It’s Baaaack…

For years my friends have teased me about wearing a waist pouch, and with good reason.  Whether you call it a fanny pack (Canada and the United States), bumbag (UK), belly bag (Germany), or banana bag (France); the sad truth is that it was in style for about ten minutes in the 90s and ever since then it’s been a visible indicator of my defective fashion sense.

But I love my waist pouch.  I’ve got everything but the kitchen sink crammed in there.  It’s comfortable, practical, and hands-free; and I got over any self-consciousness about wearing it long ago.

I also got over calling it a ‘fanny pack’ after I discovered that while ‘fanny’ may mean ‘bum’ here, across the pond it refers to an entirely different portion of the female anatomy.  In my case ‘fanny pack’ would still be an accurate description since I wear my waist pouch front and centre, but I’d rather not be unintentionally vulgar.  (Intentionally vulgar, yes; frequently.  But I like to choose my times.)

Back in 2014 I was thrilled to discover that waist pouches seemed to be making a comeback, but when I didn’t see anyone else wearing one in public I simply assumed that (as usual) the fashion industry hadn’t come to its senses.  But that was only another example of my cluelessness, because apparently waist pouches have sneaked back onto the fashion scene.

My friends are much more observant than I.  Whenever they notice some celebrity rockin’ a waist pouch, they’re sure to let me know.  Last week my step-mom got into the act by mentioning she’d seen a pink sequined number on the Shopping Channel that would give me the ultimate in high-fashion panache.

Enlightened, I searched the shopping sites and voilà!  A plethora of packs, from $6.95 cheapies to $300 designer duds.  I was amazed to find materials ranging from my good old black leather to the aforementioned pink sequins, and everything in between including camo and floral patterns… plus the quintessential Dad bag from Walmart that made me laugh out loud:

Just in case the fashion industry forsakes me again (which it undoubtedly will) I’d like to point out that waist pouches have a long and distinguished history:  They started off five thousand years ago as belt-pouches, detoured to Scotland as sporrans, and appeared in Native American history as medicine pouches.

So not only am I honouring tradition by wearing a waist pouch, it turns out that I’ve also been a trendsetter all along:  a bleeding-edge fashionista who spotted a ‘thing’ decades before it arrived!  (And if you believe that, I’ve got a bridge to sell, too.)


In keeping with their fresh new look, fanny packs have risen above their original vulgar nomenclature with sophisticated new names like sling bags, waist packs, hip packs, hip sacks, and crossbody packs.  I showed off my updated vocabulary (and my ancient waist pouch) to my friends the other night, and as usual I came in for some lively teasing.  One friend suggested that ‘colostomy bag’ would be an appropriate moniker for smaller pouches worn off-centre.

I had to agree.  ‘Colostomy bag’ would be a perfect name for my waist pouch – after all, it’s where I carry all my shit.

So I know I’m probably a freakish minority, but… would you ever wear a waist pouch?  Have your say in this poll!

33 thoughts on “It’s Baaaack…

  1. Diane,

    You were so right! Fanny packs are back and have even made it on Nike shoes!


    Looking forward to Book 13!


    Dad fashion reaches new heights with these Nike fanny pack sandals

    Jessica LindsayThursday 31 May 2018 9:16 am

    (Picture: Nike) Just when we thought socks and sliders had brought dad fashion to the mainstream, Nike has gone one better with these beauties.

    Streetwear seems to be borrowing a lot from ‘so bad they’re kinda good’ styles at the moment (take this shirt on a t-shirt from Balenciaga, for example) so your verdict on these will all depend on your tastes.

    The Nike Benassi has the classic slider sandal look, but with a useful fanny pack on the front.

    (Picture: Nike)

    (Picture: Nike)

    (Picture: Nike) Reminiscent of those novelty flip-flops with a bottle opener on the bottom – but this time it’s fashion, darling – they’re dual use as shoes and somewhere to carry your keys.

    The collection is called ‘Fanny Pack’, and has three options.

    They come in black and grey, or you can go for a more jazzy 80s look with the green and aqua or pink and black colourways.

