Unisex fashion brand Telfar will allow customers to pre-order its in-demand Shopping Bag in their chosen colour and size for 24 hours, as part of a new initiative announced on Monday.
Named the Bag Security Program, the pre-sale will start on Wednesday 19 August at 9am EST.
The brand’s totes have gained cult status, seen on the arm of everyone from Solange to Selena Gomez. The bag’s strong, New York-led following has led them to be dubbed the Bushwick Birkin by fans.
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But unlike the Birkin, the US label retails its bags from $150 (£113) and has inclusivity in its DNA, with the strapline “it’s not for you – it’s for everyone” on its website.
There has “never been an It Bag like this before” according to The Cut, who call them a “symbol of group identity for young creative New Yorkers”.
It’s therefore no surprise that the bags sell out as fast as they can be made. The brand, founded by Telfar Clemens, also has problems with bots who dominate its restocks and recently caused the site to close temporarily.
Telfar’s latest restock earlier this month saw the same result, which has led the brand to announce th new scheme, allowing it to plan production in order to meet demand.
“Telfar is a Black-owned, non-gendered fashion project established in 2004. The Shopping Bag first dropped in 2014 — meaning: our bag ain’t new — it’s the world that changed. Let’s keep it changing”, the Instagram post announcing the scheme reads.
“But we are not about hype and scarcity. The whole point of our bag is accessibility and community”, it adds.
“But when thousands of bags sell per second we can’t even know how many to make. We plan production 6 months in advance. It takes time and money to make bags and we are 100% self financed.
“The BAG SECURITY PROGRAM let’s you secure your bag without the stress of drops.” [Sic]
Telfar’s website details that it plans to fulfil the pre-orders between 15 December and 15 January, depending on demand.
It advises more drops will be coming if shoppers prefer to purchase this way and avoid waiting for theirs to be made to order.
Made-to-order fashion is a growing industry trend in fashion, and one that helps reduce waste and promotes a more considered, slow approach to buying, rather than promoting the instant satisfaction typically attached to fast fashion purchases.
Brands like Olivia Rose and Maison Cleo are built on this custom model, while designers like Emilia Wickstead and Jenny Packham offer made-to-measure services in addition to ready-to-wear.
Full details on Telfar’s Bag Security Program can be found here.