October 22, 2014

My most exhilarating purchases -- Part One

I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again: I love me a good bargain. 

And of all the fabulous things I have scored on the cheap, there are three that still send shivers down my spine. 

Here are their stories in a three-part series. First up:

My authentic Louis Vuitton Speedy 35
What it retails for: $990
What I paid: $77.77

This beauty was pre-owned, but in the best possible way.

The handbag’s monogrammed fabric had been nicely broken in.

The tan genuine leather handles had aged and developed a beautiful patina (a thin film on the surface of leather that is valued for its aesthetic appearance).

And the interior was clean as a whistle. 

I found this bag on eBay, and it had all the tell-tale signs of what I like to call a “sleeper auction.” 

A “sleeper auction” is when – someway, somehow – a gem of an item manages to fly below the radar of potential buyers. 

No one had yet placed a bid on this bag – despite the fact that less than 24 hours remained on the auction. 

Yes, it was entirely possible that someone had designs to bid on – and eventually win – this bag, just like me. 

But a voice deep inside told me otherwise. 

I was out of town traveling with the Auto Show at the time, and knew I would not have access to a computer that day. 

So with adrenaline pumping through my veins, I bid on the bag before leaving my hotel room. 

I entered the absolute max I was willing to spend: $77.77 -- seven being my favorite number. 

I hoped for the best, but expected the worst. 

When I returned to my hotel at the end of a very long day, I was shocked to learn that I had won the auction. 

And even better? 

I was the only bidder. 

I went on to carry this bag for two years straight, and it even became the inspiration behind my bridal shower cake (see photo top right).

And I rocked it a few weeks ago to the private reception the NFL hosted to celebrate the arrival of the Pro Football Hall of Fame exhibit to The Henry Ford Museum:

Best darn $77.77 I ever spent.

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  1. I'm always weary of buying those items on eBay but maybe I should take another look nice share. :)!

    1. Hi, Mari!

      I should clarify something -- and it actually crossed my mind to include this while I was writing the blog post...

      There are a lot of shysters (sp?) on eBay. Tons. eBay is good about deleting listings containing counterfeit merchandise, but they can't get to them all, so there are a lot of people selling fakes.

      I would NOT recommend that someone buy a designer bag off eBay if they don't already know about that particular brand. I can spot a fake LV a mile away. Why?

      I've got several authentic LVs, four others...and all four were purchased from LV boutiques (Paris and Las Vegas)...so I know that they look like, I know the tell-tale signs of fakes, the direction the monogram goes in, etc.

      These are the things one should know before they take a leap on eBay.

      This particular bag I purchased was from a very reputable seller, known for selling the Real Deal. This bag actually belonged to his late mother's estate.

      Again, learn all there is to know before you buy. Do that, and you'll be fine.


  2. Heheh, you know... if you ever decide to give up the blogging gig, you might have a ready-made niche as a personal shopper to step into! Nice find! (Although I confess, I don't understand the thing behind the designer bags. I am not trying to be snarky... I truly don't get it. Would you explain it, sometime? :) )

    1. Hey, there! That's fine; l no snark "taken"...

      There's nothing to "get", really. People have an affinity for handbags in the same way that people like the Star Wars trilogy,scrap booking, or scuba diving. But, from what I've found, people tend to like handbags for different reasons: Some like anything expensive with a logo -- no matter who made it or what it looks like.

      Me? I simply love well-made, quality European handbags, Louis Vuitton and Hermes, primarily...and even with these designers, I don't fancy *everything* they've ever made. With LV's I like large carry-all totes -- one of which is my diaper bag at the moment -- and with Hermes, I love their satchels. I like the history of the companies, and the craftsmanship. If you like fashion history as it pertains to Hollywood, and you're ever bored, look up the story of why the creator of Hermes named one of their iconic handbags after the actress Jane Birkin...)

      These pieces are like investments. If you treat them well and preserve them, you will have them for a very long time -- and they never go out of style, which also speaks to me because I am not a trend chaser. The very same "Speedy" bag featured in this post was worn by women in the 40s, 50s, and 60s. It's a true classic!

      I have bags my mom has passed on to me...and I will do the same for Kennedy...

      So, that is why *I* like what I like. But I can't speak for everyone else.

      Hope that helps.