Bags from Milk Tea Brand Chagee Are China’s New Dior Totes

Paper bags from the milk tea chain are uncannily similar to a Dior bag, and have become the material of choice for DIY projects

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5:13 PM HKT, Mon March 11, 2024 1 mins read

Chinese consumers are transforming bags from Yunnanese milk tea brand Chagee into their own line of products: DIY cylinder purses, book covers, tissue boxes, and even foot baths.

Some Chinese netizens have ridiculed these DIY innovations. “Why don’t you just carry the books with the bag?” was one Weibo user’s response to a DIY book cover. Others defended the trend, saying that it’s a waste to not up-cycle such high-quality, aesthetically-pleasing bags.

Indeed, Chagee’s blue and off-white bags are surprisingly elegant. The longer one stares at the milk tea bag, the more familiar it seems: From the colors down to the capital letters, the milk tea bag looks undeniably like a Maria Grazia Chiuri Dior book tote.

The popularity of Chagee’s and Dior’s design proved one thing: Chinese art penetrates both time and culture.

A comparison of Chagee’s milk tea bag and Dior’s tote bag. Image via Bilibili.

This uncanny similarity has sparked debate online, with some Chinese netizens pointing out that Chinese prints inspired Chiuri. After all, the bag’s blue is a Chinese porcelain blue, and the pastoral background is a familiar motif in Chinese traditional paintings. Chagee’s use of a similar design can be seen as an attempt to update Chinese traditional tea culture.

Accordingly, many of the DIY influencers transforming Chagee bags have picked up on the brand’s traditional Chinese aesthetics. Most videos of their projects are soundtracked by Chinese folk or classical music. As seen on Bilibili, netizens have created Chinese fans, pencil holders, and origami lotus flowers out of the bags. Taking things further, one netizen even recreated a Chagee store using a milk tea cup.


The DIY Chagee store. Image via Bilibili.

These viral transformation of Chagee bags once again illustrates how online creators are tirelessly transforming Chinese culture for the contemporary era.

Banner image via Bilibili.

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