MSCHF is continuing its disruptive nature with the launch of a new category: handbags.
The streetwear brand and art collective on Tuesday will release its first handbag, called “Made in Italy.” The handbag, in black and brown leather, is meant to poke fun at the global supply chain, according to MSCHF chief creative officers Kevin Wiesner and Lukas Bentel, who instead of making the bag in the country of Italy, looked to the small town of Italy, Texas, for the product.
“It was initially conceived as a concept where we wanted to make an object that sort of played on this idea of ‘made in X’ place,” Bentel said. “There are so many people that say ‘made in America, made in Italy, made in China.’ It’s very hard to actually make something entirely in a specific region or area. The bag was assembled all in Italy, Texas, but there are pieces that come from all over the place just because of manufacturing constraints. So this is just playing with the idea of that label and trying to flip that on its head as much as possible.”
The handbag, which retails for $550, is embossed with the words “MSCHF” and “Italy” on the sides, and with “Texas” on the bottom.
The creatives also explained the handbag is meant to be a commentary on the perceptions surrounding certain regions and their manufacturing.
“These days if there’s something that’s made in Japan, I’m like, ‘Wow, that’s awesome,’ but there was a period of time where that had a lower-quality connotation and ‘made in China’ had a lower-quality connotation,” Wiesner said. “I think as soon as you get into what it takes to manufacture a product, you start to realize that ‘made in China’ — because that’s where everything is made — is the primo manufacturing destination. That’s where all of the expertise lives.”
While this is MSCHF’s first handbag, the product falls in line with the brand’s other kitschy offerings. The company has released several humorous launches this year, including a collaboration with Rihanna’s Fenty Beauty to create a “Ketchup or Makeup” lip gloss collection and a collection of empty designer shopping bags called “OnlyBags.”
MSCHF’s disruptive nature has had its consequences. In the last two years, MSCHF has been sued by Vans and Nike for copyright infringement for repurposing the two brands’ sneaker styles. The brand also came under controversy last year for its “Satan Shoe,” a Nike Air Max 97 style that was tweaked in collaboration with Lil Nas X, using biblical imagery and containing a drop of human blood.
The “Made in Italy” handbag will be available through MSCHF’s website and app. A small quantity will also be available to purchase at Brooklyn’s Lucali restaurant, which will list the handbag as a menu offering.