Culture

Actress Candice Bergen has a pretty awesome side gig

Portrait of a Marijuana leaf. And the struggle to capture that elusive shade of Weed.

A post shared by Candice 🐪 (@bergenbags) on

In the 1980s and ‘90s, Candice Bergen was a rabble rouser on TV’s “Murphy Brown,” touching off political and social hot buttons across America as a fictional journalist who was a single mom and smoked marijuana after chemotherapy for breast cancer.

What a difference a few decades make.

Bergen, without stirring controversy, posted a picture to her Instagram account of a Louis Vuitton handbag that she’d decorated with a hand-painted cannabis leaf, with the comment: “Portrait of a Marijuana leaf. And the struggle to capture that elusive shade of Weed.”’

Actress Candice Bergen, 2017. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)

Actress Candice Bergen, 2017. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)

As acceptance of cannabis for medical and recreational use spreads across the U.S., Bergen and other celebs are increasingly open about their acceptance of marijuana — or at least showing they’ve got nothing to lose by doing so.

Bergen’s handicraft is apparently a hobby — she hand paints old Louis Vuitton handbags owned by family and friends with designs of her own creation and displays them on her website, Bergen Bags. The name is, ostensibly, a play on her last name and the Birkin bag, made by Hermes.

She explains on the website that her daughter asked her to decorate an old Louis Vuitton duffle, and then posted it on her Instagram account. After it drew positive comments, Bergen was approached by friends who asked them to adorn their own favorite bags.

Bergen wrote: “I set up my paints on the long table on our porch in East Hampton, put golden oldies on the radio and work happily. At the age of 70, it is fun to do something I haven’t done before. I hope you like it.”

Bergen as Murphy Brown, trying medical cannabis for nausea from breast cancer treatment.

Bergen as Murphy Brown, trying medical cannabis for nausea from breast cancer treatment.

Other celebs who are open about cannabis include lifestyle entrepreneur Martha Stewart, who co-hosts “Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party” on VH1 with cannabis-loving rapper Snoop Dogg; comedian Jerry Seinfeld’s wife, Jessica, who has publicly endorsed cannabis products by Lord Jones, a Los Angeles manufacturer; comedian Chelsea Handler, who said on Instagram she is developing a strain of cannabis; and Whoopi Goldberg, whose Whoopi & Maya cannabis balms and soaks could help with a variety of issues experienced by women and seniors.

Bergen reportedly has agreed to participate in a revival of “Murphy Brown” on CBS. Today’s vastly different political and cultural climate should provide a wealth of fodder for new episodes.

One thing that hasn’t seemed to change? Her wry sense of humor. “Tired-ass Honky Ho” is the way her profile reads at @bergenbags on Instagram, where she has 58,700 followers.

San Francisco’s Hero Shop carries Bergen Bags, but does not currently have any with cannabis motifs. Those in stock include two handbags made by Future Glory, a San Francisco handbag maker, and embellished by Candice Bergen:  a small pouch with the letters XOX for $395, and a black tote with a wisteria vine for $795. Clients may also work with Hero Shop to place a special order, and must provide their own bag and design idea to be painted by Candice Bergen for a fee to be determined. All proceeds go charitable organizations. Refunds or credit are not available.