Every now and then, we discuss non-leather bags and what a ripoff I think they tend to be. You know the drill: A brand makes a basic bag in a basic fabric and then charges an arm and a leg for it based on the strength of their other designs. The theory is that because their other bags are fancy, they can get away with convincing everyone that some cotton or linen bag is also, indeed, fancy. Don’t be fooled – those cotton and linen bags are usually not anything to write home about, and they’re not a good investment for your handbag dollar.
I’ve always felt secure in this theory, but then a bag like the Celine Phantom Luggage Tote in both beige and olive (pictured after the jump) canvas comes along and makes me reevaluate my own hangups about the material and bags made out of it. We’re big Celine lovers around here, so naturally, this bag gave me a bit of pause. Let’s talk price after the jump.
As far as cotton-canvas totes go, this one is kind of resplendent, right? Most brands that try to work the non-leather voodoo on their customers do it with bags that are boring or incredibly simple; remaking your best seller and all its signature details in the material is a design distinction worth noting. Also worth noting is the price: $1550, which is, in fact, quite a bit of money for any canvas tote bag, even if it’s trimmed in leather and even if it was stitched together by the surely magical elves at Celine.
Still, I can’t help but be intrigued. Celine prices are notoriously tough to pin down, but my research indicates that a leather version of this bag would be at least $2600, if not more. Considering that, the $1550 price tag represents an enormous price difference, even if it’s still objectively high. At the very least, Celine has enough respect for its customers to know that they won’t take an inferior product for a $200 discount.
I could see buying this bag if I were lavishly wealthy and could have the bag wardrobe of my dreams; it’d be fun to parade it around the country club for a season or two, but if you’re looking for longevity (not to mention a bag that will resist smudges and colors transfers better), I’d still suggest a regular or Phantom Luggage in a medium or dark neutral. Save up the money, it’ll be worth it in the long run. What say you?
Shop Celine via Kirna Zabete.