Ikea's Genius Response to Designer's $2,000 Copycat Bag
Remember how Balenciaga, the high-end fashion brand, was selling bags that looked crazy-similar to Ikea's plastic blue shopping bags for more than $2,000? Well, in case you need a refresher, here's our story on it. Ikea cut right to the chase by addressing the humor of selling a knock-off of a 99 cent bag for two-grand, and issued a statement helping confused customers tell the difference.
The Swedish furniture giant and meatball vendor (the real story is 50 cent hot dogs, but we digress) gave detailed instructions for how to tell the difference:
1. Shake it. If it rustles, it's the real deal. 2. Multifunctional. It can carry hockey gear, bricks and even water. 3. Throw it in the dirt. A true FRAKTA is simply rinsed off with a garden hose when dirty. 4. Fold it. Are you able to fold it to the size of a small purse? If the answer is yes, congratulations. 5. Look inside. The original has an authentic Ikea tag. 6. The price tag. Only $0.99.
Johan Holmgren, creative director at Ikea's ad agency partner Acne, said he worked quickly after they saw news of the expensive impostor.
"I wanted to act fast, so I called Morten Kjaer from Ikea Creative Hub," he told Adweek. "The day after the Balenciaga bag was launched, I said, 'We'll have the creative work ready within two hours.' We then went to one of our fashion photographers, Anders Kylberg, and shot the bag in his studio, with that same feeling and lighting as the Balenciaga bag. That same day, we sent the finished work to all markets."
Holmgren called Baleciaga's mockery a "flirt," and said he thought, "Why not flirt back?"
Ikea, in the spirit of always keeping it simple, said, "We are deeply flattered that the Balenciaga tote bag resembles the Ikea iconic, sustainable, blue bag for 99 cents. Nothing beats the versatility of a great, big, blue bag."