In the days of yore, or at least Paris Hilton circa 2004, designer accessories were simple. You spent a whack of money on an it bag, maybe stuck a small dog in it, and hung it over a lackadaisical arm. That’s no longer hot (soz Paris). It’s a brave new world in 2015, where it bag is a dirty word, simple shapes such as backpacks and bucket bags rule and accessories come with accessories.
See Fendi’s Strap You concept. The Italian brand, known for its sometimes controversial work with fur, is releasing a series of straps to wear with its bags, and they come in exotic leathers, or with coloured studs. A distinctly luxe take on customisation, they follow the brand’s now cult bag bugs, offcuts of fur given funny faces and worn as charms on bags by the likes of Cara Delevigne, Kourtney Kardashian and Rita Ora. Forget changing your bag to match your outfit, now it’s all done with the click of a strap.
This is clearly designed for the mega-rich woman who has money for follow fashion’s every whim. With a Fendi bag usually priced at around £1,000, the straps costing about £640, and the bag bugs £540 upwards – the full outlay is equivalent to a hefty mortgage payment. Or, to put it in fashion terms, for the same amount of money, said woman could buy a Tom Ford and a Chloe bag and come away with change.
With labels like that namechecked, this is not the world of the high-street shopper. But the influence of high-end concepts such as this – augmenting everyday objects – is working its way down to normal people’s budgets. Just look at your phone, probably covered in a case resembling anything from a bag of popcorn to a penguin complete with wings. Or your handbag, which more than likely comes with some trinket or other hanging off it. From changing the laces in your trainers to adding a cluster of badges on the pocket of your denim jacket or changing the strap on your Pop Swatch, customisation like this has been there already.
These are the little things that make fashion fun. Interchangeable straps for handbags might be a crazy frivolity but in the current handbag moment, that hits the sweet spot. Picking your strap to go with your outfit in the morning is only a matter of time.
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