Paper Bagging

The smartest or silliest $300 you will ever spend.


Jil Sander Paper Bag, $290.

While abroad last week I noticed my friend’s paper bag. We were leaving a very fancy restaurant in the 5th Avenue equivalent of Paris and so I commended her for taking the left-overs of her expensive dinner to go in a paper bag, it was behavior looked down upon in the European Union. She just laughed though.

“It’s Jil Sander,” she explained.

I laughed back. I hadn’t realized she was so funny. Were we having a moment? Ah, the kinships Paris ignites.

But no, we weren’t. It actually was Jil Sander. And that is in fact, a paper bag.

I asked her if I could hold it–she gave it to me. I looked into it, clutched it, threw all preconceived notions about label blindness out the window for but a moment while I tried to reason with the deli packaging cum luxury handbag. It’s coated paper, so it won’t rip. That’s nice. It comes equipped with stitching that doesn’t exist on real paper bags and there are ventilation holes: at last, your lipstick can breathe. But for $300?

After I got back to my hotel room, I ran to my computer to research the bag–I felt defeated. So many websites had already acknowledged and subsequently annihilated it. I was clearly far behind and though I recognized and agreed with most of the criticism, I couldn’t help defend the bag.

A few years ago, I read a quote by Karl Lagerfeld that said something along the lines of, “the future of fashion is to spend a lot of money without looking like you spent it.” It sounded ridiculous at the time, wasn’t the point to do the exact opposite?

I learned quite quickly that Karl Lagerfeld is never wrong. Shortly thereafter, the ubiquitous Balmain ripped t-shirts that retailed for a whopping $900 began to surface. Today it seems, traditional luxury really is taking a backseat. See: the later $750 t-shirts (see: Givenchy,) the $500 sneakers (see: Golden Goose), the $2000 jeans (see: Christopher Kane,) the million dollar birkenstocks (estimation, but they are Celine and mink,) and now, the $300 paper purses.

It would be easier and far more cost effective to just grab an actual paper bag from your local deli, coat it should you feel compelled and stamp whatever you want across it. Jil Sander, Chanel, even “This is my paper bag, mother fucker,” but maybe there’s some artistry to the bag that we’re missing.

It’s undeniably endearing to take something as prosaic as grocery packaging and turn it into a season-it. Whether you’d like admit it or not, your perception of paper-bagging has changed and that is because of Jil Sander. It’s the same way rottweilers are now hip mammals because of Givenchy, Star Wars are no longer enticing for sci-fi buffs only, (see: Balenciaga and Comme des Garcons,) and tennis sneakers make perfect sense now off the court and on the runway.

What’s more? Most of it sells out interminably. The Sander paper-bags seem to be sold out globally. I can’t remember the last time I saw a graphic Givenchy tee for sale longer than ten minutes and I’ll leave the Isabel Marant sneaker to your conclusion.

There is a certain humor these items bring to their brands and maybe that’s what inexplicably (subjective) expensive fashion does. While we don’t have to invest in it if we don’t want to, we can still reap the benefits of watching the labels become a bit more human, appreciating the shift from afar. Yes, sometimes that enough.

But what do you think about the wave of inexpensive looking expensive fashion? And on an unrelated, more selfish note: do you like the new banner?

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  • Love this piece and I think the bags are beyond cool. Tricky to pull off perhaps, but just very cool.


  • marvoi

    preach! love the new banner =]

  • I prefer the leather ones… the paper bags are a bit too literal for me.

  • Janice

    Never seen a paper bag for $290! Things are getting a little cray!

  • Yvonne

    to the banner: you could have done it better, the previous one showed more artistry, this one just looks like a quickly-made collage. btw the “man repeller” seems to be a little bit of low resolution, too.

    and to the jil sander paper bag: looks SO ridiculous. but your thoughts about it and about the trends were very good, well-observed really.

