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Inspiration and Imitation

 

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(My two most-worn bags, my fauxchamp and my Kate Spade Wellesley!)

I read a bunch of different sites (post on that later), but ever since I posted a picture of the Gucci Dionysus bag in Blooms, I’ve been thinking a lot about fashion, and the ethics of it. Specifically, carrying a designer imitation or dupe–is it acceptable if you have no idea, or is it supremely tacky if you know exactly what you’re doing?

And as I thought about things, I came to the realization that there were things that I strongly believed.

  1. People should of course, always get credit for their work.
  2. Fashion is so, so, so influential, to the point where people don’t even notice it!
  3. You should not have to sacrifice an arm and a leg in order to achieve a look that you want.
  4. What you wear does not determine who you are as an individual.

It is so easy to find a dupe for any designer item that you want, literally after posting that picture on Facebook, out of curiosity it took me about five seconds to find a duplicate for less then ONE PERCENT of the cost of the Gucci bag.

Gucci Dionysus Blooms Bag- $2,700

Aliexpress Dupe- $23.00

And here’s the thing–it doesn’t matter if the AE dupe is worse quality, slightly different or anything, people buy them like hotcakes, because of the fact that they are LITERALLY LESS THAN ONE PERCENT OF THE PRICE OF THE GUCCI BAG.

I mean, $2,700–what would you do if you magically found that amount in your purse one day? Certainly, you probably would not buy the Gucci Dionysus Blooms Bag.

People vary in their opinions of wearing dupes, “fakes” or “knock-offs,” but what really made me think was how rude some people were. A lot of people commented that people who carry dupes are “poor,” “tacky,” or “fake,” on the different blogs that I found, but the fact of the matter is, are you really going to judge someone’s character on an item that they are carrying?

It doesn’t make someone less of a person if they choose to carry a piece that is inspired by a designer piece, and by owning a designer piece you are not given the permission to falsely assume things about someone. The biggest argument I saw was that people believed those carrying designer inspired items were fake because they were “passing off” a false item for a real one.

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(Image found on Pinterest–it didn’t have a real source, please tell me if you find one!)

Fashion is so influential. Designers inspire each other, and it’s this crazy industry where one floral handbag can unleash an army of floral handbags with five thousand variations. It’s one, where you can purchase an item simply because you like it, and it could be a dupe or “knock-off” of something that is higher end. Look at InTheirCloset, they have posts and posts of various high-end designers inspiring variations and dupes from other retailers. Someone at Forever21 could very much be purchasing that Rebecca Minkoff look-alike, because they like it, and someone else could be purchasing it because they really love how it has the Rebecca Minkoff look, without the price tag. It does not make either person better or worse than the other, it just simply means that item is appealing to them both.

Or a young lady could purchase a green floral Kate Spade bag, because she loves the color green and floral print, without noticing that it is very similar to an expensive Gucci bag, that she would never buy.

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(Surprise, it’s me!)

It happens, and people of all walks of life, at one point or another have worn an item that is inspired by a higher end item, whether they realize it or not.

My fauxchamp is actually my second most worn bag, and I actually bought it with the full knowledge that it looked like a Longchamp Le Pliage. It literally took me about five seconds to google an alternative, and I am fully going to admit that I love my fauxchamp. I carry it all around Chicago, and I never regret the decision to buy a nylon tote off of Amazon instead of buying the real deal.

I wanted a Longchamp, and despite the fact that it was such a lust-worthy item for me, I quite honestly did not find it practical to shell out $145 for a bag that I carry to class, school, on the subway, and out and out. I honestly carry so much in there, and throw so much garbage in it, that I’m surprised that it’s not on its last leg. And that’s exactly why I didn’t want to shell out $145 for a Longchamp. Because if I had done so, my bag wouldn’t be my carry-all, whatever, bag. I would have felt way too bad carrying it to class and throwing all the things I throw inside of it, if I had paid $145 for it. I would have felt really bad throwing in spare shoes and random things!

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I don’t feel bad at all, doing it to my fauxchamp, because it was $14 on Amazon, and I know that if needed, I could just buy another one to carry all of my needs. (I could buy TEN of these for the price of one Longchamp!). And I don’t think this makes me a terrible, or fake person, because I am always honest and always clear that my olive green bag is exactly that–just a bag that I bought off of Amazon.

And I literally tell everyone that’s it not a Longchamp, and I’m not that special–I literally bought a nylon tote off of Amazon.

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(Image found on Pinterest–it didn’t have a real source, please tell me if you find one!)

Dupes are just that–dupes, and it doesn’t make you less of a person for wearing one. It is a little sketch if you’re lying and pretending like it’s the real deal, but there is nothing wrong wearing something that’s inspired or similar to another piece. Look at makeup…there’s a whole industry devoted to making similar shades and colors, and duplicates to well known higher end brands, but you wouldn’t tear down someone if their blush was a dupe for Nars’ Orgasm, would you?

There is quite honestly, no harm in being inspired. They say that imitation is the highest form of flattery, don’t they?

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