Kim Kardashian is “lovin’ it” and by it we mean Judith Leiber’s McDonald’s-inspired french fry clutch.
Kim attended an auction last night, hosted by Christie’s and What Goes Around Comes Around, a vintage boutique in NYC. She showed up to the function wearing a pink, liquid latex-esque dress by Versace, the kitschy Leiber clutch, and PVC Yeezy sandals.
Upon further investigation, I found out Kim’s french fry bag retails for an eye-watering $5,695 on ModeSens. But that’s not too surprising, considering that similar Judith Leiber minaudière bags tend to go for no less than $2,000. There’s a reason Leiber can charge such high prices though—because she’s catering to high brow clients. Or, at least, she used to, before passing away in April.
Minaudières are rooted in high society, “evening dressing,” and galas. Judith Leiber honed her high society aesthetic in the 60’s, when she was designing for first ladies like Mamie Eisenhower, Nancy Reagan and Barbara Bush. JL’s popularity widened after the brand’s big TV moment came circa late 90’s, when Mr. Big gifted Carrie Bradshaw a dowdy Swan-shaped Leiber bag in “Sex and the City”.
On the contrary, the minaudière has become the de facto “it” accessory on the red carpet over the last decade. What’s the final frontier? Street style minaudière madness a la Kim K. More obscure trends have taken hold, though, like underwear as outerwear or Crocs, for instance.
Jana Matheson, VP and creative director at Judith Leiber, is the brains behind the brand’s recent proliferation. Two years ago, she told Fashionista, “The goal for me is to continue to make the evening bag approachable. Educating younger clients that you can change your bag when you go out. I see a tote bag in the evening and it makes me insane.”
Matheson’s got big ideas to back up her vision of democratizing the minaudière, too. Last year, she worked on a collaboration between Judith Leiber and Alexander Wang. Leiber’s ladylike sensibility collided with Wang’s streetwear cool in the form of money. Literally. The two brands created a $4,995 minaudière shaped like a fat stack of banded dollar bills, fit for style heavyweights like Rihanna or Beyoncé. And it’s sold out.
And Matheson’s efforts are not in vain. Now, practically every celebrity at a red carpet event carries a minaudière, and many times, it’s Judith Leiber. You can now add Kim Kardashian and her expensive french fry bag to the top of that list.
Shop our edit of Judith Leiber clutches.