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SHOPPING : CASH OR CREDIT

Marc, you tricky devil

May 11, 2008|Erin Weinger | Times Staff Writer

Marc JACOBS is quite the prankster. In September, the spirited designer staged his runway show in reverse. Then he designed a Louis Vuitton bag covered in bad jokes. Now, Jacobs is trying to pull a fast one by selling two nearly identical floral rings that come with one big difference -- a whopping $875 price gap.

The oversized poppy design comes in two versions. One is from Jacobs' high-end collection ($907), while the other is from his mass Marc by Marc Jacobs line ($32). Both feature layers of crystal-studded petals in a Monet-like palette of cool blues and soft pinks, though the Marc Jacobs Collection crystals are Swarovski. Each is decorated by a floating circle of nailheads that represents pistils and stamens.

The $907 ring isn't even gold; it's 14 karat gold plated. The budget bauble is tinny silver, but you don't know that until you turn it over. And when the flower is on your hand, you aren't going to see it.

Sure, the Marc Jacobs Collection piece looks a little more polished. But in the end, nobody is going to notice. And your dollars are better spent on gas and groceries.

Marc Jacobs poppy ring, $907 at Marc Jacobs, 8400 Melrose Place, Los Angeles, (323) 653-5100. Marc by Marc Jacobs poppy ring, $32 at Marc by Marc Jacobs, 8410 Melrose Ave., Los Angeles, (323) 653-0100.

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