s ribbed inward and that it was loosely worn.

Levi’s ‘Striped Roll-Tab Shirt’ – $34.99I was loving Emily’s style in this episode. This slouchy pin striped shirt looked comfy and also a little edgy with Emily’s loose waves and leather pants.

Topshop ‘Chevron Print Mini Skirt’ – no longer available– Aria looked incredible in her Topshop skirt  and her off the shoulder top. It was perfectly worn with her long necklace. She really nailed the sleek look for this episode.

Topshop ‘Oversized Biker Jacket’ – $110.00– This was my favorite piece from the episode because I’ve actually been looking for a leather jacket like this one. She wore it with her cute button down for a classic look.

And a huge thanks to PLL Closet for providing the photos and the awesome work she does finding the details for the clothes.

 

 

Girl Meets True Maya Fashion

I’ve been loving the style on Girl Meets World because it’s actually a huge part of Maya’s storyline right now. Here’s the review to the last episode: https://mytrendingstories.com/article/girl-meets-world-review-maya-makes-her-mark/ 

Please check out my reviews on the website! I appreciate anyone looking at my work. For more on the fashion from Girl Meets World, please keep reading.

Zara Lemon Print Top worn by Rowan Blanchard on Girl Meets World
Riley’s Lemon Tank

This was such a cute Riley top, and I love that it’s from Zara. Her style is very girly and preppy in this episode and this boxy lemon print tank and pigtails prove to be a nice contrast to Maya’s edgier looks.

Urban Outfitters Music Series Ringer Tee in Bowie worn by Sabrina Carpenter on Girl Meets World
Maya’s Necklace

I loved this first look from the “old Maya” because it’s super edgy, and I couldn’t picture Riley wearing this. I loved the Bowie shirt with the jean jacket. The necklace was a nice touch and I left the link to it above.

AEO Denim x Jegging Crop worn by Maya Hart on Girl Meets World
Maya’s Distressed Jeans

I also loved the ripped jeans here. Distressed jeans was a trend way back when I was too young for them, but I love that the trend is back.

Forever 21 Embroidered Gauze Top worn by Rowan Blanchard on Girl Meets World
Riley’s Top

This is a classic Riley blouse. It’s a color I think we’ve seen her in a bit and the embroidered top and blue jeans is what makes Riley’s style more feminine and sweet compared to Maya’s.

Free People This Town Dress worn by Rowan Blanchard on Girl Meets World
Riley’s Shirt Dress

I hope you enjoyed this quick post 🙂 Thanks to WornOnTV for all the photos provided and please check out the website for more fashion on television.

 

PLL Fashion 7×03

So here are some of favorite looks from the episode. What a crazy episode! You can check out my review here: https://mytrendingstories.com/article/pretty-little-liars-review-season-7-claims-its-first-victim/

Enjoy the fashion!

I’m loving this Spencer’s trench coat. I like this mustard color and the way it all billows. I’m also loving that the liars are wearing a lot of Zara this season.

Zara ‘Trench Coat with Horn Button’ – $79.99

This is a classic Emily jacket. It’s olive, has patchwork and super casual  I love this color on Emily and thought this was a cute, but still appropriate for Emily’s age.

Zara ‘Patch Overshirt’ – no longer available

I liked how Spencer wore this with a trench. At first, I thought she was wearing a turtleneck, but I like this high neck peplum top for her. For some reason, I love Troian in all these high neck tops. It’s flattering on her.

Elizabeth and James ‘Perth Peplum Top’ – $119.99

Hanna’s kimono was my favorite piece. I loved the black tank top and burgundy skinny keans that she wore. This denim kimnon is very unique, and I love that Hanna wore it very casually.

Hanna’s Kimono- Intermix

Also, check out PLL Closet on Tumblr for more Pretty Little Liars fashion. Her blog is awesome!

PLL Fashion 7×02

The last episode of PLL has me convinced it’s Lucas. I’m not sure why, but he’s always been someone whose motives I have to question. Anyway, I’m excited for next week because it looks way more exciting than what we got this week. Here are the fashions that I liked after watching the episode. Thank you to PLL Closet on tumblr for the photos provided and to the details she constantly has for each piece worn! Check out her blog here: http://pllcloset.tumblr.com/

Zara ‘Faux Leather Jacket’ in Bright Yellow – $69.90

I loved Aria’s leather jacket in this bright mustard color. It’s a great color on a classic cut for a leather jacket. I’m loving her style so much after the time jump because we get these more tailored pieces in a fun modern way.

Alice + Olivia ‘Riki Fitted Dress With Waist Cutout’ – $119.98

Hanna looked amazing in the red cutout dress. It fit like a glove. The red lip and tousled waves worked so well. She clearly wanted to go back to the start with Jordan.

