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Hey, handbag designers! We need to talk. Huddle up, it’s time for a chit chat.

I know that relatively inexpensive canvas totes probably sell well for you guys. They’re extremely low-margin compared to leather bags (which are already pretty low-margin compared to lots of consumer products), and having a strong brand name means you get to mark them up like crazy. I get it! I just don’t like it.

Take the Reed Krakoff Leather-Trimmed Canvas Tote, for example. When I first saw it, I got that little sparkly feeling in the back of my brain that happens as soon as I set eyes on something that I really like. Printed bags are under-appreciated, and this graphic python print in particular is quite nice. For a moment, I had hope that the bag was leather. Those hopes were quickly dashed.

To be clear, this isn’t something that’s limited to Reed Krakoff, and I generally think that Krakoff’s designs are well-priced compared to other options of a similar style and quality. Those things are generally positive, but in this case, they made the fact that this tote is canvas a bit of a bigger letdown. For such a simple shape in an inexpensive fabric, I can’t abide this kind of price tag from any brand. Jack up the price a little further and give me leather, Reed. Or anyone! But especially Reed. Priced at $540 via Net-a-Porter.

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Share Your Thoughts With Us

  • AW

    I agree – it took me a double take and a quick read through before realizing this isn’t leather. And at a $500+ price point, that’s a bit steep for a plain canvas bag

  • Tiffany

    That bag is gorgeous! Looks like it can go with anything.

  • Nadia

    I agree, it’s outrageous

  • sx

    Actually when RM’s canvas mab first came out, it gave me a good laugh. I took it as a smart parody of her leather bags and the price tag seems more justifiable than this one

  • Graefka

    “They’re extremely low-margin compared to leather bags (which are already pretty low-margin compared to lots of consumer products), and having a strong brand name means you get to mark them up like crazy. ”

    Don’t you mean high-margin? If they are marked up “like crazy,” that makes them high-margin items. Plenty of profit.


  • Erik

    i think 250 is a good price for non leather totes like this, i mean it’s not groundbreaking or anything… it would be better if it were leather

  • Jennie

    Canvas is a no-no for me. I love the brush stroke effect though, very chic.

  • rose60610

    Cool print, bad pricing. For fabric bags I’d go Longchamps, but no higher. If I was bent on canvas I’d go Lands End or LL Bean. Designer canvas? Not for me. I’d rather put my dollars toward leather or skin.

  • carrie

    Way too much for this bag…yes it’s fun, but not that fun!

  • jen

    I couldn’t agree more!

  • Jess

    Right on the money with this article!

  • Karen

    definitely would like it better if it was leather!

  • Ttammy

    I agree- $500 is too much for this tote..

  • Shereen

    I always hate how Gucci, LV, Reed, etc. jack up prices for coated canvas bags. I always love the bags on first glance, but end up shaking my head once I see the price. Such a rip-off.

  • Leslie

    The issue for me is not that it is canvas, a pretty and lightweight bag has it uses, but the price is ridiculous. That said, I like the colour though.

  • Laura

    I wouldn’t pay that much for a canvas bag. The print is gorgeous, though.

  • mia

    I think the textil is very cute and i think that it looks good on the fabric – but i completely agree that it’s not worth $500+. It should be $300 at most.

  • jenny

    i would totally want it if it were leather (or even vegan leather)!

  • FashionIsMyHobby

    $500 is way too much for canvas!
    Interesting print, but would like longer shoulder straps.

  • mochababe73

    Too bad that this treatment wasn’t done on leather.
    I think that maybe Reed was attempting to lure customers that can’t afford his leather bags. Unfortunately, for him, a consumber can buy real leather bags from any number of designers for that price.
    With that being said, I love the treatment, but I would never pay that much for a canvas bag.

  • Dana

    $500 for canvas? No thanks… =/

  • Erica

    i love the color!! and i agree with the others, it’s canvas, reed. his bags are ridiculously expensive..

  • Chris

    I agree with the majority here. The bag is fabulous, but far too expensive!

  • MoniqueHasana

    Now, this is a fresh and new style

  • kirsten

    Beautiful color, but wouldn’t but such a pricey canvas bag.

  • sara

    awesome bag!

  • raquelb

    That is definitely too steep a price for a canvas tote. I would rather put that money towards a leather bag.

  • Mari

    I think I understand!

  • J Umm

    can’t believe it ISNT in leather, they’ve done well with the print!

  • katia

    Wow that price and canvas tote! Ok, its really beautifull and makes me want it!
    But it needs leather!!!

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  • Sil

    those are my exact thoughts everytime i see an overpriced canvas bag
    i wouldn’t pay that much money for a bag made of just fabric!
    and i agree with you that it would be a lot better made of leather

  • Alexandra Davidoff

    Amanda, your absolutely correct in saying that printed bags are under-appreciated. This Reed Krakoff tote is gorgeous, and probably super light to carry for a normally exhausting entire day. I love printed bags, and own well over a dozen – in particular Tokidoki – I wouldn’t trade any of them for leather!

  • Kathryn

    the purple and python mix isn’t for me, but I can see why so many people like it

  • jen

    Reed Krakoff is the biggest rip off lady’s.. the leather is the same as they use for Coach. Made in china. The Krakoff label is Coach’s attempt to get that “luxury” customer, with a luxury price tag. But $1500 to $4000 for something made in china? your crazy Krakoff/Coach. Also the styles are just tweeks on Hermes and Chloe handbags, nothing original.