The world's most expensive handbags (one costs $3.8 million!) 2011

 

 

The "1001 Nights Diamond Purse" by House of Mouawad is covered in diamonds. Cost? $3.8 million

Chanel "Diamond Forever" Classic Bag, $261,000

Chanel "Diamond Forever" Classic Bag, $261,000

This purse features 3.56 carats of diamonds and white gold hardware.

Photo by: Chanel Hermes Matte Crocodile Birkin Bag, $120,000

Hermes Matte Crocodile Birkin Bag, $120,000

Regular Birkins run around $20,000 and up, but this version boasts 10 carats of diamonds and is made of crocodile.

Photo by: Hermes Louis Vuitton Raindrop Besace purses, $1,960 each

Louis Vuitton Raindrop Besace purses, $1,960 each

Who's ready to take out the trash?

Photo by: Louis Vuitton Leiber Precious Rose, $92,000

Leiber Precious Rose, $92,000

It's a flower! Covered in jewels! 42.56 carats of diamonds, pink sapphires, and tourmaline to be exact, and there's only one in the world.

Photo by: judithleiber.com Hilde Palladino Gadino Bag, $38,470

Hilde Palladino Gadino Bag, $38,470

This bag looks basic, but 39 white diamonds are hidden in clasps.

Photo by: gadino.no Lana Marks Cleopatra Bag, $100,000

Lana Marks Cleopatra Bag, $100,000

This limited-edition alligator clutch has 1,500 black and white diamonds set in white gold.

Photo by: lanamarks.com LV Tribute Patchwork Bag, $42,000

LV Tribute Patchwork Bag, $42,000

To create this monstrosity, 15 different Louis Vuitton patterns were cut up and put back together into 20 of these patchwork purses.

Photo by: Louis Vuitton Marc Jacobs Carolyn Crocodile Handbag, $30,000

Marc Jacobs Carolyn Crocodile Handbag, $30,000

This purple croc bag was a popular offering from a favorite designer despite the high price.

Photo by: Getty Images Louis Vuitton New Age Traveler backpack, $54,500

Louis Vuitton New Age Traveler backpack, $54,500

How is this ugly bag with what looks like phone cables hanging down worth over 50k? We may never know.

Photo by: Louis Vuitton Fendi Selleria Bag, $38,000

Fendi Selleria Bag, $38,000

If animal fur is your thing, these bags can be custom made with rare sable and chinchilla.

Photo by: Fendi

The "1001 Nights Diamond Purse" by House of Mouawad is covered in diamonds. Cost? $3.8 million

Since the fashion industry is constantly recycling past styles and struggling to come up with new concepts, often "in the know" stylish types attempt to get noticed by creating or wearing the most expensive or most extravagant item possible (ahem, Lady Gaga). Until now the big status get was the $20,000 Hermes Birkin bag (made famous by Samantha on "Sex and the City"), but it's nothing compared to House of Mouawad's new "1001 Nights Diamond Purse," which clocks in at a whopping $3.8 million.

Encrusted with over 381 carats of diamonds, this heart-shaped bag has been named the world's most expensive handbag by the Guinness Book of World Records. In it, 4,517 diamonds were used—105 yellow, 56 pink and 4,356 colorless—and it took 10 artisans 1,100 hours to complete. They dedicated four months to the project.

“The Mouawad 1001 Nights Diamond Purse is designed to mesmerize with its lavish attention to detail and elaborate workmanship incorporating thousands of diamonds,” Pascal Mouawad, co-guardian of the House of Mouawad, told the Today Show. The purse was on display at the Doha Jewellery and Watches Exhibition this past weekend, and it is not yet known if there was a buyer.

Crafting luxury items is not new territory for the Dubai-based jewelry company. The House of Mouawad is responsible for creating several of the annual holiday Fantasy Bras for Victoria’s Secret, as worn by Heidi Klum, Tyra Banks, Karolina Kurkova, and Selita Ebanks. Their value is estimated at up to $11 million each.

But diamonds are not the only way to make things expensive in fashion these days. Last year a fancy sweatpants craze swept the nation, and designers like Alexander Wang, Thakoon, Bottega Veneta, and Michael Kors offered expensive sweats from $250 up to $1,000. Louis Vuitton had a line of purses that literally resembled trash bags selling for $2,000. United Bamboo introduced $500 outfits for your cat, while Rodarte presented $500 socks. And last, but certainly not least, a brand called Pistol Panties created a $3,000 bedazzled bikini you can't even swim in.

While it's fun to look at (and perhaps make fun of) such lavish fashion items, we're astonished that there are some people out there who actually buy these things! We've rounded up a dozen of the most expensive bags we could find ever in existence. Take a look and let us know if you think they're worth their hefty price tags.

Photo by: Fadi Al-assaad / Reuters
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