Ikea Responds to Balenciaga's Copycat Move

The Swedish Retailer Helps You Distinguish an Original From the Fakes

By Ann-Christine Diaz. Published on Apr 24, 2017

Editor's Pick

Last week, luxe fashion house Balenciaga came out with a massive bright blue tote that looks unabashedly like Ikea's Frakta take-home bags consumers can buy for about a dollar at the Swedish retailer. But the Arena extra large shopper sports a price tag with more than a 2,000% markup -- at about $2,145.

This week, Ikea reasserted its own tote as the original, with a post that appears on its retail sites around the world and on its social channels. Created out of Swedish agency ACNE, the ad instructs consumers on how to distinguish an original Frakta from a fake: it rustles when it shakes, it can carry an array of things such as hockey gear, bricks and water, it cleans up easily with a dousing from a garden hose and it has a price tag of just 99 cents.

The post itself saw a super quick turnaround and was conceived nearly as soon as the Balenciaga bag came out. "I wanted to act fast, so we contacted our client the day after and I said, 'We'll have creative work ready within two hours," said ACNE Creative Director Johan Holgrem.

The agency then tapped its own fashion photographer, Anders Kylberg, to shoot the Frakta in studio with similar stylings as that used by Balenciaga. On the very same day, the work went out to Ikea's various markets around the globe.

On Holmgren's part, he wasn't offended by Balenciaga's creative co-opting. It's "unexpected and brilliant," he said. "I like the flirt, and I thought, 'Why not flirt back?' And we did."

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Apr 24, 2017
Creative Director:
Johan Holmgren
Tiago Pinho
Isaac Bonnier
Joel Lindblad
David Aronson
Anders Kylberg
Morten Kjaer

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