The 11 Most Idiotically Expensive Versions Of Cheap Products
The mega-rich splurge on fancy cars and 20-bathroom mansions, but that's not true flossing. The only way to really ram home how stupidly wealthy you are is to spend tens of thousands of dollars on things the average person gets at Walmart for under a fiver. Some products are so pointlessly extravagant that the only reason someone might buy them must be spite. Such as ...
How does one charge $395 for a bookmark? Purge yourself of all shame, stitch it from the flesh of baby cows, and call it an Ex-Libris page marker:
Similarly clad in the desiccated skin of prepubescent sheep, the $115 Carmencita page marker has the added bonus of resembling an anal plug inspired by My Little Pony fanfiction:
Pricing includes not just fine leathers and woods, but also the description writers' best efforts. The Equilibre d'Hermes collection of office items boasts that "balance is expressed on several different levels ... in carefully measured proportions ... [that] harmonise in pure, elementary forms ... designed to appeal to the senses and mind." With such premium-quality puffery, it's no wonder that Hermes is selling this maple office waste basket for $7,650:
Or this Taurillon leather-drenched magazine rack for $21,800:
This engraved, hand-lacquered Clou de Selle (eloquently translated by Google as "saddle nail") tissue box is a steal at $840:
Arguably the most pointless item in the Equilibre d'Hermes collection, the $1,875 magnifying glass, owes its price tag to an inexplicably asinine Taurillon leather base:
Gold-Plated Anything: $1,700+
London jewelers Goldgenie will plate just about any item you own with 24-karat gold. Nail clippers? They'll plate 'em. iPhone charger? Plate it good. Entire refrigerator? You bet your sweet ass they'll plate it. They also sell an assortment of pre-gilded items, each more ridiculous than the last:
For only about $35,000, the Goldgenie Segwheel is the most obnoxious incarnation of the "hoverboard" -- and if you've encountered a middle-schooler lately, you know that's saying something. In addition to the gold plating, it integrates the "latest high-tech methods in aerospace transport control," as well as algorithms and gyroscopes per NASA technology, which really seems like it has more useful applications.
For transportation traditionalists, Goldgenie also sells a $250,000 gilt racing bike with a suede saddle and racing tires whose spokes fancifully catch the light as they kick up dust into the faces of competitors who are less wealthy and therefore worse than you.
Goldgenie also offers the world's ugliest e-shisha, which is a pretentious word for a vape pen. At about $1,700, it's sure to inspire an even longer-lasting sentiment of disdain from anyone who sees you using it:
Silver Ice Bucket: $29,330
Silver kitchenware often fetches high prices, but there's a point where cost outweighs practicality. That point is the Novocento Ice Bucket:
It's a "sophisticated accent in any serveware collection," inspired by the Art Deco movement, because we all deserve some art history in our bar carts.
For downright peasants who only command eight-figure net worths, the same site offers a significantly cheaper and significantly uglier version from Franco Lapini:
At the low, low price of only $13,000 and change, this "playful" bucket that is merely silver-plated doubles as a wine holder, but it could theoretically store any object of the appropriate dimensions if you want said object to become cursed. It "doesn't require any maintenance," unlike those pesky four-figure ice buckets, and serves as the perfect ironic gift for new-money tech millionaires.
Gold Cock Ring: $125,000
Velv'Or sell the world's finest, most expensive, and most exclusive accessories for your dong. Not sure what to get that special someone? How about this bespoke $125,000 King JCobra solid gold cock ring?
If you've ever wished your trouser snake could be strangled by an actual snake, this is the item for you and your extremely specific fetish. All you have to do is plop down the price of a modest suburban home. One cock ring to rule them all, this piece of high art was born from an award-winning silversmith, who pours 100 hours of his heart and soul into each wang wrangle.
Individually crafted custom add-ons (such as engravings or gemstone) are also available, because you don't want to have the same gold snake cock ring as everyone else at that secret Illuminati orgy. How embarrassing.
Louis Vuitton Playground Equipment: $650+
Louis Vuitton is apparently trying to toughen up its public image, because proprietary patterns aren't just for women. You can now get those famous shapes on an overwhelmingly masculine $650 jump rope:
Whipping out one of these bad boys is the best way to inspire envy at the gym -- aside from, you know, looking good or performing well. For those who can't be bothered with menial activities like jumping, LV offers something for the less athletic sportsman: a $2,210 portable table tennis set with regulation LV-monogrammed balls.
