Telfar’s cult shopping bag gets a shearling Ugg update

The US brand's famed ‘Bushwick Birkin' has been given a shearling-lined makeover by the iconic loungewear label

Telfar’s cult shopping bag gets a shearling Ugg update
(Image credit: Roe Ethridge)

When it comes to breaking with convention, Telfar Clemens continues to set a new standard, particularly when it comes to disrupting the state of luxury fashion. Clemens, who founded his genderless fashion label Telfar back in 2005, has created unisex pieces since the beginning. Noted for his subversions of sportswear silhouettes, he has side-stepped the traditional structures of the fashion industry by eschewing runway shows for more experience-based presentations and now also launches collections only when it makes sense. His mantra: ‘It’s not for you – it’s for everyone’ could not be more poignant today.

These days, Telfar has become best known for its cult shopping bag, which comes in three sizes and a multitude of colours – if you can get your hands on one in the first place. Accessibly priced and utilitarian in design, the faux-leather tote consistently sells out and has earned its place in the canon of desirable bags, which you can find a shopping guide to here. Even the New York politician Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez carries a medium in oxblood.


(Image credit: Roe Ethridge)

On Monday, Telfar, who took home the 2020 CFDA Fashion Award for American Accessories Designer of the Year, launches a new collaboration with Ugg that sees the label’s small and medium sized bags realized in Ugg’s signature chestnut suede and cream shearling. Only available via pre-order on Telfar’s website (a familiar process for anyone who has tried to procure a Telfar bag) for 24 hours, lucky buyers will first received a Telfar Christmas card followed by the bag itself, which will be delivered between March and Juneteenth 2021.


Mildred Piccola in Zenzero Cera, by Gray Matters

No stranger to teaming up with unexpected entities (White Castle and K-Mart are other brands whom Telfar has made associations with in the past), Telfar’s joint effort with Ugg actually stems from Clemens’ unauthorized deconstruction of a classic tall Ugg boot in his Autumn/Winter 2011 offering.

‘I’ve always been obsessed with a certain kind of ubiquity, and when something unique ends up on everybody, that’s our model,’ he says in an interview that was recently published on Ugg’s website. ‘I think a lot of fashion collaborations attempt to elevate something popular. I am not into high and low as a concept, period. What I want to do is get down to the DNA of UGG and see what genes we have in common. To get down to the core of that feeling.’ 


Pei-Ru Keh is a former US Editor at Wallpaper*. Born and raised in Singapore, she has been a New Yorker since 2013. Pei-Ru held various titles at Wallpaper* between 2007 and 2023. She reports on design, tech, art, architecture, fashion, beauty and lifestyle happenings in the United States, both in print and digitally. Pei-Ru took a key role in championing diversity and representation within Wallpaper's content pillars, actively seeking out stories that reflect a wide range of perspectives. She lives in Brooklyn with her husband and two children, and is currently learning how to drive.