Authenticating your Multi-Stripe (Rainbow Stripe) Bag

The Multi-Stripe collection (mostly known as the "Rainbow Stripe") from 2000 is one of Kate Spade's most popular collections of all time. So, naturally, it's one of the most widely faked. This page should assist you with the authentication of your Multi-Stripe bag. For assistance with other stripes, Click here.

This is the basic Multi-Stripe bag, and the one you'll see most often ~ the "bucket".

The features of this bag are very important. Note that the authentic Rainbow Stripe fabric is smooth cotton with a slight sheen. This particular model has a brown leather tie closure. Not all of the Multi-Stripe bags have a tie closure, but for those that do, it will be brown leather. The Rainbow Stripe bags are made in the US (most of the accessories are made in China). They have brown canvas handles (not black or rainbow) with white stitching.

This is a different version of the same bag. You can see that even with the authentic bags, the placement of the stripes varies widely. This bag has more red on it and therefore appears brighter:

Here's a close-up of the fabric and beige cotton lining. In the corner you can see the black metal YKK zipper on the interior:

It is also important to note that the Rainbow Stripe bag, while available in the Bucket, Lenore, Diaper Bag and Dog Carrier, was NEVER available in a Sam, Claire, or other small purse shape. The dog carrier has webbed nylon handles and both are lined in coated nylon. This is the only way in which they vary from the handbags. The diaper bag and dog carrier have the same fabric/label/country of origin.

Shown here is the Multi-Stripe diaper bag:

Interestingly, while most KS diaper bags have webbed nylon handles no matter what type of handles their handbag counterparts have, the Multi-Stripe diaper bag also has the brown canvas handles!

Here's a photo of the dog carrier. Note that this is the only one with webbed nylon handles.

This is the "Lenore" shape, which is not as deep as the buckets, and has shoulder straps. However, it is larger in size than the buckets.

The Multi-Stripe collection also included some small accessories and wallets. Here's a small pencil case:

Here's the large organizer:

Note that these are made of the same fabric as the handbags.

For you collectors, check out these very rare items made with the Multi-Stripe fabric. Our friend authentic*purses found these; they are one of a kind samples and were NOT mass produced. These are examples of the kind of fun things you can find at Kate Spade's biannual sample sales!


Now let's take a look at some fakes. There are a lot more fake Multi-Stripe bags than there are authentic ones.


This is an interesting specimen. Not only has Kate Spade never made a bag in this shape period, but the handles are black leather (possibly pleather!) and the lining is black.


Here's a copy in the "Pia" shape. The problem is, the Multi-Stripe collection was never available in any of the small traditional purse shapes. There is no authentic Multi-Stripe Pia. Add to that the red gingham lining and the rainbow handle, and you have a classic fake!

No Multi-Stripe (or any other stripe) bag has this bow, which was a characteristic of the 2001 fall Hatteras collection ONLY.

None of the authentic Multi-Stripe bags include clear PLASTIC!

What's wrong here? Rainbow fabric handles and a GIGANTIC label!


Oi! Well, I guess by now I don't have to tell you that the authentic Multi-Stripe does NOT have black leather trim!


This bag has multiple "issues" and needs a session with Dr. Phil. First of all, it has a detachable strap. 99.99999% of Kate Spade bags in general don't have detachable straps, and certainly no authentic Multi-Stripe bags have detachable straps. This thing has black fabric handles rather than brown canvas. It also has black lining. As if all that wasn't bad enough, it's also a rough textured canvas rather than smooth sateen. Next!


This is a counterfeit organizer. No authentic KS organizer has a detachable strap. Also it has kind of odd rounded corners on the sides and on the flap.


Here's a counterfeit wallet. Note that the shape is completely off. The authentic wallets will have squared off corners like the nylon collection wallets. This is also rough canvas and has ugly stitching.


If it has a metal label like this, it's fake!

A point that I can't emphasize to you enough: THE RAINBOW STRIPE COLLECTION DID NOT INCLUDE A SAM! Ergo, anything you see like this:

is fakeorooni.


A REVIEW
For your Multi-Stripe handbag to be authentic, it must have:
-beige cotton lining (unless it's a diaper bag or dog carrier);
-if it has a tie closure, the tie must be brown leather, not fabric
-the handles must be brown canvas with white stitching (unless it's a dog carrier)
-fabric of smooth cotton sateen, not rough textured canvas
-If there is a zipper on the bag, must be a black YKK zipper
-Made in the USA interior tag (unless an accessory - some of the MS accessories were made in China)
-The traditional black fabric kate spade NEW YORK label on the front

It must NOT have:
-Black lining, gingham lining, or any other color lining (unless a diaper bag or dog carrier)
-Leather handles or pleather handles
-Leather or pleather trim
-A metal logo label on the front
-A silver metal zipper on the exterior or interior
-A small handbag shape, such as Sam, Pia or Claire!