Gasp! The Olsens Design a Purse the Rest of Us Can Actually Afford

01/31/2013 at 06:00 PM ET

Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen StyleMintDario Cantatore/FilmMagic

Our jaws hit the floor when Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen designed a $55,000 handbag a few months ago, so it’s safe to say we had a very different (though equally enthusiastic!) reaction to their latest accessory endeavor: an attainable handbag collection for their Elizabeth and James line.

The purses, which will hit stores in July, will carry an average price tag of $500. “The price point is below [Alexander] Wang and [Phillip] Lim but above Marc [Jacobs] and Tory [Burch],” Mary-Kate tells WWD. Her sister, Ashley, adds, “And Rebecca Minkoff. We wanted these bags to be affordable.”

The collection includes every size bag imaginable, from wallet to hobo, in a “somewhat neutral” pallet with “pops of color,” according to Ashley. (Translation: expect to see a lot of the Olsens’ signature shade, black, along with grays and beiges.)

The design duo also translated some of the luxe fabrics they use for their high-end brand, The Row (including Italian suede, leather and haircalf) into the contemporary line. “When it comes down to it, our eye definitely goes to simplicity … and strong hardware and branding,” Mary-Kate says. “In this market, I think it’s important to offer color and special materials.”

Small leather goods will range from $125 – $395, and you can expect to spend between $395 – $625 for bags. Tell us: Are you excited to shop Elizabeth and James handbags?

–Jennifer Cress


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Showing 5 comments

Ramblings of a pr student on

Reblogged this on Ramblings of a PR Professional and commented:
Why do I have a feeling I will end up with one of these purses in the near future?

Maria on

Really People Magazine, do you think “normal” people can really afford a $500 purse? Do you even think about what the average person’s annual income is and think that we are in a position to afford $500 purses!?!?!?!?

Wendy on

$500 is not affordable for a handbag. Even $125 is too much for most of us … $30-60 is a good price. $60-$100 for a nice one. TJ Maxx has knock offs that are just as nice, and WAY less.

Faye on

R U so far removed from normal society that you think a 500 dollar handbag is affordable? Yeah, and why don’t I go out and get a pair of 900 dollar socks while I’m at it since money is no object!!! Please get real!!!!

T.J. Record on

That’s lovely that they’re selling dead animal flesh carriers for only $500! I’m sure the animals were painfully slaughtered knowing their dead corpse’s flesh would be used in an economical way, at least.

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