Selling and Buying Pre-Loved Bags

One of the common questions I get asked is how someone could sell their pre-loved bags.  Many of us bag lovers find that our fickle taste leaves us with bags that we use a few times and then sits in our closet.  Now if the bag isn’t valuable, most of use will donate or give them away, but what to do if the bag cost us a pretty penny?  Here are a few options.

Consignment stores are an easy way to sell your pre-loved bags and other clothing items.  Most consignment stores will take a 50% cut from the sale of the item for doing most of the work to sell your items.  This isn’t always the best method if you have a specific price in mind that you want for your bag.  Say you have a high-end bag that you bought for $1500 and you have barely used this bag, so you want to sell it.  You think that you would like to get $800 for the bag, but if you take it to a consignment store, they would have to sell the bag for $1600 for you to get the $800.  Not really a great deal.  So what are your other options?

eBay has been a popular site for selling and buying pre-loved bags.  But over the past few years, I have heard too many horror stories about sales gone wrong.  There are also so many fakes on eBay being sold as real, and this has really hurt those selling authentic designer bags.  I have used eBay in the past with no problems and I probably still would if I didn’t know about the new options available.  Always check the seller’s or buyer’s reviews before you complete a transaction with them.  This isn’t a foolproof way of making sure you won’t get ripped off, but at least you have a good idea if they have a good reputation.  If the bag is worth over $100, I always recommend insurance and tracking of the package.  Also, always use PayPal because payment through them will  give you some recourse if something does go wrong.  Not always to your favor, but at least it’s something.

Bonanza is a newer site that allows the seller to set a price or accept a best offer.  This site has become a favorite of bag sellers since it is easy to use, the fees are better for the seller, you can have multiple items listed with no expiration dates, and you can transfer items and reviews from eBay.  Fakes are also a plenty on Bonanza, so use caution.  Always check reviews and use PayPal.

Copious is also a new site set up to sell pre-loved items.  This site seems to be popular with fashion bloggers and you can even follow them and see what they are selling from their own collections.  You can also follow friends from Facebook to see what they might be getting rid of from their closets.  This site is a happy blend of handmade items and nice used items.

Threadflip is another site that just launched a month ago and this site seems to be another favorite of fashion bloggers looking to clean out their closets.  I have found that this site has higher end clothing and bags.  They also offer a White Glove Service for those of you wanting to send your items to them to photograph and list for you.  Nice!

There are so many options out there on how you want to sell or buy a pre-loved bag, but you still have to watch out for fakes.  These days the fakes are good, really good.  My sister works for a major designer in New York City and she tells me how the fakes are so good now, even the boutiques have a hard time telling the difference.  So how do you know if you are buying an authentic Gucci?  My favorite resource for you purse fanatics is The Purse Forum.  This is a forum that you will have to register to post and ask questions, but it is a wealth of information.  TPF is well-known with purse collectors and there are individual forum threads for all the major high-end as well as contemporary designers.  Within each of the brand forums, there are “Authenticate This” threads where people looking to buy a purse on eBay or one of these other sites can post the questioned item they are interested in and these amazing women help tell you if they think it is authentic or a fake.  Now, these women on the forum don’t work for these brands and are in no way experts, but they are knowledgable collectors and are usually right on the money.  Warning!  Do not try to sell your bags on TPF or promote your sale on any of the threads.  This will get you banned from TPF and they are serious about this rule.

I hope that this has been helpful for those of you looking to clean out your closet, or add to your collection.  Please let me know if you have any other questions about these options.  I have obsessed about bags for years, so at least through my store and this blog, I can be a resource for you ladies.  Have a great week!

FRYE Dara Campus Stitch Sandal

I really need to do a bag post eventually.  I guess I’m surrounded by purses on a daily basis, so my shoe obsession needs an outlet.  These FRYE sandals came to the market Spring of  2010 and I knew I had to have the teal version.  I’m a sucker for anything turquoise or teal.  I loved how the leather wrapped your foot, so that even with the high heel and platform, it seemed pretty stable. I’ve worn these sandals for two summers now and I’m glad they are in my closet since they go so well with oranges that are the color of the summer.

I am wearing BDG Twill Grazer Mid Rise from Urban Outfitters, Liefsdottir blouse from a few years ago, and a necklace from Koo De Ker.  Here are close ups of these lovely shoes.

Have a great week everyone!  And I promise a purse post next.

Show your local love

I was planning on another topic for this week’s post, but several conversations I’ve had this week and an article in Sunday’s Salt Lake Tribune helped to change my mind. I’m hoping to get you think a little more about where you chose to shop in the future.

I am a proud small business owner. Many people thought I was crazy to open up a high end boutique in the middle of an economic recession. My gut told me that there were many other women out there like me, who wanted to spend their money on something unique and not just another purse you saw everyone else wearing. It’s too soon to know if my gut was right, but I know that I have struck a chord with many people who have already discovered my store.

Many small business owners are struggling right now. We can’t compete with the big box stores and online retailers for prices, but we provide personal service that those places can’t. We have survived many new fancy mall openings and new chain stores coming to SLC. Our goal is not just to make money, but we hope to become an important contributor to our communities. Many of us donate to local schools and charities. Most of us are active in our church and schools. Many small business owners don’t even pay themselves, in the efforts to make sure the business survives. I don’t remember bank CEOs forgoing pay when we were bailing banks out with taxpayer’s millions.

We need your help. As this Mother’s Day comes up and you are thinking about what to get your loved ones, think about where you will be spending your money. More of your dollar spent at a local business goes back to your community than the same dollar spent at a national chain store. When going to the fancy malls, visit the local shops surrounding the malls and not just the stores in the malls. We don’t have million dollar advertising agencies helping to spread the word about our shops, but we do have our loyal customers telling their friends about us.

