Finger Trap handbags
by James Piatt


Product news: these handbags by American designer James Piatt are carried by clamping fingers in woven tubes similar to Chinese finger trap puzzles.

Finger Trap handbags by James Piatt

The weight of the leather bags creates the pull needed to tighten the weave and secure fingers in the tubes.

Finger Trap handbags by James Piatt

Finger traps are often used as practical jokes, involving the wearer struggling to remove their digits from either end of the tube, which is usually woven from bamboo.

Finger Trap handbags by James Piatt

Both ends of the trap have to be pushed inward to relax the mesh and release the fingers. "The finger trap is often used as a metaphor for a problem that can be overcome by relaxing," says Piatt.

Finger Trap handbags by James Piatt

Piatt's small purse comes with one fastening, whereas the larger bag has three finger traps but can also be carried over the shoulder using a removable strap.

Finger Trap handbags by James Piatt

Laser-cut tabs interlock along the seams instead of stitching to create joints that look similar to the tubes.

Finger Trap handbags by James Piatt

Other handbags on Dezeen include a set made from old binocular cases and some made from folded recycled paperSee all our stories about bag design »

  • The bee

    That’s just awful, impractical and useless! Ridiculous.

    • Summer

      My bet is that the bag is more fun at a party.

  • Elliot Nesterman

    Ooh, it's Edward's sister, Edwina Handbaghands.

    • blah

      I remember seeing a video in the 1990s called Edward Penishands. He could have used these bags as well, come to think of it.

  • Summer

    Cool shape and design. Original. Also love the fun, novelty toy vibe. Most interesting how the bags are constructed.

    • douglas

      Seconded. It reminds me of plastic shopping bags with handles that start revolving on the way home and cut off the circulation to your fingers, but with this it’s at least fun and looks beautiful.

      Oops, I mentioned beauty and fun – best prepare myself for the innumerable thumbs down from the indoctrinated killjoy contingent of function police.

  • Ctr

    Why do architects find the ugliest fashions interesting?

    • Paper Mesa

      Why does something need to be beautiful to be interesting?

  • Marie

    In traditional leather working there is often braiding and weaving detailing, though I find the poking fun at functionality clever. Love that there is a strap with this as well.

  • Romain

    The model seems forlorn, I wonder why she looks like she’s hanging her arms in defeat. Oh, wait.

    I would LOVE to see a model walking with her new appendages hanging from her fingers. And because I’m cruel, I would giggle with delight if I could see her running after a bus, waving her arms to catch the drivers attention.

    Okay haute couture was never meant to be practical etc. But still, you have to wonder if the designer is making a joke at our expense. Why would he purposefully show us a woman trapped by her own belongings if not to bait the fashionista crowd?

  • academicone

    Question posed: just because you can, should you? In this case yes, for it brought on responses and may trigger additional creative ideas.

  • offcentre

    Yes you should. Okay, not many people would choose to carry their bag this way but its new and different and functional(-ish) so it should be celebrated for that.