  • ChloChlo

    it’s “lifestyle”

  • Celia

    Well, I think that it is what we call in spanish: círculo vicioso. Yesterday, 4th october, I was having my lunch in the street and this lunch came out of a paper bag. A million people lived this moment yesterday. Maybe today, a big quantity of this people is running to Jil Sander’s shop to buy this paper box for 300$. I just do not understand. As you said once Leandra, we are completely blinded by the label. Unfortunality.

  • Chrissy

    I think its absolutely ludacris! how long can you really use that bag for, a week? its going to rip very quickly, unless its made out of something special. Maybe people buying it never brought a paper bag lunch to school, so they are unaware of the short life of a paper bag.
    Love the new banner, noticed it immediately. (and i like that you used the word prosaic.)

  • I love inexpensive, “I look hot mod cool sexy” kinda thought you were expensive. That is the look I am all paper baggy about!

  • I had never thought about this point of view before. I always thought over-priced accessories were just that: over-priced. But you do make a good point. Now I don’t feel as bad about spending over half of my paycheck on a pair of sneaker wedges yesterday…

  • Lisbeth

    It just doesn’t seem very functional. The point of not looking like you’ve spent a lot of money, has to do more with being effortless chic than something like this.

  • The Karl Lagerfield quote totally sums up the future of fashion…luxury now means turning the mundane into something spectacular. Love the new banner by the way 🙂

  • zeva

    this was amazing!

  • I think one of the keys with products like these are that they’re at such an entry level price point for these brands, that a fashion lover who would never be able to justify $3000 for a Jil Sander coat, for example, can still buy a piece of the brand.

    • Leandra Medine

      Of course. But doesn’t that also procure a new layer of label blindness? Investing in whatever you can afford for the sake of initiation?

      • Oh, ABSOLUTELY.

      • lisbeth

        I absolutely hate that. Label whores is what I like to call them. I would never buy something I wouldn’t be drawn to without the label. That being said, if my favorite designer makes something I hate, I’m not going to buy it simply because it’s got a name on it and I can afford it. However, I don’t think this piece will attract those people. It’s more of a novelty piece that will attract wealthy shoppers that can afford to spare a few bucks for an eccentric, artful piece.

  • Hannah

    Being only in high school, all the money I have is from what I make babysitting, so spending $300 on a bag that I basically bring my lunch in to school with everyday seems a little bit ridiculous. However, that being said, I do understand the appeal. It’s cool, and different, and you can assume that a person willing to carry around a $300 lunch bag must have a good sense of humor. So, though my English teacher would be dissapointed that I don’t have a “strong stance”, I guess my opinion on this topic isn’t quite formulated yet. Now, excuse the awkward transition…your new banner is awesome!!!


  • Joza

    Whether we like it or not, ‘business’ is a big part of fashion.. It kinda drives fashion, and that’s how fashion ppl make a lot of money… I mean, what’s the margin on selling a Jil Saunders paper bag??! It’s HUUUGE! Branding at work!

    • lisbeth

      But I can totally see this being on the Outnet in 6 months for half the price.

  • Aurora
  • amazing new banner!!! i spot my season favorites peter pilotto and dries van noten <3

  • McCarron

    New banner looks great!

  • Probably the most ridiculous thing ever.


    Even though I’ve been playing with the thought some years it still shocks me that the designers actually pulled it through.. It’s humiliating for the designer’s name and the consumers – That they actually think that we want to buy!? But hey, we did..

  • alimck

    Great article repeller of men, personally I’d much prefer to buy a paper bag that said ‘This is my paper bag, mother fucker’ though…regards from the South of France, Alice

  • Natasha Lawrence

    You’re a great writer. And I love the new banner…

  • I feel like this kind of what the FEED movement did; however, those feed sacks actually made a difference in the world. These $300 paper bags are ridiculous! Maybe it’s the irony of “brown bagging it” when you’re wealthy or…I don’t know. A hipster thing? Just not into it. It’s kind of crass.

  • I wouldn’t buy a $300 paper bag – just because it has a name on it… but I would buy a leather bag that looked like paper: At least it would last longer.

  • Andrea

    OMG i would never pay 300 for this?!

  • I want my lips breathe.. not my lipstick package.

