The Ups and Downs of Monogrammed Logos

March 10, 2011 - 12:58 pm 4 Comments

You see them on the street. You see them in restaurants. You see them in the coffee line. Bags are everywhere. They are the quintessential, number one tool a woman uses to hold all of her belongings. A woman’s best friend. And in return, their carriers like to keep in good company. Louis Vuitton. Gucci. Chanel. Coach. If you don’t got ‘em, you want ‘em. Which means getting excited over a designer bag street sighting while sizing up the lucky woman carrying the purse you covet.

The biggest enabler of purse envy is the monogrammed logo.

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Take a luxurious bag and slap on the designer’s initials? Before you know it, you’re the woman with the Louis Vuitton. The popular girl with the Coach bag. Without even opening your mouth, the bag says something about you. It says you can afford to spend money on luxury items and you aren’t afraid to flaunt it. The whole point of monogrammed logos is to establish an elite following. Those who spend a ridiculous amount on a purse are rewarded with the prestige that accompanies designer items. Meanwhile the rest of us, wishing we were as fortunate, put these handbags on a pedestal, worshipping them for all they’re worth.

For the vast majority (myself included), the only way we can tell if a bag is designer is by the logos. Getting overly obsessed with the brand name, we’d prefer that feeling of status over the actual quality of the products, themselves. Enter in knockoffs. On the streets of New York City, Rome, and other cities, women purchase knockoff designer bags every day for virtually nothing so that they look like they can afford luxury items. While this is great for those of us who don’t have thousands of dollars to spend on purses, it also means the designers are losing their exclusivity. Now anyone and everyone can look like they’re carrying a Chanel bag and only the truly perceptive can tell the real from the fake.

True Story: A friend of Spada Media’s found a pretty white bag with multi-colored Louis Vuitton monograms all over it. She thought it would be perfect for summer so she bought it.

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A few days later, she was grocery shopping with an overflowing carriage and two tired, complaining children. Clearly in need of a pick-me-up, she stopped at the Dunkin’ Donuts inside the store to get the kids something to eat and a coffee to deal with all of it. When she took out her new pocketbook to pay, the cashier completely freaked out. She started gasping and pointing at the bag. “That’s a Louis Vuitton! Where did you get one? Paris Hilton has that same exact bag! Oh my god, did you pay $10,000 for it like Paris did?” Our friend burst out laughing and said, “If I could afford $10,000 pocketbooks do you really think I’d be at a Stop&Shop on a rainy day with two kids in tow?” The cashier was completely shocked that the bag wasn’t real, but our friend cheered up!

So what are these monogrammed logos doing for designers? The recognizable aesthetics make the bags universally appealing; however, the brand is undoubtedly cheapened due to knockoff sales. It’s a Catch 22, forcing the designers to decide what’s more important to them: exclusivity or popularity.

4 Responses to “The Ups and Downs of Monogrammed Logos”

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