Fashion’s Most Outrageous Handbags of 2022

Moving away from minimalism, fashion has recently seen a slew of maximalist and surreal designs, especially in handbags. With the recent launch of Balenciaga’s trash bag-shaped handbag and JW Anderson’s 3D printed dove clutch, we’ve rounded up some of the most outrageous styles spotted recently. Our list includes Louis Vuitton’s Paint Can bag available in six colorways and Thom Browne’s lobster-shaped backpack, as well as pieces from up-and-coming brands such as Solitude Studios and Grace Ling.

Keep scrolling to see some of fashion’s most outrageous bags this season.

THE PRICE: $1,790
EVALUATION: 4/10

Although it may look like a trash bag, this handbag from Balenciaga is made of calfskin (hence its high price tag). Arriving in black, blue, yellow and white, the design – first unveiled at Demna’s apocalyptic Fall/Winter 2022 runway – is completed with subtle branding to the front. It’s no surprise for a brand like Balenciaga to release a trash bag-like design for nearly US$2,000 – a pink tote bag fetched US$1,490 in 2019. With the bag’s recent release trash, there’s no doubt the style will be spotted on Instagram and it’s already been dubbed “a success.” But realistically, would you invest US$1,790 in something that could be mistaken for an actual plastic trash bag?

THE PRICE: $890
EVALUATION: 7/10

This bag from Grace Ling is probably one of the most practical models on this list. The shoulder bag has two zippered openings on each side, making it (a little) easier to find your wallet or phone inside. Cheerful ends add a touch of high fashion to an otherwise roomy everyday bag.

THE PRICE: $890
EVALUATION: 3/10

This pigeon-shaped clutch was first revealed on JW Anderson’s FW22 show alongside other surreal designs such as dresses with underwired hemlines and cropped tops made up of a bunch of attached rubber straps each other. The 3D printed bag has a side opening under the pigeon’s wing and is branded with JW Anderson on the inside. While this handbag is obviously not made for carrying your essentials, it’s definitely a showpiece that will get you snapping photos during Fashion Week.

THE PRICE: $2,360
EVALUATION: 6/10

This bag by Virgil Abloh looks like a can of paint with the Louis Vuitton monogram printed all over. Offered in a variety of colors – purple, yellow, green, orange, red and blue – the shoulder bag first debuted on Louis Vuitton’s FW22 menswear show, which was a celebration of the late designer. As explained in the product description, the paint bucket is “roomy enough to hold two phones and other personal items.” Definitely more practical than the pigeon clutch, this bag adds a playful touch to any look.

THE PRICE: £335 GBP (about US$390) for the Essence Waxed Skin Bag£890 GBP (approximately US$1,036) for the seaweed bag
EVALUATION: 8/10

Copenhagen-based Solitude Studios creates knitwear, handbags and more from local materials. The brand’s made-to-order Essence Oilskin Bag and Seaweed Bag use leftover yarns that are purchased from textile production companies. The first is water-repellent and features a silver buckle created in collaboration with the artist ZWYRTECHwhile the latter is the perfect surreal piece to add to your rotation.

THE PRICE: $3,290
EVALUATION: 7/10

Lobster-shaped backpacks, anyone? Thom Browne’s $3,290 bag is crafted from top-grain leather and arrives in all black in the shape of a crustacean. Lined with Thom Browne style blue-red stripes, the design features adjustable backpack straps. This editor rates this bag 7 out of 10 for its fun shape and design while still being a bit practical.

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