My personal feelings about fur notwithstanding, when I first saw the Roberto Cavalli Squirrel-Trimmed Brocade Shoulder Bag, it actually seemed like a rather judicious and attractive use of the material. And then I read the word “squirrel,” and it screwed up my entire perception of this bag’s reality.

Is it just me, or is there something positively Deliverence-esque about wearing squirrel fur? Are European squirrels more chic than their American counterparts, or are the animals just not regarded the same way in other countries? And if they are regarded the same way, why use a material that has such low-market connotations on a bag with a four-figure price tag?

The handbag itself is actually quite beautiful, when you don’t consider the fur or its source. The brocade embroidering is layered on top of what appears to be burnout velvet, and the details of the top flap and woven handle are intricate and extremely rich-looking. Cavalli managed to imbue his lush aesthetic into this bag without getting too far into tacky territory, and it would have been a textured, season-appropriate addition to many high-end winter wardrobes. And then, someone made the executive decision to cover it in squirrel, which apparently doesn’t confuse some people as much as it does me – the bag sold out soon after its Net-a-Porter debut. Buy through Net-a-Porter for $3650.

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