Leo & Tricia Pillbox Clutch, $168 via Free People

It’s a great time of year for “Friends and Family” coupon codes and midseason sales on the stuff that was just a tad out of reach two months ago, particularly in the more sale-friendly contemporary market. While I was making an order at FreePeople.com today, I wandered over to the site’s handbag section to see if it contained any hidden treasures, and what I found confused me. A Bottega Veneta Knot Clutch? No, what you see above is a Leo & Tricia Pillbox Clutch, it merely looks a lot (a lot) like a the iconic Knot Clutches we all know and love.

I don’t really have any moral qualms about “inspired” bags because almost everything is “inspired” to one extent or another, but this bag was so close that I thought it would be worthy of discussion. And really, it’s not even the clutch itself that made me pause (box clutches are a dime a dozen, of course); it was the clasp. The “knot” closure is something BV has used for quite a long time, and I’ve never seen another brand appropriate it quite so closely.

Here’s the Bottega knot, for comparison’s sake:

Image via Bottega Veneta

The woven markings on the metal “rope,” the shape of the knot itself, the caps on the ends; it’s all just very…familiar. The closures on box clutches are a signature for premier designers and contemporary brands alike, and at a sub-$200 price point, Leo & Tricia is missing a good opportunity to distinguish itself on the market instead of just being another wannabe. For that much money, I should be able to buy something distinctive, not something that wishes it were Bottega Veneta. Buy through Free People for $168.

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Share Your Thoughts With Us

  • J Umm

    yeah, it is a rip off bottega but i mean, come on it allows us student and folks on a budget to get our hands on something luxe!

  • Edoardo

    This print is so amazing


  • mochababe73

    I like it, but yeah, it’s not even an inspired clutch. Definitely a replica.
    However, a clutch that would only be used ocasionally, I still wouldn’t spend that much.

  • Liz

    total knockoff

  • Ashleyg

    *deep sigh* I typically hate to comment on these types of discussions but it really is pretty much copying… I don’t want to pay that much for what ultimately looks like a BV knock-off. Couldn’t they have just put like a clover or something on there?? *shrug*

  • Purse Pixie blog

    It’s tough because there’s a fine line between being inspired by a design and copying a design. This one’s a little too close for me.

  • Kat

    How hard is it to design another type of closure, really? They could’ve twisted the knot differently or not use the woven rope effect or not have the exact same cap-like things on the end to at least distinguish it from the BV. And it was a pretty decent clutch to begin with.


    • Amanda

      I’m with you. It’s a very cute clutch. All they really needed to do was design a different closure. I mean, use a giant stud, or rhinestone, button… whatever.

  • Bir

    In one word this is STEALING!!!!!!!

  • 19yearslater

    I agree, for that much money it needs to be original in some way.

  • Susan

    Not cool.

  • rose60610

    I am neither a patent nor copyright attorney, and I’ve always wondered about the fine line between “inspired” vs. “copy”. But I question how many minutes it’d take if BV sued L & T before they settled out of court. If L & T could get away with this, then BV must not have their design legally protected. As far as I’m concerned, this is a counterfeit. The price is not a factor.

  • Mario

    I’m blown away at how blatant this is? I’m concerned that “high street” brands continue to hide under the guise of “inspiration”.

    You were neither inspired by BV, nor are you inspiring as a Designer, just a wannabe. Clearly you’re talent-less and you work for a company that think it’s OK to do this.

    Let’s take away your magazines and the internet, put you in a room with a blank sheet of paper and a pencil, and let’s see what you come up with?

    Shame on you.

  • Flirq

    The leopart print is kind of cute but you’re so right it’s missing a good opportunity to distinguish itself on the market.

  • double_king

    the knot is very special.