By  on August 18, 2014


Handbags — but just for men.

The very category name  “handbags” might deter a few male customers, but it’s a good testing ground for Eran Elfassy, cocreative director at Mackage, to see how well a leather-goods line from the brand will be received.

For its debut, the handbag line will offer four pieces: two backpacks, a tote and a laptop bag.

“It’s for a metrosexual guy, a stylish guy,” said Elfassy. “We wanted to explore and see if the market is for it.”

He said he created the line out of necessity.

“A woman has a purse for her belongings and I feel like we don’t have enough pockets,” he said. “I think things get lost and a man has so many things: a laptop, iPad, there’s not enough places to put things.”

The line will retail from $450 to $590, with backpacks going for $550. The leathers are sourced in Italy and Korea and the product is manufactured in China.

“I literally feel five or 10 years younger with these backpacks on,” he said. “I want to make people feel that when they wear it they are more creative.”

Elfassy said he plans to expand the line in the future and will incorporate fabrics in coats with technical fabrics that will be infused with his leather.

“Every year we’ll expand the collection,” he said.

Mackage will be showing the handbag line at The Tents at Project, booth 349.

NEXT: Mr. Nice Tie >>

Mr. Nice Tie

NBA All-Star Chris Bosh wants to prove to the fashion world that he knows a few things about fashion. Namely, ties.

“I’ve worn ties all my life ever and loved to dress up to go to church,” he told WWD. “I’ve always been into looking good.”

To begin his fashion pursuit, Bosh opted for the tie business “because every guy needs a nice tie.”

With that slogan in mind, Bosh launched Mr. Nice Tie together with accessories brand Armstrong & Wilson, and is introducing his collection, which consists of five neckties and five bow ties, at the Armstrong & Wilson booth (1406) at the MRket show this week.

“Some are a little bold but some are more conservative,” he said. “I wanted to put my impression on the ties in some kind of way with a classic feel. I’ve always liked James Bond and how he can put on a two-button suit, a pocket square, and it’s the sharpest thing you’ve ever seen.”

Price points range from $100 to $150.

The Miami Heat forward knows there will be skeptics who see another athlete with yet another fashion brand.

“I understand the cliché with athletes attaching their names to another brand,” he said. “It’s my company and I put a lot of time into this. There are weekly calls making sure the structure is proper, making sure we’re telling a story that makes sense. I can’t help the stereotype that people already have in their minds. People will think what they think. But I hope people will see the product and be able to buy something fulfilling.”

Bosh said he’s shown a couple of friends his designs — but hasn’t shown anyone on the court.

“I haven’t shown the basketball friends,” he said. “Eventually they’ll wear it,  though. I’ll have to be sneaky about it and give it to their stylists, but they’ll wear it either way.”

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