    Thanks for the post!! I am so enjoying your writings when it’s too gloomy and rainy outside.

    Akvile from

  • SarahStrong

    eh, I wouldn’t buy it for $300, but i do kind of fucking love it. It’s brilliant. Most people just can’t appreciate this kind of art.

  • new reader, did not get to see the previous banner but this ones nice. you made allot of good points but as far as the company’s being more human, i don’t see that way. more human would be reaching out to their community (which they may already do) or giving out some free paper bags to those out in the community but all in all it just seems like another way to make money out of something so simple and way expensive but the value is always in the eye of the beholder.

  • Colleen Oczkowski

    What an absolutely exquisite piece of crap!

  • Lara

    Three hundred dollar paper bags with labels are for suckers.

  • I have actually done this before with a paper bag and I went ahead and put Chanel on it. It was pretty zing. Id like to pretend like I started this trend.. ha that was a joke.

  • lavieenliz

    I love the banner! and can’t believe the bag is $300! If I had the money I would get it…

  • only if held at gun point would I buy that -C p.s: banner is really nice 🙂

  • Sketch42

    Well, art is what you can get away with, and thats even more true for fashion.

    Listen, there is a whole movement of disposable things made in non-disposable material. water bottle shaped decanters, ceramic Styrofoam cups… so I can see it. But this one is just lazy. The actual picnic clutch by Marie Turnor from a few years ago, made of tan leather, was way wittier and more chic.

    This is lazy, and… late.

  • Rachael

    I would only by the bag if it said exactly “This is my paper bag, mother fucker.” To quote Joan Rivers, “Fasshole!”
    Love it when fashion makes me feel sexy and laugh at the same time. Keep it coming.

  • Eva

    It’s pretty funny but $ 290, damn! I’ve seen it in leather too!

  • if the labels want to “become a bit more human” they just can lowers the prices and if you want to look like you haven’t spent a lot of money just don’t …and bonus point you will be guilty free!!! anyway i will be ashame to go out holding this paper bag even if it writes “god” on it ….

  • if the labels want to “become a bit more human” they just can lowers the prices and if you want to look like you haven’t spent a lot of money just don’t …and bonus point you will be guilty free!!! anyway i will be ashame to go out holding this paper bag even if it writes “god” on it ….

  • Anina

    I assume it’s meant to be made as a fashion bag and not art, so it’s made to sell. I guess it meant to push the boundaries of what we consider high fashion, why else would you sell a (coated) paper bag with a designer name printed on it? But then I just don’t understand the price tag It makes it seem more like a critical response to the label-effect you have mentioned in a earlier post. But it would make it some sort of conceptual art project, rather than fashion; “let’s see how many fashion-followers, who will spend $300 on a paper bag, just because it carries a hyped brand name”. I can’t see how a $300 paper bag can be justified in the terms of fashion. It’s absolutely and totally ridiculous, and that’s the only point I can see, that it could want to prove (which is an interesting point, but not very fashion).

  • shell

    Stampd’ LA has some sweet leather “paper bags” $90 for the small. I like it a lot better than an overpriced actual paper one. I know this is missing the point but hey they are pretty cool 🙂

  • nikki

    Shit no!!

  • Very interesting Post!
    Apart from the Jil Sander paper bag ( for me the idea is brilliant and ironic, but honestly I’ll never spend $290 to buy it; after all is PAPER! ) , your comments about what fashion symbolize and how it’s changing are sooo right.
    What Karl said was a prediction: people spend lots of money to seems slovenly.

    It’s nonsense!

    I think that fashion is often considered frivolous, useless and sometimes even stupid because this is the most widespread approach that people have to it.

    Maybe being in fashion should mean being opened to new ideas, new ways of showing itself, new ways of considering body, appreciating different points of view and enjoying the artistic inspiration behind it,…

    but more than anything else, SHARING IT with others,

    not just BUYING IT like others did.

  • Ilene

    I am late on this as well, but I think this just goes to show that fashion, like art, is all about doing something that hasn’t been done before. Not trying to be overly highbrow, but this reeks of dadaism. Seems to be just like what Duchamp did in 1917 when he turned a urinal on its side and called it art. Whether or not that makes it chic and amazing, I don’t know. But it’s definitely thought-provoking.