Alexis ‘Aria Starlight High-Low Dress’ – £296.00

I wish we got to see the whole dress in the episode because when I saw it online, I really loved the effect of the high low dress. I love the silvery polka dots throughout it fits Hanna well

Thakoon ‘Sequined Fringe Shimmer Sweater’

This was an interesting sweater. I liked the fringe and the understated shimmer throughout. If you look at the whole sweater, it has a lot going on for a boho feel, but I also bet it’s super comfy.

Sandro ‘Ekin Top’ – $250.00

I love this Sandro top because the print is so retro and fun. I would expect Spencer to wear this top, but I liked this for Aria too.

Sandro ‘Polina Crepe Straight-Leg Pants’ – $132.75

This wasn’t a flashy piece from the episode, but I like how versatile these straight leg pants are. Spencer makes it her own by pairing it with a printed blouse and a classic navy blazer.

Hope you enjoyed this post 🙂

PLL Fashion Finds: 6×12

I really liked Aria and Hanna’s style on the last episode of Pretty Little Liars. I left my thoughts below, along with the links if you want to check out the clothing. Thanks to PLL Closet on tumblr, who always finds the details on the fashion from the show. Check out her blog here: http://pllcloset.tumblr.com/tagged/6×12

I loved how flowy these trousers were. The pants were very boho, but Hanna made it more preppy with a collared crop top and a blazer.

Zara ‘Printed Bell Bottom Trousers’

I also really liked this crisp collared top. Hanna is definitely embracing her career and it’s clear with her fashion this season.

Elle Sasson ‘Cisco Crop Top’ – $78.00

Aria’s style is a little more understated this season. She’s still wearing moto jackets, but she’s wearing them in pastels and grays instead. This leather jacket is classic Aria, and I love the color. It softens the look.

Maje ‘Leather Jacket’ 

This romper made me want the spring to come because I really liked the structure of this piece. I can see Hanna wearing this too, but Aria makes it more her style by wearing a textured jacket and a statement necklace.

French Connection ‘Paradise Satin Romper’ – $99.99

Helmut Lang ‘Lightening Wash Denim Biker Jacket’ – $167.77

PLL Fashion from the Premiere

There was so much fashion from last night’s episode of PLL. It’s five years later and the fashion is still consistent. Thank you to PLL Closet on tumblr. Check out her blog here: http://pllcloset.tumblr.com/tagged/6×11

Vince ‘Long Sleeve Abstract Block Tee’ – $93.00: Spencer’s style is still structured with this geometric sweater and a collared shirt underneath.

Elevenses ‘Archival Collection: No 2 Pencil Skirt’ – no longer available: I loved this outfit. The shirt is super cute, but the standout piece is this pencil skirt. A pencil skirt with pencils is very quirky and fits Aria’s style well.

Zara ‘Cape’ – no longer available: I love how modern this cape is. I would expect to see Spencer wearing this over Aria.

Haute Hippie ‘Long Sleeve Silk Shirt Dress’ – $124.97: Ali looked so pretty in this color. This shirt dress really brings out her eyes and I love how her hair was pinned back on the side.

BCBGMAXAZRIA ‘Runway Myles Jacket’ – no longer available: Aria always wears embellished jackets and this one fits Aria’s style well. I like the studs with the Aztec print.

MINKPINK ‘Pina Coladas Tank’ – $39.00: This shirt was perfect for where Emily is five years later. This tank was fun and simple. Very Emily.

Maggy London ‘Illusion Yoke Crepe Sheath Dress’ – $148.00: This was my favorite of the funeral dresses.

Whitney Eve ‘The Baths Dress’ – $107.98: Hanna’s style hasn’t changed too much, but she does look more refined with cream and rose colors.

BCBGMAXAZRIA ‘Keary Burnout Lace Skirt’ – $160.80: This midi skirt is very spring. The paneling also adds a modern touch.

 

 

PLL Fashion 6×08

I was so glad we got some sort of “gathering,” because it’s always exciting to see the girl’s individual styles through dresses. I’m excited to see their prom dresses next week too. Here were my favorite looks from the episode.

Sidecca ‘Ballerina Print Cami Dress’ – no longer available

I’m so glad Aria wore this adorable dress instead of the gray and white plaid one she showed Emily earlier in the episode. This green dress is more fun.The straps were unique and the pattern is so whimsical and artsy, which is a nice change from Aria’s edgy style.

Zara ‘Gathered Seam Dress’ – $79.90

This dress is very Spencer. It has a very classic feel to its silhouette, but I like that a belt was added. The yellow and green print is also very artsy and fitting for the event.

Topshop ‘D-Ring High Neck Playsuit’ – $95.00

This is one of my favorite necklines. It’s very modern and the white really pops. I love that Hanna wore a leather jacket with this playsuit.

For more PLL Fashion Follow PLLCloset on Tumblr: http://pllcloset.tumblr.com/