Let’s cut right to the chase: You need both a wallet and a money clip. Although you may pay with your mobile phone wherever possible, you still need to carry your driver’s license and miscellaneous credit and debit cards. And even as paper money verges on obsolescence, you at least need spare bills on hand so you can dole out tips. A pocketful of crisp greenbacks in small denominations is an indispensible lubricant for the man about town.
Because a bulging billfold is neither stylish nor comfortable, use a slim wallet for your cards and offload your cash to a money clip. Nostalgic items such as ticket stubs and photographs should be left at home or stored in your briefcase or backpack. (If you must keep your lucky ticket from that Rush concert in 1980 close at hand, simply photograph it with your phone.)
Ideally, you’ll have at least two wallets to give yourself options for pairing with different looks. A breast pocket wallet is an elegant choice when you’re wearing a suit or sportcoat. A wallet for your pants pocket needs to be considerably smaller, of course.
As for money clips, regard them as a kind of jewelry. They can be simple or ornate, depending on the formality of your look and the watch, cuff links and so forth that you’re wearing. If the money clip is covered in an exotic leather, the color should approximately match your belt and shoes. If the clip is made of metal, the primary color should match your watch and cuff links.