Look on the bright side: Tough times are an excellent opportunity to train yourself to recognize the quality of merchandise, and know a good deal when you see it. After all, if you have less to spend, you'll want to be cautious and informed about what you do buy, which is what people like me have been harping on you to do anyway for years now. With that in mind I urge you to check out the new book bag collaboration between Stand Up Comedy (811 E Burnside) and the design school Werkplaats Typografie in the Netherlands. SUC designed the bags themselves, which were assembled right here in town by Madeline Williams and silkscreened with graphics designed from the institution's 12 participating graphic designers. There's only five of each, and at just $40 it's an accessible way to support your love of design both local and international. Obviously they're also unisex, and I'm digging the idea of it being used as an everyday carryall in defiance of the suddenly very gauche four-figure it bag thing.

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