We have to give the Olsen twins credit for being among only a handful of celebrities who have successfully transitioned from being actresses or singers to being fashion designers. They helm several different lines sold at various price points, including high end label The Row, contemporary collection Elizabeth & James, casual contemporary line TEXTILE Elizabeth and James, a t-shirt line called StyleMint, and even a clothing line for juniors at J.C. Penney called Olsenboye. Earlier this year, the Council of Fashion Designers of America honored them as the top womenswear designers of the year for The Row.
Despite all their success, we still question some of the choices these identical moguls make. For instance, they designed a $39,000 backpack last year. You read that right – $39,000! As a part of their new handbag collection for The Row, Mary-Kate and Ashley designed the backpack out of crocodile skin. The bag’s massive price tag isn’t the most shocking part though. According to Ashley, “it was the first thing that sold off the shelf.” Amanda Brooks, Barney’s Fashion Director at the time, saw the bag as an investment piece and insisted that if there was ever a bag to spend so much on, this was it. The backpack incorporated enough design to be “interesting and beautiful,” but was still classic.
Now, after making headlines for that backpack, the Olsens are at it again. Only this time, the expensive bag they designed isn’t such a classic. The designers teamed up with artist Damien Hirst and online retailer Just One Eye to create backpacks decorated with polka dots and fake prescription pills designed by Hirst, which are “meticulously applied to front, back, and straps.” The backpacks, which are made in Italy of black patent leather Nile crocodile, are described as “one-of-a-kind wearable art work” and are each signed by Hirst himself. Very few of the backpacks were created, which isn’t surprising given each bag’s $55,000 price tag.
The backpacks will be available starting December 12, after which you have to call Just One Eye to inquire about purchasing and shipping. A portion of the proceeds of each bag will be donated to UNICEF, but the amount to be donated is “at Damien’s discretion.” Hopefully the artist is feeling generous this holiday season so someone other than the super-rich can benefit from the purchase of one of these bags! As you continue to ponder just how one backpack could be so expensive, check out the video below that was created to promote the limited edition bags.