Do you like bootlegging liquor?

Reason I ask: tons of music festivals coming up this month in Canada. Just three examples:

Sep 11-16: Fredericton, New Brunswick hosts the Harvest Jazz & Blues Festival featuring acts like Bruce Hornsby, Jill Barber, John Mayall, Maceo Parker, and Kathleen Edwards.

Sep 13-16: Victoria, BC is hosting Rifflandia. Headlining bands include The Flaming Lips, Cake, Mother Mother, Dan Mangan, Sloan, Band of Skulls, and The Dudes.

Sep 19-23: Montreal hosts the POP Montréal International Music Festival featuring David Byrne, Grizzly Bear, K’naan, Deerhoof, The Sadies, and Stereolab’s Laetitia Sadier.

They sound like great parties…

Lovers with beer

…so let me ask you this question: When you were a teenager, did you sneak liquor into concerts by duct-taping bottles to your leg?

Despite my small-town roots and notorious Scottish cheapness, I somehow missed out on this simple bootlegger trick. I usually just smuggled cut-rate vodka into concerts by drinking too much/too fast in the back of my buddy’s pickup. And other times I wore a Wine Bra.

But my superfine girlfriend assures me that, for women, a thigh-mickey is standard operating procedure.

“There’s a reason mickeys are curved like the shape of a young woman’s leg. The only downside is the rash,” she says.

On that note, I have happy news for female bootleggers. There’s a new product designed to disguise your travel/concert/day-drinking. It’s called The Bag-in-Bag wine Vernissage and it’s basically a box of wine disguised as a designer purse.

Vernissage 2 purses
How brilliant is that?

This cleverly designed purse conceals 3 litres of French syrah/cabernet blend (in the dark box), and 3 litres of French chardonnay/viognier (in the light box). The box itself features a cotton braided handle, ‘gold’ screws and bolts, a checkered painted matte texture, and a shiny Louis Vuitton-esque coat. It’s no wonder these purses are targetted at female drinkers aged 25 and up.

Vernissage accessories

According to this BC liquor site, the wine purses sell for $49.99 each or about $12.74/bottle. The red wine purse “goes well with red and white meat, poultry and aged cheeses” while the white wine purse “pairs well with flavoursome fish and seafood dishes, particularly with Asian influences.”

Pouring from purse

According to Packagingoftheworld.com (your favourite website, I have no doubt), these wine box purses were designed two years ago in Sweden by freeland graphic designer Sofia Blomberg, who created the unique packaging, and wine entrepreneur (winetrepreneur?) Takis Soldatos, who created the packaging’s no doubt delicious contents.

Man holds purse

According to NPR story entitled “No More Shame”, the bags are imported to the USA by Squish Wines whose CEO, Elliot Stern, says it’s a “‘whole new concept of design’ meant to appeal to a classy lady heading out to lunch with the girls or dinner with her significant other.” I can also see the wine purse being handy at your next uncomfortable family reunion/Thanksgiving dinner with your judgy-pants Amish relatives. The only down side: when your wine purse bag is full, you need a second purse — or a hidden fanny pack — to carry all the stuff you’d normally carry in your purse.

Other than that, the wine purse is such a genius invention, it won the “Most Innovative” design at the 2010 Carton Awards. Oh, and if you’re wondering, the next Carton Awards will be held later this month, September 19-22, in Copenhagen. See you there!

I will personally be attending this year’s red-carpet Carton Awards gala* with my superfine girlfriend. And that luxury handbag she’ll be carrying?

That’s not a purse.

— Ken Hegan

* not really true. However, if the Carton Awards committee decides to fly me in by private jet, then LOOK OUT, DENMARK

Read all Ken’s stories here and follow him on Twitter: @KenHegan

Images courtesy Vernissage

Thanks to Christi at BuenoStyle

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