More Idiotic Things To Waste Your Money On

I own like 3 or 4 Ikea bags that I use for stupid things like sorting laundry and hauling around Monitors (won’t quite fit a 32″ which I just wrap in towels and strap into the back seat) and the reason I have them is that they’re strong, cheap, and ultimately disposable. They’re less expensive than reusable grocery bags (I like the woven ones which are handy for cleaning up the loose stuff you want to bring on a trip but forgot to pack where they belonged), the problem is that they’re too big and tend to be a heavy lift. Also (I’m 5′ 10″, pretty average for a guy) the shoulder straps don’t work for my height and just get tangled up inside or outside the bag.

So it’s not without flaws that better design couldn’t fix.

But if you have more bucks than brains and are incredibly vain, fashion conscious, and don’t give a damn about intellectual property rights (well, 2 out of 4) you can spend 2150% more for a genuine Balenciaga Bag.

I’m not kidding.

Flat-pack fashion: Ikea takes swipe at Balenciaga’s $2,150 shopping bag
by Hannah Marriott, The Guardian
Wednesday 26 April 2017

Remember the last time you lugged a bag of stuff around Ikea? Remember how your back strained; how the scratchy handles tore at the skin on your palms and turned your fingers blue? Well here’s some interesting news from the world of fashion: that, right there, was you living your best, most aspirational life. That was your big style moment.

Because Ikea shopping bags are where it’s at in fashion in 2017. The hottest name to drop right now is not Kate or Naomi; it is Frakta.

Balenciaga – the most influential label in fashion at the moment – has released a $2,150 (£1,365) tote that looks uncannily like an Ikea shopper. With its trapezoidal shape, giant size, and colour – a vibrant shade of EU-flag blue – the similarities are impossible to ignore. The double strap feature, with one long set of handles to hoist over the shoulder, one short to be held in the hand, cinches it. The internet has exploded, of course, and Ikea has reacted cannily, issuing a handy guide to spotting a real Frakta shopping bag. Distinguishing features, according to the advert, are as follows: if it rustles, it’s real; it costs $0.99 (40p in the UK); it’s easily cleaned with a hose.

We can file this trend between “arty” and “opportunistic” – it is fashion attempting to say something arch and Duchampian about consumerism and branding, while making a joke that will guarantee a very profitable flurry of excitement on Instagram. But it’s not all bad: after years of micro-clutches that barely fit your keys it is also very practical. This is fashion that inspires recognition and emotion: to behold that Balenciaga tote is to be transported to the tills on an unremarkable but productive Sunday afternoon. You can almost smell the meatballs.

Yes I’ve had Ikea meatballs and they aren’t all that though they don’t suck and I’ve assembled their furniture which is not as trivial as it sounds but that doesn’t suck either unless you don’t follow the directions and do it wrong.

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