I NEVER KNEW ANOTHER wallet before my last one. A birthday gift from my grandmother when I turned 13, it came to me generic and plain, dark brown leather without the slightest wrinkled expression. I didn’t have much disposable income at the time, but every 13-year old man needs a wallet.
It was my photo album for tiny school pictures traded on playgrounds, the place for gift cards sent from invisible relatives (often for stores/restaurants not in my town), a scrapbook of movie ticket stubs from the first fantastically awkward dates. I’d seen my father’s wallet, black, bulging, brick-like, and hoped I’d get there some day.
But after 11 years of financial services, I knew it was time to put the tattered behemoth down. It wasn’t for appearance–it has the vintage look designer brands probably aspire to–but the fact that like a retired NFL lineman, after 10 years of stress and impact it had doubled in size and weight and become floppy and held together by a few stitches.
The dozen or so card slots I’d once meticulously organized had been empty for a year. Now I just shoved everything in one gaping slot like a portable pants pocket.
It had also become impossible to bear sitting on any hard surface for longer than a couple minutes. Waiters would arrive upon my slamming the wallet on the table, sighing in relief. “Oh, sorry, I’m not ready to pay, I just couldn’t feel my leg.”
So knowing it was time, I started looking for a replacement. But from stacks of designer knockoffs in Istanbul to monographable moneyclips in New York, nothing seemed to fit quite right, and I even felt a little guilty, like trying to replace a lost pet. As I looked I could feel the pain in my right ass cheek getting worse.
Eventually though, I saw a friend’s Toddland wallet and was intrigued–perhaps I should be looking for something a little less traditional–and after some easy Googling, I came across the website for Mighty Wallets, and knew I’d found a match.
Mighty Wallets are made of Tyvek, the material that you see coating unfinished houses and that Express Mail envelopes are made of. It’s incredibly strong but also very light and dynamically stretches and re-shrinks depending on how much cash/cards you’re rolling around with.
The Mighty Wallet is one of those rare products that actually lives up to everything it says it is. “Mighty Thin, Mighty Strong, Mighty Green,” is its promo line, and nothing could be more accurate.
Look elsewhere if you want complex organization. Mighty Wallets only have two cash compartments and two expanding slots for cards/wallet fodder. But in terms of design, you’ll find nothing more unique. In addition to its solid material (that after some wear actually has a similar texture to US dollar bills), the wallets come in dozens of interesting designs, from artful collages to cartoon logos to blank ones you can draw upon.
I picked the NYC subway map design, helpful for anyone in Manhattan and additionally acting as a stealth cover as most people will probably think it’s just a map.
For $15 (shipping is free), this is a pretty awesome product. I don’t know if this is going to pass the 11-year test that I put my last wallet through, but so far it seems up for the ride.