Pharrell Williams is gearing up for the launch of his exclusive Louis Vuitton Millionaire Speedy bag collection with celebrity support from the likes of LeBron James and PJ Tucker. But it’s already getting pushback from animal rights group PETA.
Williams, who became the men’s creative director of Louis Vuitton in February, designed the bag with millionaires in mind.
Williams recently told GQ that he “reimagnined it as a Canal Street counterfeiter might, in primary colors, but on leather so soft it seems to melt when you hold it in your arm.”
The bag is currently available on a made-to-order basis. Made from crocodile leather and built with gold hardware on its handles and shoulder strap, Millionaire Speedy features diamond-encrusted pendants. Available in yellow, red, green, blue and brown, the bag retails for $1 million.
PETA is angered by the use of crodolies to make the bag.
“When you were made men’s creative director of Louis Vuitton [in February 2023], we hoped animals would get lucky and that you would choose vegan fabrics, which are the preference of today’s ethical and environmentally conscious consumers,” PETA vice president Lisa Lange wrote in an open letter. “But we aren’t happy to note your newest design, the “Millionaire” Speedy bag, which is crafted from crocodile skin, because when it comes to animals being used for fashion, it isn’t beautiful—it’s abuse.”
However, NBA players such as Tucker and James do not seem to be bothered by the use of animal products.
Tucker, who plays for the Los Angeles Clippers, posted a photograph of himself on Instagram holding his red sneakers in one hand and clutching the brown Speedy Bag in the other. His caption read, “So be it, so be it.”
James, who plays for the Los Angeles Lakers, was featured on Louis Vuitton’s Instagram with the green version of the Millionaire Speedy worn across his body.
Williams’ Influence On Fashion and Music
Williams, who reportedly has a net worth of $250 million, unveiled the handbag during Paris Fashion Week in June with fanfare. Throughout Paris Fashion Week, Williams was seen holding the yellow Millionaire Speedy at various events and fashion shows.
A 13-time Grammy winner, Williams also known for having an influence in and love for fashion. In 2003, he co-founded Billionaire Boys Club with fashion designer Nigo. He’s also partnered with brands such as Tiffany & Co., Moncler and Adidas. But for Louis Vuitton, his past collaborations in 2004 and 2008 were so memorable that the brand invited Williams to come on board in February 2023 as the creative director after the death of Virgil Abloh, who had served in the position for several years.
“I am glad to welcome Pharrell back home, after our collaborations in 2004 and 2008 for Louis Vuitton, as our new Men’s Creative Director,” said Pietro Beccari, Louis Vuitton’s chairman and CEO in a statement. “His creative vision beyond fashion will undoubtedly lead Louis Vuitton towards a new and very exciting chapter.”