    Fans seem pretty convinced that these are straight fire.

    The @Nike sliders with the fanny pack are looking like I can fit some fun size snickers in there….lol #Sold

    — Neil (@neiltfx) 7:23 AM – May 31, 2018 Nike’s fanny pack sliders are abso genius

    — meg (@meganslip_) 4:56 AM – May 31, 2018 Why am I not even questioning the fact that I am ready to shell out some cash for those new @Nike “Fanny Pack” sliders…. It’s not even up for debate in my opinion. This summer is going places I never could’ve imagined.

    — Lyle Yarbrough (@LyleDYarbrough) 4:52 AM – May 31, 2018 Nike coming out with fanny pack slides. Shit is crazy as hell and genius at the same time

    — A Chi Type Of Guy (@SharpChedaGetta) 6:35 PM – May 30, 2018 There’s not an exact price or release date yet, as these have just been leaked on streetwear forums and websites, but Hypebeast have confirmed these will ‘hit retailers soon’.

    They’d better get a move on for the holiday season, as I reckon these would be a total hit in Ibiza once the season starts.

    Accessorise your dad bod with this dad footwear, and keep snacks with you on the go. Sounds like the dream.


  2. Couldn’t stop laughing and couldn’t bring myself to vote…says the guy who went into the restaurant last night carrying his glasses (reading only and sunglasses)in a glass pack, wallet (too thick to put in my pocket…wear it in a front pocket…can’t stand wallets in back pockets…uncomfortable to sit on…yet it’s now too thick and in the front pocket causes too many stares from the curious), cell phone and car keys. Both hands full of stuff….hmm….just can’t bring myself to use one!! I think I should just pile my crap into my wife’s purse, but pretty soon that will need wheels for her to carry everything! What to do…what to do…LOL


  3. I bought my waist pouch when I visited the US and Canada back in the early 1990s, Diane. I still have it, although I don’t wear it now. In fact, come to think of it, I think there’s still a selection of US and Canadian coins in there. I shall have to hunt it out. ‘Fanny pack’ still makes me laugh. No Cringe. No laugh.


  4. I love the idea of a waist pouch, and back in the day I definitely wore one. It’s awfully hard to pick pocket a waist pouch and I lived in a crowded city so it was ideal. As I got older I realized that if I had to actually look for what I needed in it I’d have to risk looking ridiculous or take it off, and kind of defeated the purpose. ~sigh


    • I know what you mean about the issue of looking for stuff – I often feel a little self-conscious groping around in my crotch area with people watching. But I don’t feel self-conscious enough to stop… 😉


  5. All right I need another category to vote. I bought a waist pouch ( it will always be fanny pack to me) for a cycling trip in Peru. The issue was I couldn’t get everything I needed into it such as a spare set of legs and lungs. So I haven’t had the heart to thrown it out but I definitely do not wear it in public. However I often wear a money belt when travelling so that’s like a mini me of the waist pouch.


    • “…a spare set of legs and lungs” – LOL! That’s what I’d need if I were ever going to attempt even a fraction of the cycling you do! And your money belt sounds like a very practical option, especially in some of the places where you travel. As usual, I’ll enjoy your experiences from the comfort and safety of my own home. 🙂


  6. I too have been a “closet fanny pack” wearer and lover. What is more convenient than the aforementioned article when cruising a flea market, yard sale or any occasion where it is necessary to use both hands to check out something? They carry just enough — driver’s license, money, checkbook, keys, lipstick and a tissue. I have found another use for one of my older ones — to hold my “smart” cell phone while I am riding my lawn tractor mowing my 7.7 acres (in case I have a problem – which I’ve been known to have). Belt clips and clips for my pockets don’t work for me, but my reliable “fp” always stays with me. I would definitely would say that we are trend setters.


  7. Nope. Just nope. And over here across the proverbial pond, yup, fanny means, er… well, NOT bum 🤗
    We always had a good giggle whenever that show The Nanny came on and the theme song goes “what was she to do, where was she to go, she was out on her fanny”…. the mind boggles.


