Just about every Black girl across the world has bought, or attempted to buy a Telfar bag. The popular Black-owned luxury tote, dubbed the Bushwick Birkin, has been making its rounds on social media and beyond. When I first learned about Liberian-American designer Telfar Clemens, I immediately wanted to hop on the purse bandwagon. I wasn’t interested in the trendy aspect of owning the bag, but I wanted to be one of the Black women pushing this affordable, luxury brand to the forefront.
It was time for a Black-owned brand to rival the Louis Vuitton and Gucci, and in my mind, purchasing the $200 medium-size, vegan leather tote bag was going to help make that happen. Unfortunately there is a legit science to securing a Telfar bag. Because it sells out within minutes, shoppers have to sign up for the email list, send in a blood sample, sign over the rights to their first born child, all while doing the Crate Challenge in platforms.
Somehow, I was able to get my hands on the coveted purse right before Beyoncé was spied wearing it to a Basketball game last month. I was so hyped! Now that I had my bag, I wanted to do something that would set it apart from the sea of Telfar bags I’d see on a daily basis.
I hit up Olivia Georgette, a graphic designer and artist that is known for her abstract plant-inspired designs. After sliding in her DMs to see if she was up for the task of revamping my bag, she happily accepted the challenge. Olivia sent over a few design ideas. I picked one, shipped out my bag, and anxiously held my breath until it’s return.
Olivia received my bag and blessed me with a behind-the-scenes shot of how it was coming along. “Just letting you know I’ve started working on your bag and I’m sooooo excited,” she said in a message to me. “I already know your going to love it and it already looks better than the sketch!” she continued.
A little over a week later, Olivia let me know my bag was finished and would be mailed that day. You know that feeling children get on Christmas morning when they’re about to open all of their presents? That’s how I felt when I discovered my USPS box waiting for me the very next day.