What's in your wallet? More than likely, far too much—and we don't mean cash. A major design flaw of standard-issue men's wallets is that, while they generously expand to accommodate wads of hard-earned dollars, they're roomy enough to provide a safe haven to junk you should have thrown out years ago. This explains the Avatar ticket stub hiding behind your driver's license.
Our advice to anyone susceptible to butt-numbing back-pocket hoarding: Look to the cell phone. Androids, iPhones, and their mobile brethren get slimmer with every new model, yet wallet design has been slow to follow suit. At last, however, there is some trending toward the micro.
Take, for instance, TGT (a.k.a. Tight), a project blowing up on Kickstarter. The idea for the contraption came to Brooklyn designer Jack Sutter after he saw his friend carrying around credit cards held together by a rubber band that had previously graced supermarket-bought broccoli. Sutter liked his friend's inventiveness but not its produce-section origin, so he fashioned appealing elastic straps to wrap around his driver's license and other essential items and then tacked on a leather pouch for storing cash.
But Sutter isn't the only designer trying to trim the fat from our money holders. The Supr Slim Wallet is another minimalist creation meant to eradicate George Costanza wallets from the face of the earth. Amazingly, it's even thinner than the TGT, consisting of a single three-millimeter-wide band of elastic. Even more amazingly, the material retains its grip even after prolonged use. Regardless of whether you carry a thick stack of credit cards or just a few, you can be sure that they won't fall out.
If you can't bear the thought of carrying a wallet that skimps on leather or worry that elastic might be too casual, take a look at the Moneywrap. Made out of good, old-fashioned cowhide, the compact doohickey folds your dollar bills around your plastic and then secures the stack of essentials with a sturdy, lightweight strap, not unlike a Moleskine notebook.
All three of these wallets are so compact that you can literally fit them inside the old standbys. Just don't forget to remove yours before throwing your outdated model in the trash.
—Keith Wagstaff is a writer and editor based in Brooklyn. Follow him @kwagstaff.
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