Counterfeit designer handbags are so yesterday. In China they're going nuts for fake designer shopping bags.
I'm not talking about those lovely leather handbags we use to hit the mall. Instead it seems the Chinese are gaga for the paper bags stamped with designer logos, the ones ordinarily handed to customers with their designer purchases.
Browsing around leading Chinese shopping site Taobao.com reveals paper shopping bags bearing the Hermes, Chanel, and Burberry logos for between 5 and 40 yuan, or 78c to $6.28US.
Taobao.com vendor Wang Xuesheng says that initially the shoppers were popular amongst traders of counterfeit handbags, who no doubt packaged them with their replica merchandise. However, recently the bags have become popular amongst independent who appear unfazed that the shoppers are fakes.
"Most people buy the bags only for the logo," he explained. "In fact, if you take a close look at the bag, you will easily discover that the material is different from authentic ones."
Apparently people are buying them as an alternative to regular totes, and to hold gifts for friends. I can only imagine the disappointment of those friends when they find there's no designer stash inside the bag!
Knocking off designer shoppers sounds like a nice way to make a few bucks, but Mo Daiqing, a senior analyst with the China E-commerce Research Center reminds would-be counterfeiters that selling fake paper bags is still infringing copyright.
This is one of the weirder trends I've heard. Can you imagine investing in a designer paper bag, whether it's fake or not?