    • Couldn’t agree more. If we choose to see fashion designers as artists (and not everyone does), then this bag is a dadaist, though-provoking (to use your words) piece. Thing with fashion designers is that they can make some bucks off of it too. Regardless of if its seen as wonderful or seen as silly and later copied by Forever21, they still come out on top in that they put their ideas in the world AND made a living doing it.
      Would I buy this bag for $300 though? No.
      Do I like thinking about this shit and then buying more inexpensive stuff? Absolutely.

  • NatSeesStyle

    IMO, the Jil Sander paper bag handbag & other inexpensive looking expensive fashion pieces are just kind of goofy and useless. But you can argue that it makes a statement and allows for self expression, so it serves some purpose somewhere in the world of fashion.


  • Bonnie Clyde

    I like the idea but i think it a bit to much money!!

  • ecat

    love the banner so much!

  • “This is my paper bag, mother fucker,”

    I’m in tears over here haha. I couldn’t even justify this bag, not even with my usual “I want a piece of fashion history” nonsense, which explains an impluse buy on 700 Lanvin oxfords that still haven’t seen the light of day, or my sweaty foot.

    I can love fashion for it’s creatity, I can love it for the innovations that come from a designs ideas, but I can’t go and pay 900 bucks for a cotton tee because someone well known made it, I can’t justify a paperbag either, what i can justify is using that paperbag as inspiration and making one on my own, just to have using different fabric of course.

    I like the new banner, infact I love them all, my favorite is the one with that lady and furry pants that you had a LONNNNNNG time ago lol.

  • Rachelle

    love the new banner, 3 years ago I would have said that this is ridiculous. Now that I started my jewelry line and selling it on Etsy, I realized only the designer or artist can decide how to price their items and it’s all up to the consumer to purchase it or not. Some people have told me that my $30 dollars earrings were too expensive while some have told me it was too cheap. Whatever you do, some will just never think it’s good enough. So really it’s all up to you.
    With that being said I would never buy a brown paper bag for $300 just because I don’t care for it, but I do buy nail polishes for $30+ some people tell me I’m crazy lol. I don’t care..I love Chanel nail polish.

  • Alexandra

    I don’t have strong feelings about the paper bag- though I will not be procuring one myself. But the banner, I love!! I can’t wait to get some of that Dries magic!!

  • moiminnie

    I liked the previous banner better!
    As for the paper bag, for which you obviously pay in house rents, it’s just another thing for rich people to spend their money on. Now, designers are just playing the “let’s-see-what-idiot-bites” game. Plus, it’s not even their idea you should pay for or the symbolism behind it – it’s stolen. Remember this? Yeah.

    • “let’s-see-what-idiot-bites” -was my immediate thought after reading this post. They seam to try us how far we will go along with them.
      Maybe it’s not the case but reminds me of that homeless person from China who was looked up as a style icon for a long time.

    • SarahStrong

      that chanel bag is AWESOME!!!! i’m making one!!!

      • NETTA


  • the (un?)social butterfly

    I think inexpensive looking expensive is quite amazing, because the fast fashion industry can later reconstruct the inexpensive expensive inexpensively and then I will have access to a similar product that has not been sacrificed in quality — how much will H&M charge for a paper clutch, and how fucking cheaper can it cost to H&M then it cost to Jil Sander to produce it? I don´t think much. And you know, even though it´s sort of cheating to charge 290 bucks for a paper bag, I have to admit the concept is cool and I am glad someone had that idea, you know what I mean? So I´ll wait for the cheaper version or just grab a regular paper bag and wear it fashionably.
    Banner is good.

  • Gloria Quiroga

    Love the banner Repellah!
    As for the bag…..ridicoulous and not even pretty.

  • Bre

    I love this post! It’s deep and philosophical and humorous and is everything i love about your writing style. And the new banner is FABULOUS! Have a great weekend, MR!

