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How to Dress like a Dane: Bag Edition

When your life is spent on a bike, you need a good bag to organize your stuff from morning till night. This bag needs to be small enough to fit into your bike basket, tough enough to withstand the weather, and fashionable enough to carry around Copenhagen too. Everyone seems to realize this. Just like with Danish shoes, there seems to some sort of unspoken code for choosing the proper bag.

All Danes carry around the same bags- or variations of them- for all of their different activities. Here is the breakdown and some American-friendly options, so you can join in back at home.

Everyone starts his or her day off with a trip to the gym. I finally realized this and got a gym membership this week. When you join a gym, they usually provide you with a classic duffel that you can tote all of your clothes and gym necessities around in. God forbid you be seen on the streets in a t-shirt! The typical Nike duffel is a little too casual, but the small L.L Bean duffel will do the job perfectly for a pretty reasonable price! Get it here.

After you finish your hardcore work out and leave (obviously looking like you didn’t break a sweat), you should have just enough time to head home and switch out your duffel for your 
chic school backpack. I kid you not when I say that about 90% of Denmark uses the exact same brand of backpack. The go-to bag is the Fjallraven Kanken classic. Like the L. L. Bean duffel, these bags are timeless and come in about 30 different colors. I’m pretty sure I’m going to have a bright yellow one before I leave here. You can buy them online here , but if you want something a little less Euro, Kipling bags like this one are pretty similar. You can get them here. They’re not super cheap, but they’re really sturdy and will last you forever.

Once classes are out, it’s time to hit the clubs. Old, young, everyone is going out. As we all know, you don’t have to carry much. You just need an ID, some money, your transportation pass (can’t get around here without it), and your phone. To keep their hands free, the Danes don’t fall back on that good ol’ Duke standard, the fanny pack. They rely on the “neck purse”. All of the stores here sell these in beaded, sequined, studded, and fringed varieties. They’re practical and pretty. Topshop has some really cute ones like this one and I think I’ve seen some at Forever 21 from time to time as well.

I’ve said this over and over again, but the Danes really do have their act together. They manage to look fabulous day to night by investing in several very nice bags that they can use for years. There’s no reason you shouldn’t as well!

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