The Luxury Wallet Brands Worthy Of Your Hard-Earned Cash
How you carry your cash and cards gives an insight into your appreciation of the finer details of life, so we’ve curated a list of the best luxury brands producing the most desired wallets today.
A good wallet is priceless, and not just because of the cargo it carries. As anyone who has ever misplaced theirs can testify, a wallet is a uniquely personal thing that keeps your precious cash, cards and whatever else safe and contained, while also offering a glimpse of your personality, style and attention to detail.
So, what makes a good wallet great? There are a number of factors, most notably quality of materials, the skill of the craftsmanship, the design and, yes, the brand cachet attributed to all of those things.
A great wallet will last a lifetime, therefore it should be crafted from the finest leather so that it ages well. In that respect, it also needs to be timeless given its longevity, so iconic branding from centuries-old luxury houses adds heritage and class. In the same vein, a minimalistic wallet design will stand the test of time and is a more understated approach.
The finest luxury wallet brands in 2022
The list of luxury wallet makers we have curated tick all the boxes above. It includes some of the world’s most revered leather goods specialists as well as renowned luxury houses – regards the latter, the price tag is perhaps a measure of the brand cachet rather than the intrinsic quality of the build. In fact, peeking behind the curtain, most luxury branded wallets – outside of the artisanal makers – will likely be produced by the same three manufacturers in Italy.
When it comes to purchasing, it’s a balance you’ll need to weigh up for yourself. But make no mistake, these are some of the most exclusive and stylish wallet brands on the market today.
Founded in 1792, Parisian house Goyard began life as a luxury trunk maker and has since become the doyenne of small leather goods, with a signature geometric print that is recognised the world over. Not only does it have the brand cachet but the quality is there too – its wallets are handmade to the most meticulous standards using its Vauzelles calfskin and Goyardine canvas.
From slim billfolds such as the Saint-Thomas to bigger more expansive travel wallets such as the Richelieu (coming in a kaleidoscope of colour options), Goyard genuinely sets the bar for high-end men’s wallets. It also provides a personalisation service for a truly individual product.
Established in 1934 and still in the family today, British heritage brand and Royal Warrant holder Ettinger is a consummate leather goods specialist, handmaking a splendid array of modern billfolds, coat wallets and more.
Ettinger uses, for the most part, extremely soft yet durable bridle and calf leathers that have been vegetable tanned, designed with contrast tone leather interiors, so that when you flip open your wallet, those in the know will know.
With a minimalistic and classic design motif, its wallets can also be personalised with your initials for that extra level of distinction.
Asprey’s luxury heritage is second-to-none, having been founded in 1781 by one William Apsrey. Think of Asprey like a British Hermès, devoted to creating the most luxurious of items in the most chic and timeless aesthetic. Hence, you won’t find gaudy or trend-led wallets in Asprey’s collection.
The house focuses on minimalistic styles using the very best materials on earth, from saddle leather and bullskin to more exotic hides. That the brand holds a Royal Warrant from the Prince of Wales tells you all you need to know about its prestige.
Louis Vuitton’s heritage as a luxury luggage maker may seem like a long time back in its history, but the luxury Parisian brand still applies the meticulous standards of trunkmaking to its small leather goods.
With the iconic monogram motif front and centre of its wallet collection, it has created a number of different styles in embossed calfskin or the brand’s signature coated canvas. Alternatively, if the monogram is too obvious and you prefer something more understated, Louis Vuitton’s Damier checkerboard has also been applied to its wallets to great effect.
Whichever you choose, you’re sure to turn a few heads when you pull one of these wallets from your pocket.
Bottega Veneta, the Italian leather specialist founded in 1966, has long been both recognised and renowned for its ‘intrecciato’ designs, which involve the precise weaving of leather strips to create a basket-like fabric.
Applied to its wallets, this intrecciato effect brings texture and tactility to the super-soft calfskin creations. Available in an assortment of bright contrast colour configurations, its billfold wallets are an extremely sophisticated and stylish way to carry your cash and cards.