  • Louis Vuitton made a garbage bag purse a couple years back, so this isn’t really new.

  • Jennifer

    I think that any established designer nowadays can really make anything and price it as high as they want and it will sell. We buy labels and what we think we need to have. Even something as stupid as a “paper bag”.

    xo Jennifer

  • I like the old banner better but this one is good too.
    and about the expensive fashion …trash is hip, but only if it looks expensive. that bag doesnt look like the one I get my sandwhiches in, it looks thicker and more detailed oriented. I appreciate that. it’s almost a satire to our consumerism.

  • NeenaJ

    Nice to see that Mugatu still gets work. Derelicte, people!

  • AlexsFashion

    O.O when you read things like that you really sometimes wonder what has been done to society. It is a grocery bag, which is coated in something so it doesn’t rip, with a stamp of Jill Sander and because of that stamp people all over the world are ready to pay 290$ for it. What has marketing done to us?!

  • Susan L

    I think the paper bag is kinda awesome. I’d rather buy a normal paper bag and stamp “this is my bag mother fucker”. Haha! thats a good one 😉

  • Sasha

    Regarding the banner: I like the white behind the lettering so that you can read it easily, but, as another commenter pointed out, the text itself seems to be lacking in crispness.

  • Sharon

    $300 for a paper bag is just insane in my opinion..

    Will you please
    vote for me in the Esprit Style Battle?

    See my blog
    for the link.

  • Wow, $300 that is out of control. Maybe if it was leather and looked like a paper bag. But not just plain paper!

  • fashionisserious

    I’ve always said I’m stingy. Before I buy a dress, an accessory, a pair of shoes I think a thousand time about the combinations with my entire wardrobe. Three hundred what?

  • A $300 paper bag? That is just sad.

    If I had that kind of money, I would gladly get one from the deli, print: “This is my paper bag, mother fucker” on it, cover it in some Mod Podge and give the remaining $295 to Women for Women international.

  • $300? I wouldn’t pay $30. Jil Sanders can go fuck herself.

  • Lucy

    I can not believe this is happening. I don´t believe someone would “invest” money on a paper bag. I know you do whatever you want with your money, and so on… but I lose faith in humanity when I hear/read things like that… Cheers from Brazil! Lucy

  • Sounds like you don’t have the balls to say it’s wank as fuck. Whatever you do MR, don’t offend the designers.

  • What’s next, a $250 rubber band?

  • DeV

    This is the kinda item that should’ve been used as an invitation to the Jill Sander fashion show, or a free gift with a Jill sander perfume, but to sell for 300 buck i think is outrageous. I like fashion regardless if it’s designer or not as i am loathed to spend hundreds on a Givenchy t-shirt when… well, its just a t-shirt, and the fact that fashion and trends change so much these items hardly seem an investment.

    Now, back to the coated paper bag. Hail No! Its a coated paper bag! i can spend that money on an actual bag or item of clothing that wont end up so redundant or disposable in a few months (I cant see it lasting the winter) I look forward to seeing these abandoned on eBay or on trains, buses or where ever people decide to leave them.

  • Clemence

    OMG this is so ridiculous and crazy at the same time!!! I think that when you have a strong brand you can do anything, print your logo on it and sell it at any price! the worst is that people buy it…

  • Cristián Pavez Díaz

    It’s just sad to spend $300 on this. I’d put that in my head. Charlie Brown style. Shame on whoever bought it.
    Greetings from Santiago, Chile.
    Twitter: @cristianpavezd

  • info

    Hey, Man Repeller, this is the original:
    Anyone who doesn’t know that the Marie Turnor “Picnic” came first, has not been keeping up! It has been around since 2010 in lots of forward thinking boutiques. Jil Sander and now Celine have just copied a great idea. Check it out along with the “Lunch”, the “Dinner”, and the “Snak”.

