Hands up if you think designer handbags are stupidly expensive? Of course you do: it's hard to argue otherwise when they come with four-figure price tags.
So the news that Joseph – long-time purveyor of sleek and realistic fashion – is launching its debut handbag collection at Selfridges from today is most welcome. They're brilliant and they're a third of the price of most designer bags. Clutches are around £200 and shoppers about £400.
Obviously Joseph would probably be keener to highlight the fact that these bags are designed in conjunction with accessories starKatie Hillier than they would be to shout: "Hey, look, we're posh but cheap." But the Joseph bags are at the forefront of a trend we're rather snappily calling "price-backlash bags".
Desa, a Turkish brand that has been manufacturing designer bags for major international labels for the last 40 years has just relaunched its own-label collection, also with price tags between £200 and £400. It's the same quality as designs from major-league labels but far better priced. "Minus the cost of the branding," is how new creative director Yossi Cohen puts it. The summer collection is good but the coming autumn collection is even better.
It's likely that the price-backlash-bag trend will gather pace. As Erin Moscow, head of accessories at Selfridges comments there is a "huge appetite for luxury design at more accessible price points". In the meantime, we'll keep you updated on designer bags you might actually be able to afford.
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