  8. I love my fanny pack, and I don’t care who calls it what! Freedom is having your hands free. It also forces me to carry as few articles as will fit in, unlike my handbags, which carry tons more stuff and is therefore much heavier. as far as I’m concerned, fashion has nothing to do with it.


    • You’re right about the limitation of size and contents! That’s what I like about mine, too – it forces me to pare down what I carry; but it also means everything is jammed in there so tightly that it doesn’t move, which is perfect. I can find anything in that waist pouch in ten seconds in the dark with one hand; unlike the days when I used to carry a purse and I could root around in there in broad daylight for ten minutes without finding what I wanted.


  9. I was introduced to them as, “butt packs.” As in worn near the butt. Since my butt is on the large size, and my waist in front is larger than average – well there just isn’t much room for a pack anywhere around my middle. I use a backpack when needed or just go without. Actually, I find a small “Visa” card gets me most things I need while traveling…


    • That’s our philosophy of travel, too. Even though we take a lot of day trips out back of beyond, we’re never more than a few hours away from someplace that will take a credit card so we can buy anything we need. And the best part is, credit cards coordinate beautifully with any outfit!

      Liked by 1 person

  10. I admire your persistence in the face of societal condemnation, Diane! 😀

    I’m more of the Mary Poppins’ carpetbag school, myself, if I’m going any distance. Otherwise, I take what will fit in my pockets and everything else stays home.

    The Dad belly bag is both hilarious and eye-searing at the same time 🙂


    • Ha! ‘Eye-searing’ is the perfect description! It’s one of those things that I’d love to wear just for the sheer hilarity of seeing everybody else recoil… but I couldn’t bring myself to actually touch it, much less wear it. Brrr!


    • I wanted to include pictures but I couldn’t because I don’t own the rights to the photos. But doing a Google search for ‘fanny pack’ brought up an amazing number of photos and retailers. I had no idea that waist pouches were so popular now!


  11. Go you! They are definitely convenient, no doubt, but I’ll never wear one again. When I travel, I use a small purse I sling over my neck and shoulder and that seems to do the trick.

    It’s funny, because ever since I learned what the word ‘fanny’ meant in the UK, I’ve tried to stop using it in my writing. The word could be quite a shock to someone not familiar with American lingo!

    ‘Colostomy bag’ –Ha, let’s hope it never comes to that.


    • I definitely hope I’ll never need a real colostomy bag, but it seemed like an appropriate nickname considering how much shit I cram in my waist pouch!

      ‘Fanny’ wasn’t a word I used frequently anyway; and once I discovered its alternate meaning I haven’t used it at all. But now I wonder how many other double entendres I might have created solely through ignorance of other slang words…?


    • I used to like the crossbody bags until our place of employment had a guest speaker come in on safety. One of his questions was to ask the proper way to wear a bag safely. My guess was the crossbody. His reply was no — not unless we were prepared to be dragged or chocked. That made such am impression I’ve forgotten the safest way he suggested.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Yikes. Yet another reason why a waist pouch is a better solution. Those nylon buckles are strong enough not to let go under normal load, but they’ll break loose under major strain… and even if they don’t, at least you can reach the clasp to free yourself. Safety first! 🙂


  12. My forever philosophy on the subject: Fashion is what I make it. Thus, if I should happen to wear approximately the same thing that every other male of my generation is wearing, then think of my attire as urban cammo. I am choosing, at that moment, to blend in. If I choose to wear something else, then think anything you wish.

    The same goes for everybody else. I’m pretty much equal opportunity in that regard…but I still reserve the right to snicker. As does everybody else, of course.

    Rock that waist pouch sista. Own it.

    And Book 13 looks like it’s about two paragraphs and a “The End” away from first-draft completion. MOST excellent!! You tho rock, thithta!


    • Thankth! I’ve been on the road for the past week so I didn’t make measurable progress, but now that I’m home, look out! The End is coming soon! (In a good way.) 😉

      And I like your fashion philosophy – the idea of blending in with urban camo is truly brilliant!

      Liked by 1 person

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