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Calling All Glam Backpackers

The Row's Bags Arrive at Barneys

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Ashley Olsen and Mary-Kate Olsen   
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It was a case of It girls vs. It bags last night at a Barneys party celebrating The Row's new handbag collection. On one side of the room were the Olsen sisters, hard to peel your eyes off of, in an Art Deco beaded dress (Ashley) and a mint-green shorts suit (Mary-Kate) from their Resort collection. And on the other: the new totes, day bags, and evening satchels from their debut line. At 35K, the glazed black crocodile backpack, in particular, received plenty of admiring glances, and not a few caresses. (Two of those five-figure beauties were pre-ordered at The Row's trunk show.)

Years of carrying Balenciagas, Fendis, and Hermès Birkins prepared the Olsens for designing a line of their own, and they had very specific ideas about how it should look. No unnecessary hardware, exacting lines, only the highest-quality materials. "We wanted to do a bag for every occasion," said Mary-Kate, who was carrying a glossy croc iPad case from Resort without an iPad in it, just cigarettes and a cell phone. "Bags had become quite unstructured—as a trend they got gi-normous," Simon Doonan said later on at dinner at The Crown. "To have a bag with precision design that's more considered and beautifully executed is exactly right for now. I spent part of the evening with the black crocodile backpack, and that was a good feeling."

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