Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen are launching a new “affordable” handbag line.
The twin sisters sell backpacks now under their high-end line, The Row, which cost around $39,000. They’re now expanding into a line which we could actually afford! (I’ll wait and believe it when I see it.)
In an interview with WWD, the twins, both 26, said that their unique selling point will be providing designer arm candy with half the price tag.
‘We’ve always wanted to do handbags, but we really wanted to understand the market first and what was missing from the market and what’s already existing on the market,’ Ashley explained.
Mass-market appeal: Ashley (left) and Mary-Kate (right) want their new handbags to be affordable
‘We wanted the price point to be strong,’ Mary-Kate continued. ‘The price point is below [Alexander] Wang and [Phillip] Lim but above Marc [Jacobs] and Tory [Burch].’
Ashley added: ‘And Rebecca Minkoff. We wanted these bags to be affordable.’
The former child stars-turned-designers’ extensive new bag range will go on sale in July and includes satchels, shoppers, messenger bags, backpacks, cross-body bags, clutches, pouches and wallets.
Prices range from $125 to $395 for small leather items to $395 to $625 for bags – a stark contrast to the pair’s luxury brand The Row which stocks bags in the $2,000 to $55,000 price range.
Describing the collection, Mary-Kate said: ‘When it comes down to it our eye definitely goes to simplicity… and strong hardware and branding.
‘In this market, I think it’s important to offer color and special materials. The great thing about suede and haircalf is they take color so beautifully.’
Ashley added that while there are ‘pops of color’, the palette is in keeping with the twins’ favorite neutral and ‘wearable’ hues.
The twins have big plans for Elizabeth and James and intend to open retail stores within two years in New York, Los Angeles and South Florida in the hopes of expanding to Tokyo, Seoul and London in the future.
I think a cheaper line will do really well. I actually like a lot of their designs, and knowing I might some day be able to afford one makes me like them more!