Balenciaga is no stranger to controversial releases, what with its signature penchant for often bizarre and forward-thinking aesthetic. That said, it certainly comes as no surprise that their latest drop has once again generated a lot of buzz. What is it this time, you ask? Introducing the “Trash Pouch,” a Kim Kardashian-approved handbag inspired by the humble black trash bag (yes, you read that right!).
What Is the Balenciaga Trash Pouch?
Rendered in glossy calfskin leather, the viral drawstring bag comes in four colorways: black, white, yellow, and blue. If not for the emblazoned Balenciaga logo (which is barely visible) and its hefty $1790 price tag (that's approximately P100,000, mind you), one might think that the wearer toting the bag is simply taking out the trash—and this uncanny observation was confirmed by the Spanish house's creative director Demna Gvasilia himself.
"I couldn't miss the opportunity to design the most expensive trash bag in the world, because who doesn't love a fashion scandal?" the mastermind behind the bag was quoted saying in an interview with WWD, explaining his inspiration for his Fall/Winter 2022-2023 fashion show.
Trash Pouch in Black, $1790 (approximately P100,138), BALENCIAGA, balenciaga.com
Internet Reactions to the Balenciaga Trash Pouch
Needless to say, the piece became a gold mine for hilarious memes online! “Okay but are you 'My trash bag is Balenciaga' rich?” quipped one user.
Another netizen even teased about bringing an actual trash bag to a party then claiming it's Balenciaga. Fun fact: An internet user did exactly this, carrying a trash bag with Balenciaga plastered all over it in the streets! Her “experiment” garnered mixed reactions, with others expectedly poking fun at her “designer tote.”
Naturally, some users are also calling out the brand, with one calling the bag in question a “morbid social experiment.”
The “trash pouch” is just one of Balenciaga’s most outrageous releases since Demna took the helm in 2015, shocking the fashion community with his out-of-the-box creations. Case in point: the distressed Paris sneakers, which drew flak for promoting “poorcore.” Of course, there's also Kim Kardashian’s unforgettable red carpet appearance in a caution tape catsuit.
The attention-grabbing strategy might be working, though—if their revenue is anything to go by. Just a week after the release of the viral bag, a report states that Balenciaga was mentioned in a record of 54,000 tweets, generating almost $2 million in media impact value according to fashion data analytics firm Launchmetrics. Since Demna’s appointment, the luxury brand also comfortably sits atop the Lyst index, with annual sales reportedly surpassing $154 million.
One thing for sure: Balenciaga knows how to make a statement.
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