Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Imitation is the Sincerest Form of Flattery

I'm really not one for designer ripoffs, unless it's a fairly basic style that no one designer can really call their own. I'll admit, I buy a few pieces from Forever 21, but they're usually pieces that I've scouted around for. I always make sure that they won't fall apart after a few washes, and I never buy the pieces that are really obvious fakes of designer pieces. However, being the bargain-oriented person that I am, I have no problem with taking a high fashion designer style and buying pieces that echo the style without being an outright copy.

While staring in wonder at Neiman Marcus' completely unreachable set of designer purses, I came upon this unbelievably expensive black crystal purse. And no, I don't mean my version of expensive. This purse is a whopping $2,295. I don't really see what's so great about it, besides that it's beaded with "jet Austrian crystals." I did, however, like the idea of a black twinkling clutch. I loved that it could add some glitz to an outfit without being completely over-the-top.

After checking out the outlet at Bag Borrow or Steal, I found this glittery evening clutch by Franchi, a well-known high end bag retailer. Thankfully, this one is only $45.00 (though it originally sold for $157.00).

Another evening bag I found at Neiman Marcus was this infamous Valentino bow clutch. This red silk contraption is a little too much for my tastes, though. It's also $1,095. Why on earth anyone would pay over $1,000 for a purse this strange is beyond me, but I guess to each his own (or her own, in this case).

What I did like about that clutch was the idea of a bow detail on an evening bag. A clutch, specifically (they can get a little too cutesy on purses sometimes). So, I found another great bag from the Bag Borrow or Steal outlet (I'd suggest you sign up for an account there ASAP, even if you're not planning on borrowing anything) from Furla. This silver bow clutch is perfect for dressing up any evening outfit, while adding a little bit of cute. Plus, it's only $85.00.

I'm sure you all have seen this Gucci crystal clutch...or at least, I'm hoping you all have seen this Gucci crystal clutch or else the picture probably won't do it for you. It's a fairly simple clutch, with a small buckle detail. It's also $495.00.

While looking over the Lime Tag sale at Piperlime, I found this bag which is almost a variation on the idea. Gucci's clutch was more of a hard-cased clutch with a smaller buckle detail. This bag, from Francesco Biasia, can be used as a clutch or as a small purse, and it features the same type of buckle detail with a slightly larger buckle. This one isn't as much of a discount bag as the other ones, but it's $149.99, which is still quite a bit cheaper than the Gucci version

Finally, while perusing the Bluefly sales I came upon this cute little Kooba bag with a ruched detail. I think that this bag is definitely very versatile, and the buckle detail adds a little bit of interest. It's on sale for $195.00, which isn't too bad, but this is sort of a small bag and I'm sort of on a small budget. So I set out to find an even cheaper alternative to this bag.

While looking at my beloved Piperlime, I found this grey bag with the same sort of ruched buckle detail. This time, however, it was a larger bag and it had additional buckle detailing on the side. And the best part? It's only $62.99. Though "Melie Bianco" may not have the same designer ring as "Kooba," sometimes you've got to make sacrifices so you don't break the bank.

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