Our community PurseForum is teaming up with Rebecca Minkoff in a project the likes of which handbag lovers have never seen before. Starting tomorrow, Monday the 10th of October, PurseForum.com will launch a three-week collaboration that will not only have fans vote on design elements to create an exclusive Rebecca Minkoff bag, but also allow the fans to be an integral part of the design process.

I cannot begin to imagine the frustration Joy Gryson and her company must feel over seeing a very similar brand name pop up and cause brand confusion. Many have thought Olivia & Joy is a new offshoot by Joy Gryson, but it is not. Do not be confused, there is absolutely no affiliation, and we wanted to help clear up any confusion that buyers might have.

Image via Bundle

Denying it is impossible: Even with most of the economy at a standstill, luxury goods continue to boom and the products that make up the marketplace continue to reach higher and higher price points. All of the husbands and boyfriends (not to mention jealous officemates and frienemies) out there who nearly keel over at the price tags on handbags should take a look through the back pages of any major US fashion magazine – accessories are expensive, but clothes are out of this world.

Do you ever get the sense that luxury monolith LVMH might be trolling Hermes, purely for CEO Bernard Arnault’s amusement? With yesterday’s report from British Vogue that LVMH’s ownership percentage in the family-run French leather goods company has increased once again, the possibility seems not altogether unlikely.

The increase – from 20.2% to 21.4% – may seem tiny on its face and to those who haven’t followed the story.

Economic problems? Debt ceilings? Political tensions? What are those things? The luxury industry has surely never heard of them, if double-digit sales increases from LVMH, Hermes and Burberry, just to name a few, are any indication. The rich only get richer, naturally, and when they do, they buy clothes. Lots of clothes. And handbags. Louis Vuitton is even reporting waiting lists, a thing that most pundits seemed to think would never be seen again after the economic crash of 2008.

No matter your brand of choice or accessories budget, I think all bag lovers can agree: Prices are too freakin’ high. Even if you’re willing to grudgingly pay them in exchange for quality, it still stings a little bit every time, doesn’t it? Get ready for it to sting a little bit more in the near future – it’s costing brands more to source leather from Italian tanneries than ever, according to Women’s Wear Daily.

       
Photo credit: Jeffrey Westbrook for Harper’s Bazaar

I opened up my inbox this morning to find an oddly alluring email about Smurfette wearing designer accessories in new issue of Harper’s Bazaar. First off, I had no idea The Smurfs movie was coming out and second off, I find it hilarious to see Smurfette posing with high end designer goods.

When Style.com Fashion Director Candy Pratts Price speaks, fashion people listen, which means that anything she included in her Vogue.com list of Fall 2011′s 45 most desirable accessories just got an instant injection of cool on top of the considerable amount that it probably already had. For the article’s bags, Pratts Price picked everything from glossy patent daytime satchels to tiny evening clutches festooned with animal images, and surely you’ll covet at least one of her selections.

For those of us who carry designer accessories, it can be rare that what we’re toting inside our bags is worth more than the bags themselves. Sure, it would cost $600 to replace my cell phone, but my Balenciaga Day Bag in Fall 2007 Violet? Priceless, people. For one metro-Atlanta woman, though, even the ritziest of bags could be had for the value of what she found floating around inside of her purse: A winning lottery ticket.

Here is the outrageous “1001 Nights Diamond Purse” which is valued at $3.8 million. The heart-shaped bag is encrusted with over 4,500 diamonds.

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