For times when your conscious fails you.

This toungue-in-cheek handbag was developed by Dundee University design students Rebecca Smith, Kirsty Sneddon and Leanne Fischler as a statement about consumerism in modern society. The hand crafted and programmed messenger bag is the jimmy cricket of fashion accessories, ideal for sales times and moments of emotionally provoked retail therapy, is designed to make the wearer think twice before spending. Whispering not-so-sweet nothings as you reach for your credit card the ‘excuse me? excuse you!’ messenger bag is your bank accounts best friend and every shop-a-holics worst nightmare. The designers state that:

We have succumbed to an age where the value of money has deteriorated and society as a whole has become materialistic and object-orientated. ‘Excuse me? Excuse you!’ is an attentive character. Embodied within a hand crafted messenger bag, its evocative whispers make spending money emotionally harder. Inverting the value given to consumerism our concept creates a negative association with spending.

Indicating that their intention behind this design is to program yourself to resist the urge to shop and back away from the counter before the spending damage is done.

EXCUSEME

Hide your shame or loud and proud?

While this is predominately a statement design project, one has to wonder how this kid of intervention might work in reality. Firstly the idea of the bag might be a tad embarrassing if you happen to use your bag to carry other essentials, like water, a book or bus tickets. Imagine your handbag announcing to a train full of commuters that “You’re already into your overdraft” when you were simply after your water bottle. What would be kind of useful would be renegade shop-a-holic support groups who infiltrate chain store shoppers somewhere between the fitting room and the counter to ‘down sell’ them. As someone who has done some long hours on the sales side, I will let you know that sales staff are trained to sell, and add on sell you items. I have done this process myself (but like to hope I’ve only up-sold useful items). Rather than being bombarded by sales staff asking you to purchase the matching top, a great belt, or to buy that perfect beach towel that comes for only five dollars extra, you were asked, ‘Do you really need that’, ‘how many items does it match in your closet’ and ‘do you already have one like it’. It could work just as well as this bag without the potential for public transport embarrassment.

Do you know someone who might need a friendly hand bag reminder to resist the urge to shop? Perhaps you can see a use for this for yourself? Let u know your thoughts below.