Friday, April 24, 2009

Rebecca Minkoff makes Green Marketing Effort look bad

Rebecca Minkoff, I love your morning after bags and studded clutches, but the "bread and wine" totes are a disappointment. The blue canvas tote on the right is $72 on Bluefly, and the royal canvas and leather tote on the left is a whooping $111. The words "WINE" and "BREAD" are slapped over the fronts of the bags, and Rebecca Minkoff's name is plastered in big letters on the sides of the blue canvas tote. "Big on style" indeed.

Recall that the "movement" for carrying fashionable shopping bags was started by Anya Hindmarch's "I'm not a plastic bag" bag, which was sold out worldwide and spun off tons of imitation bags (at least in Asia). Recall that the "I'm not a plastic bag" bag only cost around USD $15. Since then, a number of brand names including Marc by Marc Jacobs and Juicy Couture, has come out with "green bags", and I got tired of telling people about the ridiculous prices on them.

If you really wanted to save the world, you would buy one less tote and reuse the ones you have religiously until you've worn them out. If you never reuse your totes, buying yet another pricey "green tote" is just additional burden to the ecology of the world. PLUS, if you really wanted to help the earth, you would buy an inexpensive reusable tote like this one below (from Old Navy) and donate the rest of your money to organizations that are cleaning up the earth, or working towards innovations that will save energy. Better yet, you can use your money to buy organic and ecological products on the market (since they are still really pricey due to under-production) and help bring the green market to its market efficiency levels.

Women: Women's Eco-Graphic Totes - Pink

Women: Women's Eco-Graphic Totes - Pink

Available in 6 colors/designs.

By the way, not all shopping totes are "green". Some of them do not use recycled material, some of them are made out of thicker plastic material that sits in the landfill for a longer time, and some of them stay in people's closet never seeing the light of day. I am just saying...sometimes, it is the dubious "green" marketing efforts of otherwise trusted companies that put off the public and make all "green activities" look bad. Sure, all firms are created to maximize profits. Can this be done while minding our impact on earth? I sure hope so.

Go to and for more eco-friendly information.

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