    • Leandra Medine

      Chanel did an interp too — hard to say that knocking off an imitation of a paper bag is really knocking off though, but you have a good point. Sort of lazy

  • Sam

    Now that is a paper bag you wouldn’t throw out! <3

  • rhodawong

    I think fashion has come to a point where people would do whatever to just wear a brand. if the fashion designer says it’s fashionable, everyone goes for it. i don’t know what i think about this paper bag though

  • Bee

    Is it not true that a lot of people splurge on luxury brands just bcos of the brand n the fact that its expensive-looking? It is puzzling to me that it is the opposite. And I can never see myself spending that money for a paper bag.

  • Z B

    yes it is cool, but not $300 cool!
    a diy version would be more fun!

  • yvonne

    hehe i love it when fashion is slightly insane

  • Jill

    I’d laugh at anyone walking with a bag like that. I’d seriously think how stupid one can be to pay $300 for such ugly brown bag. That’s not fashion. That’s killing the fashion.

  • Gizel

    Would people still buy it if it wasn’t Jil Sander? I can’t help but think someone is having a laugh on the expense of US$ 800 t-shirt/US$ 300 paper bags buyers.

  • And sooo practical for bad hair-days, just put it over your head and your good to go!

  • Gab

    I don’t understand why some people say this is art? It has no context! It would be art if the bag was sold for $2.50 and rich people would still buy it… or if this was given to poor people in allienated communities and they were seen wearing a “high-end designer paper bag”. But if you see rich people, paying a high price for a designer bag… it’s the SAME OLD shit. This can’t be called art… this only demonstrates that rich people will pay shit loads for loads of shit.

  • nausinae

    What is fashion about? If it’s about art, then that paper bag deserve what it costs. If it’s about satisfying primary needs, then it’s nonsense. You can find another example in food.

  • Thank you for making me frequently pee myself a bit (from laughter, that is). Even my husband will laugh at your man repeller transitional outfits (though, thankfully I am unaware of whether or not he has the same unfortunate condition when laughing). On a Sidenote… We are Americans living in London. Do you think Jil Sander would be upset if I DID use her bag to take home my leftovers?

  • Franny

    I think Jil Sander is taking the piss a little bit. She’s laughing.

    • Mia

      No, she thinks her buyers are idiots, that’s much worse.

  • Sarah Hamid

    i always believed jil sander is a respectable label… really hoping they’re just taking a piss with this paperbag. inexpensive looking expensive ”fashion” is a sad idea.

  • Denisa

    Hmm.. I dont think it was a good idea.. Uselessness..

  • It is so iconic, so controversial, and completely on point. In 25-40 years the “moment” of the Jil Sander paper bag will be revered and hated enough to auction one of those babies off.

  • disqus_eKy9oRZtLV

    i would buy it if it were $10 at moma store..

  • Misses Robinson

    What Claspy said. That is bullshit. I’m ready to finance Chinese replica companies just out of spite for the ridiculousness of handbag prices. And they give them away to the wealthiest people to prey on suckers like us 99%ers (o.k. 2% but still) so we will want them. I a going to stick with Robin Richman’s designers and not see my bag on every woman on Michigan Avenue or at East Bank.

  • SArah

    LOVE the new banner

  • I honestly can’t decide. Is that genius or totally insane? I mean it’s paper. Stamp your own name on a bag and ask people to pay $700 for it!

  • StyleNonsense

    I Think It Goes To Show The Huge Effect Of Fashion & Also Brand Loyalty. I Read About It In Grazia, I Think The Cost Is Quite Unheard Of For A Paper Bag Considering If You Walked Into A High Street Store In The UK With That Same Amount Of Money, You Could Get Yourself A Whole Outfit, Maybe 2! Personally, I Don’t Really See The Problem If Other People Have The Money To Buy It, They Should Be Able To. It Is A Bag After All & Bags From Other Big Brands Retail For Triple That Cost, Put Personally, I Won’t Be Investing! HAAAA!

  • I can’t wait to buy one. Not! I did a DIY insulation job on a brown paper bag and at least now I can either keep my lunch or lipstick cool. Mine is definitely better.

  • i love the new banner.

  • Camille

    paper bragging

  • Sharon

    wow that’s quite an expensive paper bag. Just made my day!
    Love this post though… very well written!