Vape Rigs: $100,000
You know what's not edgy enough? Vape culture. But that's a problem of the past, thanks to the $100,000 Double Barrel Diamond:
The top-of-the-line Diamond edition shines with the brilliance of 151 grams of solid white gold and 3,000 pave-laid diamonds, and the manly shotgun design is no gimmick. Its "two intelligent barrels" allow for the simultaneous inhalation of two different oils, if that's something you want to do. Is that something that vapists like to do? Best are the magnetic knuckle rings, which let people know that you're willing to punch them with the monetary equivalent of a Ferrari.
Silver Postcard: $985
British luxury maker Asprey has been peddling "articles of exclusive design and high quality" to discerning schmucks since 1781, and over the centuries, they've learned that people will gladly pay more money for less effort. For proof, just look to the $985 sterling silver postcard:
It features no image or golden engraving of Mother England subjugating island natives, and it isn't even lined with endangered red fox vellum. It's literally just a blank postcard. But it does include a postmark, so when you think about it, you're saving money.
Asprey also offers the world's haughtiest ruler, because the type of person who needs metal postcards is probably also pretty obsessive about their lines.
The sterling silver Britannia Ruler lists every monarch to date, constantly reminding you of Britain's imperial glory, in case the $2,300 you just gave them didn't get the job done.
Wallet Chains: $3,219+
Do you remember how sweet wallet chains used to be? No? Luxury label M. Cohen sure as hell hopes you do, because they intend to prove that fashion, like history, is both cyclical and monstrous.
The M. Cohen wallet chain that hearkens back to a time when the members of Limp Bizkit could afford it costs $3,520, thanks to its "raw and precious elements," which better have been extracted from meteors. Competition is the heart of capitalism, so fortunately, Mastermind World also makes a high-end wallet chain for $3,129. This is arguably a better deal because it's cheaper and packs in way more douche-per-cubic-centimeter, thanks to its skull-shaped links:
Porsche Slot Car And Track: $125,000
Slot cars are due for a roaring comeback, if Hammacher Schlemmer's confidence in their new $125,000 slot car track is anything to go by.
Of course it comes nestled within a full-sized replica Porsche, modeled and liveried as per Steve McQueen's ride from the 1971 movie Le Mans:
Under the Porsche shell is a 1:32-scale replica of the Le Mans Raceway, "resplendent in its handcrafted detail." The track features realistic landscaping, hand-detailed aluminum guardrails, weathered poles, working streetlights that illuminate period-specific signage, and 12 slot cars designed after the leading Ferraris, Porches, and Lolas of the early '70s. The whole thing sits on real race-worn prototype tires, and it's equipped with functional headlights and taillights, making it damn-near street legal for the army of tiny slaves you keep in that one cupboard.
Wilson Audio's $685,000 Master Chronosonic speaker system is designed so that any visitor to your home immediately recognizes your great wealth and awful taste:
For that price, you receive not just a pair of speakers, but "the most time-domain correct loudspeaker in Wilson's history," which "plumbs new depths in terms of technology and execution." It utilizes perfect geometries and arcane magicks to offer an "intellectually and emotionally convincing verisimilitude of live music." And because you're a VIP with no time to waste, it delivers that experience to your ear holes in just five microseconds. They're not as dinky as that picture up there may appear, either. Those suckers are seven feet tall.
They don't blow your chardonnay into your hand, though, so honestly, what's the point?
German company Lieb Manufaktur makes opulent versions of historically peasant-approved games like chess, backgammon, and dominoes. Their spin on that last one, made in collaboration with steel crafters VERIDOR, is the world's most expensive set:
The set, which costs 147,000 euros, or nearly $170,000, is the response to a question that Lieb Manufaktur magnanimously asked of themselves: "How can we combine game enjoyment with everlasting value and mind-blowing beauty?" Or to put it a bit differently: "Just how much can we swindle these jabronis for something they'd find in their grandpa's nursing home?"
The answer, which probably arrived in a coke-and-champagne-fueled fever dream, is mindless extravagance. The dominoes are hewn from more than five pounds of 18-karat gold, studded with 168 diamonds, and presented in a marble case of "prime selection."
The set is allegedly a "valuable investment for the future" -- presumably a bleak dystopian one in which dominoes forged from inferior materials have long ago withered to dust. "All hail Mighty King Domino," the godless desert nomads will salute.
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