A handbag that is ‘smaller than a grain of salt’ has sold for over $63,000 – just two weeks after the high-end fashion brand behind the bizarre accessory was mercilessly ridiculed for the creation. Brooklyn-based company MSCHF found itself at the centre of immense social media backlash after it debuted the tiny purse earlier this month – which is so small, you actually need a microscope to properly see its design.
Aptly named the Microscopic Bag, it measures just 657 by 222 by 700 micrometres, which equates to less than 0.03 inches and is ‘narrow enough to pass through the eye of a needle,’ according to the brand.
Despite many people on the web slamming the bag, it has now sold for tens of thousands of dollars during an online auction held by singer Pharrell Williams’ auction house Joopiter on Wednesday, according to CNN. The identity of the buyer has not been revealed.
The neon green bag was made from a 3D printer and was modelled after Louis Vuitton’s OnTheGo MM bag, which typically retails for around $3,100. MSCHF – the same company who was behind the much-mocked $350 giant rubber cartoon boots – first announced the launch of the bag via its Instagram account on June 14, writing at the time, ‘There are big handbags, normal handbags, and small handbags, but this is the final word in bag miniaturization.
‘As a once-functional object like a handbag becomes smaller and smaller, its object status becomes steadily more abstracted until it is purely a brand signifier.’ Kevin Wiesner, the chief creative officer of MSCHF, explained to the New York Times afterwards that the brand chose that specific Louis Vuitton bag as the muse for its design because the LV logo could still be seen on the microscopic 3D-printed creation.
He admitted that it had not asked for permission from Louis Vuitton to use its logo on the purse, adding, ‘We are big in the “ask forgiveness, not permission” school.’ He explained it was ‘created out of resin through a process called two-photon polymerization,’ which is a kind of 3-D printing for microscopic objects.’
‘I think “bag” is a funny object because it derives from something rigorously functional. But it has become jewellery,’ he said. He added that the brand was also inspired by Pharrell’s ‘love’ of oddly shaped objects. The singer recently became the head of Louis Vuitton’s menswear.
‘Pharrell loves big hats, so we made him an incredibly small bag,’ said Kevin. When the samples of the bag arrived in his office months ago, he admitted that the team lost several of them due to their miniature size.
As soon as MSCHF shared details of the peculiar bag online, it was brutally trolled on social media. Instagram and Twitter users were quick to poke fun at the ridiculous nature of its design, and memes about it quickly began popping up all over the web.
‘Will this fit under an aeroplane seat?’ one person joked. Another wrote, ‘Can I pay with micro-dollars for that?’
‘Finally, a bag to fit all my patience,’ said someone else. A different user asked, ‘Does it come with a microscope?’
‘Your girl gonna be looking for that bag for hours before you leave the house,’ a fifth comment read.
‘Great. I love to buy useless stuff,’ said another.