To describe MSCHF as an art collective oversimplifies the Brooklyn-based group’s oeuvre. MSCHF is a jab in the side of our late-capitalist culture, exploring the cheekily dystopian intersection of art, fashion, performance art, and gamified lifestyles in a way that Black Mirror could only aspire to.
Despite the sardonic wit that underlines its designs, everything about MSCHF is thoughtful. From its drop websites to the actual creations themselves, MSCHF’s puckish presentation enshrouds sincere artistic integrity. There’s a reason that these guys produce stuff that’s both museum-worthy and as hyped as any Supreme drop.
MSCHF’s first handbag, the “Made in Italy,” is indicative of its ethos. The hook is that the relatively affordable bag purports to be made in Italy, like luxury bags that command four-figure price tags.
MSCHF’s handbag, however, is made in a different Italy. Italy, Texas, that is.
Again, the handbag is clearly an exploration of that “Made in” descriptor that’s been bandied about as a barometer of quality for decades. Why should a product’s origin of production define its worthiness? Why is one region valued above another?
These kinds of labels are essentially useless nowadays in the stratified fashion industry and no longer guarantee any level of quality.
Consumers still don’t have complete transparency on supply chains and have no idea whether a product made in Italy was produced entirely in Italy or simply finished there. Where are the materials sourced from? Are the workers immigrants? MSCHF ponders it all.
So, not only is MSCHF’s Made in Italy handbag a parody of the label that so many luxury labels plaster across their products, but it’s also a genuinely useful accessory.
Made of quality leather and embossed with stylized branding, MSCHF’s Made in Italy handbag is of a similar vein to, say, Telfar’s signature accessory.
The bag is utilitarian — big enough for laptops and documents aplenty — and hardy, with multiple strap lengths for easy wear.
It’s also priced relatively accessibly, with brown and black bags launching November 15 on MSCHF’s handbag website for $550 apiece.
MSCHF’s made many moves into the space of tangible goods over the past few months, mainly with its instant sell-out sneaker program (co-signed by some surprising celebs, even).
The Made in Italy handbag is the next logical progression. It’s MSCHF having its cake and eating it too, as both a conversation-starter and a covetable collectible in its own right. How many other handbags can say the same?