  • a classic case of “2 much monies, nowhere to spend it”

  • Anna Turabelidze

    no it is not a piece of investment and it is not worth $300.
    great banner

  • This can’t be justified!

  • Hilary Shanks

    ” This is my paper bag motherfucker” lol

  • Christine Kim

    I would never pay that much for an indestructible designer paper bag… although the concept is intriguing.

  • Emma JOy

    That is absolutely disgusting.

  • kammer

    As ridiculous as it is, I think it’s kind of unique that an “everyday” object has been transformed into something more. No one has ever taken a second look at a brown paper bag until now – maybe that’s what Jil Sander is challenging.

    It could be tissue boxes as shoes next season. Time to get crafty.

  • The new banner is a fresh change, and a change is as good as holiday… so, thank you for providing my eyes with a welcome little holiday 🙂

    I LOVE that Jil put a $300 price tag on a stitched paper-bag, and love even more that people have bought it.

    It’s hilarious. Why? Because this apparently ridiculous act of “art”/”fashion” is no different from any of us spending crazy money at the hair-stylist for a hairstyle you could cut yourself at home; or blowing your hard-earned income on one weeks worth of caviar and champagne, which is only going to be expelled in less than a day; or buying a a so-called designer white T, which is made in China for $2, but which we pay a whole lot more simply because it has been “finished” in France (read: had its label stitched on in France) and we bought it at a boutique rather than in the supermarket; or buying an exotically embroidered, beaded jacket that costs us $1800 at sale time, but whose fabric comes from the extremely cheap-but-lovely, mass factories in India; or staring with intelligent frowns on our faces – and seriously considering investing in a famous artist’s work of a $23,000, 9 foot by 15 foot canvas painted entirely in black – just black, nothing else – intriguingly entitled “Black Number One”.

    As a previous poster commented, Jil really has had the last laugh on us. We do this kind of foolish consumer/wise investor spending all the time… we just don’t think about how foolish/wise we are, until it’s something as mundane as a paper-bag.

    And honestly, such a paper-bag could be considered serious art to some of us. If the role of art is to bring thought and reaction into our lives, then the fact we react so strongly to the fact that the carrier of this bag should have simply bought something more enduring from Jil and simply used the bag that the item came in to cary her things, rather than spend $200 on actually buying an empty bag, means that the item has done its duty of making us think.

    It’s interesting that it sold out so fast… I wonder if maybe there were profits to charity for purchasing the bag, because that would help it make more sense to us. The greatest test as to whether an item is a sensible purchase or not, is whether we would put such an item on layaway, chipping away at our income to set something aside each week to own it.

    While some perceive it as wonderfully glamourous and carefree to throw $300 – in one shot – on a paper-bag, to most of us, such an act screams, “I’m so-o-o-o rich!” – in finance, but not necessarily commonsense. There is something infinitely ridiculous about saying to oneself – and even more so to someone else, “Oh, I have a paper-bag on 6 week layaway”.

    But the biggest question for me is, did the girl receive a carry-bag for her carry-bag?

  • anthropologist

    This is the kind of fashion that will save the world from enviromental problems. If people use 300$ to buy a paper bag, then the same money can’t buy 600 regular paperbags. Very eco-friendly 🙂

  • Felicity

    It’s the most fucking ridiculous thing ever. It’s like her plastic carrier bag that was £90. Everyone is being very silly about what are essentially grocery bags! (The new banner is very nice) x

  • i think, or hope really, that jl sander is attempting to push the boundaries of what we’ll consider fashion a la what marcel duchamp and his urinal did for art. that said, it’s a fucking paper bag. i don’t really need to spend $300 to look like i shop at chipotle.


  • SarahStrong

    Am I living in bizarro world? this bag is BRILLIANT. BRILLIANT, I TELL YOU!!! It’s a piece of art. It’s a fucking statement. I posted this bag on my FB page, thinking that it would be hatemongered as it has been here, but all of my design friends unequivocally loved it. Not just fashion designers, but artists and product designers alike. This is not a bag for the typical consumer, no, but IS a fantastic design, a work of art, and those of you who can’t see the brilliance in this idea need to open your eyes to new perspectives…. Fashion isn’t always about SELL, SELL, SELL, but it’s also about THINK, THINK, THINK. I wouldn’t buy it, because, hey, i’ve got kids to feed (literally). But I do think there is a strong message in this statement, and I, for one, absolutely love it. It’s like using fashion to make a statement about fashion. Ya dig???

