To outsiders, fashion can seem like a frivolous thing and when we look at Chrome Hearts’ toilet plunger which was initially sold for $1,000 and now selling for over $2,200 on curator Justin Reed’s website, we get it. From the luxurious Chanel boomerang to Supreme’s brick, fashion is never out of ideas to put out the randomest objects that cost more than most of our rents. But what is the actual point of them and who is actually buying them?
From Prada’s Tic Tac Toe set to Tiffany & Co.’s First Aid Kit, luxury brands have strayed from ready to wear to create ordinary yet somewhat wild objects and paraphernalia, notably of which is Supreme. In 2017, the streetwear brand known for its boxed logo tees released in 2017 a pack of 5 Tall Boy bags, essentially brown paper bags to hide your alcohol in, now reselling for $125. Supreme has also produced a Parachute Toy with a miniature paratrooper figurine, a compass and a switchblade-turned-comb just to name a few.
Chrome Hearts is another brand that relishes in the absurdity of the overpriced everyday object, or as the brand calls them, “oddities”. There was the silver Puzzle Cube, a luxurious reimagined rubik’s cube that sold for $6,000 and, just two years ago, a pair of silver thumbtack pins – and that’s just scratching the surface on the brand who gave us the ebony toilet plunger.
Granted, some of these objects are supposed to have a certain useful quality to them. Hermes’ Lantern does technically do its job at lighting up the room, for a mere $22,500 though. And Balenciaga’s mattress, even though no one should ever want to lay on this $46,300 stack of fuzzy blankets held together by nylon cords, does technically help fulfil a basic human need.
The most glaring question when it comes to seeing these objects’ prices, whether they serve any purpose, is who is actually buying these? To be able to buy a $3,300 (approx.) Louis Vuitton Jenga Tower, it goes without saying that you definitely need to have heaps of disposable income. A mentality we’ve seen rising recently, especially in line with Chrome Hearts’ own evolution, is that of “f*ck you money”. This saying is defined by an employee’s ability to say “f*ck you” to their boss, considering they have enough money to quit their job and live an extravagant lifestyle that includes treating their dogs with a $5,000 Chrome Hearts concrete bowl.
Luxury fashion ready-to-wear has never been affordable, and neither will its ludicrously priced mundane items be. While most of us will never attain this kind of financial freedom, we can still appreciate these objects for their design qualities. When fashion takes itself seriously, and a lot of the time it does, it’s refreshing to see Prada making a paperclip because why the h*ll not. We’ll just avoid looking at the sale price next time.
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