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Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Handbag Debate: Inspired vs Authentic Handbags

From top to bottom and left to right:

Buti Charm Drop Hobo $574 via Forzieri vs Celine Bittersweet Hobo $1200 via Neiman Marcus

Forzieri Grommet Hobo $248 via Forzieri vs Jimmy Choo Ramona Tote $1850 via Neiman Marcus

Maschera Suede & Leather Satchel $235 via Forzieri vs Gucci Pelham Shoulder Bag $2095 via Neiman Marcus

Forzieri Leather Flap Hobo $489 via Forzieri vs Dior Rebel Leather & Suede Hobo $1034 via Neiman Marcus

Most women are unaware of the copyright or intellectual property infringement problems plaguing the world of fashion design. With an increase in blatant "knock offs" of other designers coming from mass-market retail chains as well as an increase in the number of affected designers taking legal action to remedy the situation, it's time to ask where the root of the problem lies. Is it a simple case of "supply and demand"? A retailer like Forever 21 wouldn't produce astonishingly similar merchandise to that of more expensive and exclusive designer labels if there weren't women lining around the corner to help them fly off the racks. I understand the temptation is overwhelming in some cases. Most of us cannot afford to stock our closets with wall-to-wall designer clothing, but there are always options. Is it really necessary to buy a dead-on knockoff dress for $15 and contribute to the cycle? I know what my answer is, but I'm interested in hearing some of yours. I thought I'd put it into perspective with a few examples of eerily similar "inspired" bags and their more expensive authentic designer counterparts. So what do we think, ladies. Are "inspired" handbags (or other fashion items) OK or No Way?


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