So go out there and shop, but shop with a purpose. To show your local small businesses that you are glad they are here and that you value what they bring to Salt Lake City. We are not a city that will be defined by the chain stores, we will be defined by the thousands of mom and pop shops that know you by name and love this city in ways those national chains never could.

Make Up Obsession

I don’t wear much make up.  Most days it’s just a lip gloss or stain.  I don’t like sticky glosses or the waxy smell of most lipsticks, so I stick to stains for some color.  Really great cheap options are the ones from Revlon or Cover Girl.  But since last summer, I’ve been obsessed with finding a bright orange color for my lips.  I wear bright red during the fall and winter, but wanted something different for the warmer months.  I wasn’t thrilled with the orange options out there till this year.  Maybe Tangerine Tango being the Pantone color of the year had something to do with it?  Here are my current make up obsessions.

Lets start with the Urban Decay Super Saturated High Gloss Lip Color – this pencil shaped lip color is very highly pigmented, so you get a rich color, which is sometimes hard to find.  I was so excited to find this, since it didn’t have the waxy fragrance that most lipsticks have.  Also, I find that this is a great base for the next obsession.

The Yves Saint Laurent Rouge Pur Couture Glossy Stain.  This is an amazing gloss/stain that came out late last year.  I am not a fan of super sticky glosses, but I was looking for something that would add color without too much shine.  This was the best find of the year!  I was too excited to see that they had a bright orange in their color selection.  I really love how the gloss will wear off slowly, but the color stains your lips, so you still have some color after the gloss is gone.  My only complaint is the price -$32, ouch.  At least I was able to use my Sephora discount for this tube, but my heart is now set on another color.  Sigh.  Another bothersome trait is the scent.  It is not waxy like other lip products, but perfumy.  It was initially very annoying, but I found that it does fade after some time.  I think I can live with it since the product is so unique in the results it gives.

Lastly, I have included my favorite scent, other than the LUSH ones that I previously blogged about.  This is a perfume oil called Nudite Intense.  I’m not a perfume wearer.  HATE strong scents that most people love.  I like light, almost not there scents.  This one is soft and just smells clean without being too soapy or floral.  I got mine at Nordstrom a few years ago, but found that they don’t carry it anymore.

What are your current make up obsessions?  I love finding out about new products.  Oh, and I would have posted pictures of me wearing these lovely lip colors, but the close ups of my zits were not cute.

Outfit Of The Day

Today I felt like a some vintage.  This great red gingham button down was found at an estate sale a few years ago for $1.  Super cute and I love the simple slim cut of the shirt.  My belt is also vintage, from my dad.  Yes, my dad actually wore this belt as a young man.  Now you know where I get my genes from.  Necklace is Marni for H&M.  Jeans are Lucky.  Loafers are Rebecca Minkoff.  Hello Kitty ring for fun.  Have a great day!

Style Crush Isabel Marant

I am not an authority on fashion, but I love fashion in a very unhealthy way.  My sister, who works in the fashion industry, is amazed at my wealth of knowledge and tracking of trends.  I think my daughters have caught the bug too, as my youngest loves my Lucky magazines.

One of my favorite designers that I will never be able to afford is Isabel Marant.  She epitomizes Parisian cool in a way no other designer does.  Off duty models and actresses are often seen wearing her amazing items.Image

That’s Isabel Marant on the left with one of the models from her Spring 2012 runway show.  Her belief is that women want to look great without looking like they are wearing “outfits”.  Any of her pieces can easily be integrated into most wardrobes.  I’m especially fond of her jeans and jackets.  But honestly, I would wear anything she wanted to design.  My closet is calling out for some Isabel Marant (specifically the jacket below), but my wallet won’t allow it.

These images are from her Spring and Fall 2012 lines.  And if you are now officially obsessed as I am, you can follow an amazing blog called the marant philes.  Have a great weekend!

Pictures MIA

Pictures MIA

Sorry about the photos going missing. Beginner blogger fail. Here’s a sneak peak at one of the amazing styles we will have for the House of Harlow Trunk Show tomorrow from 6-8pm at Purse Dreams.

House of Harlow Trunk Show

I am proud to carry Nicole Richie’s line of sunglasses at Purse Dreams. I think that she does a great job of designing styles that compliment a variety of faces. What I love the most, is that some of her styles fit small faces very well. I guess she would know since she is hardly ever seen without sunnies. I’ve wanted to showcase her line since my store opened and I worked with my rep this year to bring Salt Lake City it’s first House of Harlow Trunk Show on April 12 from 6-8pm. Here is a sneak peak of some of the styles you will see that evening.

The Nicole is named after herself, since this oversized round style is often seen on her. The metal accents on the rim adds just a touch of bling to a mostly classic style. I think that the Nicole is one of the most versatile styles. I have sold these sunglasses to different women and they look fab on everyone.

The Carmen is another classic shape with a modern twist. I think that this is another style that trancends trends.

This one is my favorite styles from the House of Harlow line. It’s called the Chelsea. I love the exagerated cat eye silouette and the best part is that this oversized style actually works well with small faces. Here’s another photo of the same style in a different print.

In addition to all these lovely sunglasses, we will also have a few of her handbags in store for the first time. Known for her structured clutches and slouchy hobos, there will be something for everyone. Take a look.

So mark your calendars now for the this event. Here’s the event page on Facebook to RSVP. We will have some light snacks, drinks and a special store discount that night only!