Don’t Stash Your Cash; Just Wear It


In a season rife with going-out-of-business sales and rock-bottom holiday discounts, we’ve come across a few ironic, recession-be-damned items that defy the flailing economy. The latest is this line from California-based label US Rags, featuring a handmade coat and matching vest stitched from old bank-deposit money bags. The bags are made of a heavy natural canvas material and printed with messages like “Return to U.S. Mint,” “Please Do Not Cut Bag When Opening,” and various dollar amounts. Frayed edges, random scuff marks, and rusted-finish skeleton-key closures add to a weathered, worn-in feel. The coat and vest cost $175 and $105, respectively, at Alter 109, and according to co-owner Tommy Cole, they’re selling: Of 25 pieces that arrived last month, the store’s sold about half. “The print looks wacky up close, but they’re really very wearable,” he insists. We wonder what occasion might warrant wearing an ensemble made of bank bags — a downscaled holiday office party, perhaps? Those on a more recession-worthy budget can schlep their gear in a tote made of the same fabric, selling for $45 apiece.

Alter 109, 109 Franklin St., nr. Greenpoint Ave.; 718-784-8818