Porter Yoshida Kaban: Japanese Durables with a Cult Status – Tenue de Nîmes

Porter Yoshida, why we love the brand. 

Porter Yoshida Kaban, est.1962, is an understated yet cult accessories label. Porter, produced exclusively in Japan, applies the highest standards to its designs and manufacturing. 

The story of Porter Yoshida began when its founder, Kichizo Yoshida, established his first bag making atelier in 1935. The company's first major test came with the Second World War, when Yoshida and many of his craftsmen were called upon for military service. In his absence, Yoshida's wife had to hide his tools which luckily survived the aerial attacks during the war. Thanks to the stylish and innovative designs, Yoshida & Co.'s bags became immensely popular during the 1950s, especially after Japanese Empress Emiki Michiko was seen on television sporting a Porter Yoshida bag. 

Kichizo Yoshida - founder of Porter Yoshida (through www.bulangandsons.com)

Traditionally, the types of fabric the Japanese used for their clothing and travel gear was a way of showcasing the social class they belonged to. In ancient Japan, one could distinguish a member from the working class by his cotton bag, while a wealthier person would parade their leather goods.

In the golden sixties, Yoshida Kaban had the brilliant idea of blending these very separate worlds by creating a new fabric all together: nylon. This durable material repels dirt and water and ages beautifully, just like leather, while looking timeless and feeling light, like cotton. This means the bags both stay in style and last a lifetime. 

A craftsman working on a hand-made Porter bag (Image through Carryology) 

Porter’s iconic Tanker collection is its most popular collection, which was launched in 1983. The collection is based on the classic U.S. Air Force ‘Rescue Orange’ pilot bomber jacket. Stranded war pilots would wear their jackets, which had an orange lining, inside-out in case of emergency landings: this way they would be seen from high above. Find this collection in our store in the beautiful Sage Green, Iron Blue, and black colours. Their Force collection draws from the same inspiration, utilizing high density nylon. Yet, for this collection Porter opts for more subtle colors like black, navy and olive drab. Nylon isn't the only fabric used for Porter accessories, they also use canvas and even leather! 

Porter bags are technical and practical re-workings everyday of essential accessories. From the Waist Bag, built to ensure everyday essentials are right at your fingertips, to the Briefcase, suitable for commuting with a large notebook: Porter has got you covered.  

All Porter items feature a highly durable shell, multiple zip pockets, adjustable straps and padding. We have multiple different colors ranging from the classic olive and orange combo to a beige and black canvas. 

A durable, military-inspired accessory fuelled by Porter-Yoshida’s street-savvy expertise: which one will you pick? Shop the collection here!