For a brand as revered for its timeless style and dedication to craft as Cartier, one would expect its wallets to be up there with the best. And they do not disappoint. The luxury French house has applied the same attention to detail to its small leather goods as it does its esteemed watches and jewellery, creating a broad selection of billfolds crafted from impossibly soft calfskin and embossed with the ‘double C’ logo.
Far from ostentatious, Cartier’s wallets are understated and refined, preferring muted tones such as black, burgundy, grey, midnight blue and green.
Established in 1887, Smythson of Bond Street stands for time-honoured craftsmanship and dedication to tradition, which is why its wallet collection should definitely be on your radar.
Understated yet sophisticated, its selection of billfolds and travel wallets are handcrafted in Italy from some some exquisite leathers. A prime example is its Ludlow calf leather, which has the soft feel of deerskin but is more robust, as well as being ‘tumbled’ – a treatment that brings out the natural grain of the hide.
These are not flashy pieces by any means, but rather quietly assured items of the highest standard for the man who doesn’t need the world to know his business.
Under the direction of Alessandro Michele, the Italian fashion giant has single-handedly brought maximalism into the mainstream, but its men’s wallets are decidedly more understated than the clothing would have you believe.
Gucci has long championed a timeless accessory, not least its horsebit loafers. So it goes with the house’s wallets. With the interlocking Gs a key motif across the collection (whether embossed, printed or hardware), Gucci uses leather and canvas throughout a variety of styles, from elegant black billfolds to more contemporary options such as the Ophidia wallet with its house codes and gold hardware.
Founded in 1895 by Italian Alessandro Berluti, his eponymous brand has always been famed for its leather shoes, most notably its wholecut Oxford made out of a single piece of leather. The house’s expertise with leather artisanship is therefore second-to-none, so you can expect true expressions of luxury throughout its wallets and small leather goods.
Berluti uses Venezia calfskin leather and applies the stunning gradient patina for which it is renowned for. Its ‘Scritto’ line is also unique, thanks to the embossed vintage calligraphy applied to the exterior.
Given that Saint Laurent’s mainline collections are typically filled with svelte silhouettes in an overwhelmingly black palette, it’s no surprise then that its collection of men’s wallets falls right in line.
Sleek and sophisticated in equal measure, the brand’s black minimalist billfold calfskin wallets are the epitome of Parisian chic, featuring just the subtlest hint of gold hardware branding. Yes, there are other colours available, as well as embossed leather treatments too, but to be honest, nothing quite beats the pared-back beauty of the classic.
Ever since Tom Ford established his eponymous brand in 2005 it has been an outlet for the designer’s creative classicism.
Ford does tradition better than anyone, transforming timeless silhouettes with contemporary tweaks to create something for the archives every single time. The same goes for his wallets, which come in a range of beautiful calfskin fabrics and almost exclusively in black (his one deviation is a camo-print style).
If you want confidently understated, Ford has it in spades.
Compared to its Parisian peers, Givenchy’s luxury wallets push the envelope in terms of contemporary styling. Naturally, it produces sumptuous leather calfskin wallets with minimal branding, but it also has created a wealth of modern iterations featuring louder branding in some cases, or zeitgeist motifs in others (we’re looking at you 101 Dalmatians print).
Its two-tone leather styles are very chic, although if you want something a little more ‘expressive’ then you’d do well to check out its camo styles.
Founded in 1919 by Cristobel Balenciaga and now under the direction of Demna Gvasalia, Balenciaga is without doubt the hottest brand of the moment. Just when you think its momentum is going to fizzle out, it produces another iconic garment to keep it at the top of fashion’s pecking order. Hence why a Balenciaga wallet in your back pocket is spilling over with brand cachet.
Despite the avant garde and subversive nature of its mainline collections, the wallets are actually pretty sedate, with classic billfolds and mini wallets in calfskin leather, embellished with a variety of different logo treatments.