    • deanna

      Okay, but what is the statement it’s making?

    • thunder


  • SVieth

    If its couture, I’ll buy it. I won’t used it though! hahaa
    talking about bags, if anyone is interested in investing in a one-time worn LOUIS VUITTON purse, click here

  • Bex

    This controversy has raged for 100 years- ever since Marcel Duchamp and his ‘readymades’. The value of an art (or fashion) object is whatever we agree upon.
    I don’t see why the outrageous cost of this bag should be any more controversial that the high cost of any other designer object.

  • Ummmm, in a word- NO.

  • DidoAnna

    Paper b(r)agging

  • Catherine and Greer

    The banner is your best yet! I was starting to get worried man repelling was just another term for grunge, but when you put that silky-white-pleated vagina looking thing in the middle of more casual stuff on your banner I think it visually represents your style really well.

  • jen

    if people are stupid enough to buy this and consider it an investment, more power to jil sander for being smart enough to use the power of her branding to “create” this kind of product. it’s interesting how the lemmings will scramble after hideous and cheap objects just bc a company they consider cool puts their stamp on it. but..i believe in capitalism. if there’s a market for it, then so be it.

  • Marta Black

    I completely understand the brand point of view, with so many top brands on the market, they need to do controversial material to be talked! talk good , talk bad, just talk baby!

  • Marta Black
  • I do like the new banner – good Man Repelling choices. That pricey paper bag is shocking. I only wish I had enough money to blow on something that ridiculous.

  • onikai

    It’s so cool that it’s fucking lame.

  • CJ

    I think the Jil Sander paper bags are bull to the shit. I can get a lunch bag and with a Sharpie write “Jil Sander” on the bottom. Done and done.


  • claire

    shit is bananas.

  • Jeanne

    I recently purchased a blouse from American Apparel for $22, and it’s my favorite mocking-for-fun blouse. It has bottles of perfume on it, but instead of the real names of the perfumes, it spells “RALF” in the shape of the “Ralph” fragrance. “CHANNEL” for “CHANEL”, “DRNY” for “DKNY”… and so on. It’s an incredibly funny shirt, and the greatest $22 I’ve spent in a long time.

  • Harbir

    I would buy this bag, love it! and the idea behind it. Simple is chic. This is fashionable to a high level not yet comprehended by all, but enjoyed by many.
    Also the new banner is well suited to your blog, perfect!

  • Lindsey R.

    The only humor would be on the side of Sander, whose designers are probably holding their sides with laughter because people are paying $300 for a paper bag.

    Not only that, it’s lazy. Instead of plumbing the depths of their creativity for something truly inventive and potentially iconic, they reach into one of their kitchen drawers and pull out the ubiquitous paper bag, then do virtually nothing to make it unique or thought-provoking (or worth the price point).

  • julia

    The Emperor’s New Clothes – he did even pay for nothing… then I´d rather take a paper bag, in case toilet papers going out over the weekend.

  • zoow


  • I laughed out loud at work- people were looking at me!

  • bguigui
    This version from fab is pretty…..fab. And affordable. :/

  • vittoria gallacci

    That paper bag for almost 300$ is the same thing as the Cèline white tee (just “Cèline Paris) for 250 euros… Is nonsense!!

  • Lucinda T
  • Tasha D.

    Brace yourselves for the $10,000 toothpick. And it’s disposable.


    I do!

  • Graphic Save

    Nice Bagging .. I have found some Logo design on USA Logo that was awesome … really free..

  • So interesting how fashion can develop and transform over the years… minimalist is the new extravagant!

  • Chelsea

    didn’t you diy the same thing during Fashion Week once? I’m surprised you didn’t mention it.