I’m very much in two minds about designer-inspired bags. Yes, they’re far more accessible and bring good design to the masses. No, because those stores didn’t originate the design so why should they profit?

Yes, because they’re cheap and also no, precisely because they’re cheap. Uhuh, we all know designer bags are over-priced but budget prices scrimp on materials and wages (though high end bags aren’t immune from this either, on occasion).

On balance, personally I prefer to buy the real thing but of course it’s not always remotely possible; which is where the highstreet and its raft of ‘designer-inspired’ copies comes in. I’ve found eight decent ‘homages’ to the real thing, but let me know your feels on the issue in the comments.

Alexander McQueen.

Kenzo Kalifornia zip clutch bag, €310, Brown Thomas.


Holy shit, I can barely tell them apart. Want a 3.1 Phillip Lim Pashli Trapeze backpack for €650 or a Forever 21 version for €24.95? You decide.

Stradivarius has a Sophie Hulme tote bag copy too, for €25.99. The real, lovely leathery deal? €700.

Stella McCartney.