The It-Bag Conundrum


The Pashli.

Phillip's unassuming, little leathery bundle of vestiary perfection is exactly what sparked off our rant introspective into the It Bag last weekend.  A discussion between us, which we thought we'd share with you since it involves our beloved topic of fashion.

If not for the annoying popularity of said Pashli, I would be sitting here now holding aloft my (then envisioned) Bangkok purchase and this post would have never been conceived.  Of course, you all know that I: 1. never got a Pashli because they were sold out; and 2: settled for the Speedy 25 instead out of it being a pure "classic".  It so happened that S too was on a simultaneous path of bag-lust and had fallen in lust with the Pashli.  As was K (of Render Sublime).  And so I partook in two rather involved conversations about why we wanted it so badly, but on the other hand, had all experienced the collective feeling that feeding into the It-Bag trend of 2012 would get old rather quickly.  

There is something about the It-Bag that gets us going en masse.  Almost daily I see the Trio, the Trapeze, the Antigona, the Pashli, and more - a plethora of last year's most desirable bags.  And what more is that these desirable bags hang off the arms of desirable women who have lives that are probably more desirable than mine.  It's desire overload!  Those bags are also hideously expensive!  Therefore, what I think my illogical brain does is saunters over and slips me a neuronal napkin on which it is written "whoever owns those are damn cool and have their s*** sorted".  It's a status symbol; a symptom of affluenza, duh!  Thus of course, along I trot, longing after the next and the next.

S & I do, however, have a logical side to our brains, and we got a-thinking about the downsides to buying into the It-Bag craze.  You see, an It-Bag only has its time in the sun for so long until it gets old, and a younger, more attractive It-Bag sidles in and takes its place.  And as the Man Repeller's article most adeptly puts it: "the only thing that seems worse than wearing something outdated is wearing something outdated for which you overpaid for with the sole purpose of it being on trend".  Ouch.  Our other major gripe is that S & I are searching for individuality in a (blogger) world where every new cool thing saturates the blogosphere and simultaneously becomes more detestable to us whilst boosting street-style cred.  As much as we enjoy the craftsmanship and quality poured into our dear little Pashli and Trio, we have for the moment resolved to watch from afar for this very matter.

Will choosing to buy a bag that never reaches It-Bag status solve our personal conundrum?  But on the other hand, (to play devil's advocate) why drop a money-bomb on a expensive yet unrecognisable designer bag when you could get a cheaper alternative which garners the same level of attention?  

Something to think about whilst stroking your nappa leather.



  1. Grat post! Love that bag!!


    1. We love it too Melany, but what are your thoughts on buying into It Bag trends? xx

  2. I know what you mean! I still remember how the Mulberry Alexa was the new "It" thing and then the Celine bag was everywhere and so on, so forth.

    I just don't know if I could drop that kind of money on a bag that I might fall out of love with, a year or two down the track...


  3. I could and will keep using the same handbag for years on end (usually until they're completely and utterly worn out), whether they're designer or not. So what I'm trying to say is, while I appreciate It Bags for the craftsmanship and imaginary lifestyles they reveal, I myself get along fine with my high street bags. And while each It Bag has an air of exclusivity, answer this: what do you see on the street more - mass produced bags or the It Bags? I'd go with the latter, tenfold.

    But then again, perhaps that is the size of my bank account talking. Or not.

  4. So glad you wrote about this - well said!! I'm STILL going out of my head.. since talking to you I played with the idea of the Obsedia again. I absolutely love it and it never reached It status.. but i cant bring myself to drop the money on it! I'm still thinking that I'll never buy an It bag. But never say never....

    Great article! xx

    1. Buuuut... then you did finally cave in ;)
      Nice choice lady!

      xx T

  5. I'm so annoyed that GFC is being rid of haha

    anyways, love the Pashli, esp. the mini size (too adorable)
    I never have the funds to afford an it bag but a girl can dream!
    I'd actually just like a plain black boxy side bag in great quality leather. that would be perfect!


    1. Re: the plain black boxy side bag - we are in the same boat! Come on, somebody just make something perfect!

  6. About 2 yrs ago, I caught the it-bag bug and hunted for a Celine Nano, but was unsuccessful and gave up. Now I see Luggage Totes EVERWHERE, and I am sooo glad I never got one. I'm okay with spending the same amount of money on a bag that is not as recognizable, b/c I'm paying for the quality & design of the bag, not for the it-factor.

  7. I know this may sound naive, but perhaps the best way to buy a bag is to be oblivious about the it-bags. Otherwise it just gets too complicated and worrisome.
    I 'accidentally' bought an it-bag without knowing it was one... and just fell in love with it and have used it since! (for about 2 years now)

    1. That's quite a good way to do it - it takes the lust-factor out of the choice and (hopefully) brings it back to quality and construction. And puts the love back into the design!

  8. I may be a bit late to the convo but YES YES YES. I mean, who am I to talk; I don't have over 2 Grand Buckaroos sitting in my bank account just waiting to be whipped out in exchange for some overly-prices pebble leather.. but still. Nobody looks for the style in anything anymore, they just see the sporadic crazes. Which is sad.


  9. The It status is such a conundrum...I don't think you can be involved in fashion and remain oblivious, it's impossible. The buzz is always around, and as one learns to recognise something it's hard to ignore that social impact.

    I think one has to consider what magical factors have combined to create 'It'. One can assume (or at least, would expect!) luxury fabrication and craftsmanship, but beyond that? Functionality? A not-before-seen-en-masse shape or hardware detail? The option to come in different sizes and finishes seems to be big one - but presumably that is for monetising and comes after It status has been reached.

    I try to ask myself: If that bag, sans pedigree but with the same level of quality, was in a vintage store, would I buy it for a quarter of the price (still many hundreds of dollars)? The answer has never been yes for me yet...

    1. Agreed - Rachel suggested above remaining oblivious, but it's not an option if you're being bombarded with the same pictures daily.
      I guess it also boils down to how much emphasis you want to place on said pedigree in relation to quality and construction. I personally am guilty of being brand-oriented when it comes to purchasing bags in particular, because I guess to me it implies that there is a standard of quality (damn, their marketing has won over my brain). Whether or not this is true is another matter. Then I guess for other people, their priorities don't specifically lie in craftsmanship but rather branding and luxury status, which is their own choice to make (however foolish it might seem sometimes).

      Whatever floats your boat I think!


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