Meanwhile, TPF membership jumps 1000 % and purse addict support groups pop up outside malls everywhere:shame: The bags have it at Chanel show in Paris By JOELLE DIDERICH, Associated Press WriterFri Mar 2, 2:15 PM ET At the Chanel ready-to-wear show Friday, you couldn't toss a snowball without hitting one of the oversized patent leather handbags made popular by Kate Moss. In a blatant manifestation of the handbag-mania that has gripped the fashion industry, editors normally averse to sharing the same shade of lipstick stood in clusters around a blinding white fake snow set, clutching identical Chanel totes. Ask any fashion follower which handbag she covets, and she will reel off names like Lariat, Paddington, Birkin, Spy and Stam. To the uninitiated, these are the star products from Balenciaga, Chloe, Hermes, Fendi and Marc Jacobs, respectively. "A woman doesn't have just one handbag anymore, she has a wardrobe of handbags according to her various needs," said Ken Downing, senior vice president and fashion director at Neiman Marcus. German designer Karl Lagerfeld offered plenty of new options with his autumn-winter collection of windowpane check tweeds in bright Lego-like shades. Standouts included a tiny silver coin purse dripping with chains, a cream crocodile clutch that opened like a book and a navy fabric tote dotted with enamel pins. Unlike expensive designer outfits, handbags are a quick and relatively affordable way for women to update their wardrobes each season. The fact that one size fits all doesn't hurt, either. Those from Chanel are among the most coveted, from the classic quilted purse with gold chain straps to the sporty Ligne Cambon. "Chanel continues just to be a very sought-after handbag for women of all ages and of all styles. The Chanel handbag is the perfect accessory with everything," Downing said. And where the ultimate accessory is concerned, price is no object. A Chanel handbag in exotic crocodile or lizard skin will set you back up to $26,000, but that pales in comparison with the diamond-encrusted Birkin at Hermes, which goes for $105,000-$211,000 depending on the client's specifications. Though that top tier is reserved for stars like Helen Mirren, who carried a $250,000 diamond-bedecked Lana Marks clutch to collect her best actress Oscar on Sunday, the average price of a designer bag has also jumped in the last three years to reflect booming demand. "We are probably at the origin of this rise," Chanel's president of fashion, Bruno Pavlovsky, told The Associated Press. "We are working with lots of different materials, very sophisticated materials which have prompted us to adjust the price of the bags toward a higher average level," he explained. The company is ramping up the luxury level partly as a bid to foil the counterfeiters who produce millions of second-rate copies of its goods. It churns out six collections per year, making sure new products hit stores every two months. "Counterfeiting is really detrimental to our image because inevitably, the quality of the products is not the same as ours," said Pavlovsky.