Luxury transcends brands, price and monograms. It is much more than that – it is a unique experience, of owning something that’s exotic and exclusive. It can provide a high when you know you possess one of the most sought-after leather in the world. Of course, the definition of luxury would wary across population, but for the purpose of this post we’d consider bags above INR 20,000. What thought do you put in before buying, or investing, in high-end bags? This post puts a few fundamental points into perspective to ensure that you have thought through all the essential parameters and there are no regrets post purchase.
A designer/luxury bag may not have been so relevant perhaps a decade ago, but with the sort of awareness brought on by the social media frenzy, it is hard to ignore the latest arm candies of the glitterati. Yet, there’s no point in simply aping what celebrities are carrying the world over.
1. Start with a purpose. Luxury bags, as do any others, come in a variety of materials and textures. Usually, it is rare leather that pushes up the price, apart from the brand, that is. And not every leather is suited to every purpose. For example, if you intend your bag to withstand everyday wear and tear, Saffiano will be your best bet. Also consider the size you’d require; that is, think of what you need to carry around. The purpose assumes much more importance when it comes to luxury bags; you do not want to spend a fortune and yet be unable to use it the way you wanted.
2. Beware of Fakes. The global handbag industry has long been plagued by the counterfeit menace. It has been hard to put a stop to despite best efforts by brands. Hence, the onus is on the buyer to be aware of and stay away from fakes. Genuine quality also ensures durability and will safeguard your investment for a long time to come. The easiest and the most fool-proof way of doing so is to buy directly from the physical stores of the brands; which brings us to the next point.
3. Avoid buying online. True, this is the age of online shopping but when it comes to buying luxury, it is usually not the best avenue for reasons given below:
a) You surely need to touch and feel the bag before committing to it. A workaround could be to check out the bag physically at the store and then buy online.
b) The latest launches are usually available only at the stores. Only old models are available online. The number of models too are limited.
c) To maintain that exclusivity factor, high end brands seldom resort to e-commerce sites or marketplaces. Hence, you would hardly find a Louis Vuitton online apart from its own website. This is more so in India. On a side note, in India, you could buy Coach, Tory Burch, Michael Kors and other mid-tier brands from Elitify.
4. Basic research will go a long way. Designer bags are usually invested in, not splurged on. Hence, any rules that apply to investing apply here too. Do not simply act on other’s advice. Do some research yourself and understand what it is that you are paying for. You would want to take into account your own sense of style here and in its context zero in on the bag most suited to your taste. For example, for me, comfort almost always precedes style. If you are unsure, it is better to take help from someone having a good fashion sense. In these days of fashion blogging, you’d find plenty of resources online as well. Websites of brands themselves are good places to start off.
It is also advisable to pay attention to the sort of maintenance required by the bag. If you are like me, you’d hate to spend time on regular upkeep of the bag. Of equal importance is the color you choose for the same reason. In short, your bag should match your personality.
Are there other points you keep in mind while out shopping for luxury bags? Do let us know!
Featured Image Photo Courtesy: BVD Design Studio