What makes a great EDC?
What is this EDC thing?
EDC or Everyday Carry is the concept of having regular items on your person every day. These are the things you choose to have with you at all times. This might just be a wallet, or you might carry a wallet and a pocket knife. You might go all out and need extra pockets just to survive the day. All of these fall under the concept of 'Everyday Carry'.
Below, we will look at some of the things to consider when choosing your EDC, and some of the parts of a great EDC.
Pick a style or theme.
First, I find that the key to a great EDC is having a theme or style. Sometimes this is a coherent aesthetic to the items, or maybe you have a level of function you want to maintain across the entire set. Dark and metal, light wood, skeletonized aluminum, bright plastic and flowers. All are valid types of EDC, though I personally wouldn't go for the flowers. Pick something that sings to you. As an example, I tend to go for dark stone-washed metal and black G-10. The 'black and tac' type of tactical, functional gear that shows an interested in stealth and high build quality.
The parts of an EDC setup.
The following parts are all items you can base the rest of your items on. Find a knife you really like? Love the way a specific wallet works? Try basing the rest of your gear on the theme of these items. The satisfaction of matching everything will surprise you.
- Wallet These carry your information, your identity, and often-times, your money. Find a model that looks and feels the way you want it to. Do not skimp on build quality here, these get used. Heavily.
- Phone & Case No surprise here, the choice of phone has become very personal. The same is said for the case. Simply put, find something that fits your style, gives you the function you want, and don't be afraid to change this up often.
- Knife Where legal, you should carry some sort of pocket-knife. They are far too useful to not. Look first and the local laws and regulations on this. From there, go with the size and style that you won't mind carrying with you all the time.
There are so many options from your standard Victorinox or Swiss Army, all the way up to a large fixed blade (if you can find a place to put it). I personally have numerous knives that I can choose from. I have more or less taken up the collecting of knives because of this.
- Watch If you wear a watch, you will want a quality one. (If you aren't horrible about losing them at least.) Be aware of features like Solar charging, Atomic Clock automatic set, and automatic mechanical movements. I swear by my G-Shock because of the long term reliability and durability. Solar/Atomic means that I have gone years without having to adjust the time or replace the battery. Not sure how I can live without this now.
- Pen Having a writing implement handy is always nice. There are many options available that are small and lightweight. You can also go for something larger and more comfortable to hold, or metal and durable. I personally go back and forth between my Fisher Space Pen and a Bolt-action custom piece. These are even better if you also carry a small pocket notebook like the ones I list below.
- Keychain This could almost be a subject all it's own. The number of options available to help you organize and enhance your keys is staggering. Expandability, security, and durability are key when looking at items here.
Some extras you can add...
- Tools This is a fairly open category. Generally meant to include things like multi-tools, screwdriver sets, and custom tools related to a specific profession. I will leave this one up to your imagination.
- Notebook Having a place to jot down notes at a moment's notice is always handy. Whether it's something like a small Moleskine or the ever-popular Field Notes, you should consider having something like these on your person.
- Fidget Toys With the recent mass adoption of fidget-spinners, this has brought an oft-forgotten part of EDC to light for the general population. Long-time advocates of EDC will tell you that they have always loved something to fiddle with when they were bored as part of their daily carry. There are a LOT of options here. Fidget-spinners, spinning tops, and even crazy little fidget toys with switches and buttons designed for just this purpose. I even know one friend that uses a trainer Balisong (bladeless butterfly knife) as something to play with. Though he does have to be careful where he is when he goes to flip it about.
Should you count a firearm as EDC?
You certainly can, depending on locale and legality.
I do, since it is legal for me to carry a concealed weapon where I live (with a permit). This is a personal choice, and while I consider my gun to be a part of my EDC, it isn't a requirement for everyone.