TBT: An Ode to Chanel’s Graffiti Backpack


When you think Chanel, what’s the first thing that pops into your head? Is it the brand’s ubiquitous CC logo or Classic Flap Bag? What about its ability to put on a themed runway show like no other? Maybe you think of the brand’s myriad of novelty bags like the Chanel Cassette Tape Bag or the Chanel Doll Clutch. Or, if you’re anything like me, you think of the brand’s many seasonal runway bags that reached icon status over the years.

For me, one of those icons is the divisive Chanel Grafitti Backpack from the brand’s Spring/Summer 2014 collection. Debuted on the runway during Paris Fashion Week in September of 2013, it’s hard to believe it has been nine years since this cult favorite first graced us with its presence.

*Wipes tears, knowing full well I’ll never own it*

A Favorite of the Stars

When the bag was released, it started a frenzy of sorts. While some people absolutely hated it, others were obsessed, clamoring to get their hands on one (I was definitely part of the latter, I guess I’ve got a thing for bags that most people despise). The Chanel Grafitti Backpack would go on to become an early 2010s icon, with one celeb after the next sporting it on the streets (Khloe Kardashian, Bella Thorne, Chloe Grace Moretz and Lily Allen among others). The bag garnered a lot of attention thanks to its $3,400+ price tag for a canvas backpack (keep in mind a small Boy Bag made of leather cost $3,700 at the time).

Art Inspired

Designed by the late Karl Lagerfeld, The entire collection that season was inspired by the arts, which was culturally relevant during its creation. There was a lot of volatility happening within the art world, and Lagerfeld didn’t miss a beat that season, blaring Jay-Z’s ‘Picasso Baby’ as models strutted down the runway clutching art-inspired bags and wearing literal works of art. Unsurprisingly, Lagerfeld focused on adding a bit of graffiti to his show that season, which is a largely controversial art form.

Whether you liked it then or not, it’s hard to ignore the bag’s cultural relevance, and it will forever remain a part of modern handbag history. Not to mention, its retail value continues to sky-rocket, with versions selling for way above the 5-figure mark.

Do you remember this bag? Do you like it? Do you own it?

Chanel Grafitti Backpack Sothebys



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