My obsession with Chanel started later in life. Of course, growing up, I had always heard of Chanel and knew that the brand was associated with impeccably dressed women, but that was about it. However, when The Devil Wears Prada made it’s way to the silver screen, I remember watching it with my sister. There is one scene where Anne Hathaway wears a Chanel necklace and both my sister and I became obsessed with it. We even went as far as to look up knockoffs online because we just had to have them and we couldn’t afford the real deal (we never bought them because we were too afraid of being scammed!). Little did we know that this would start a new obsession with a designer synonymous with timeless style.
As my style began to shift from buying what’s super trendy (see ya later, 20’s) into more timeless pieces (hello, thirties!), I became obsessed with looking for quality pieces that would not only age well over time but that would be accurately represent my personal sense of style. I have always added a little edge factor to my outfits (a silk skull scarf, lots of black, studded ankle boots, you get the picture), so finding pieces that were both timeless in nature and edgy enough for my personality was difficult. I found that pieces were often too girly or bland. Yet one brand always stood the test of time, no matter what style aesthetic I was feeling in that moment. Every woman understands the allure of Chanel. The timeless designs, the incredible attention to detail, and the high quality materials speak to every style. Whether you’re all about the streetstyle feel (guilty!) or you prefer a refined lady like look, Chanel has pieces for everyone. It’s amazing, actually. To think that one designer has the power to speak to everyone regardless of age and style, is pretty inspiring.
About a year into blogging, I embarked on my personal journey to find the perfect Chanel bag. I’m not going to lie, I was equal parts terrified and excited. I knew that I was looking for a preloved black Chanel mini flap bag (so classic, right?) and that I was scared to buy online. I had heard horror stories from countless friends that had been scammed on luxury items online. From authentication issues to misrepresented photos, I was worried that those dollars that I had saved for quite some time would be wasted on a fake Chanel bag without even knowing it.
Through loads of research, I stumbled upon Portero Luxury. Unbeknownst to me, Portero Luxuryhad quietly earned a reputation for selling preloved luxury items with award winning customer service. They were even written up in the Wall Street Journal as a trusted luxury seller, which is nothing to laugh at. Even after I had read about all of Portero Luxury’s praise, I was still nervous to pull the “purchase” trigger. Luckily, Portero Luxury has the most amazing customer service team. They took the time to answer all of my questions and made me feel important, even though I wasn’t buying their most expensive item. As a first time Chanel buyer, this meant the world to me.
When looking to purchase a preloved luxury bag, My experience taught me a few things that I would like to share with you:
1.) DO YOU RESEARCH (and then research some more): I cannot stress this enough. RESEARCH, RESEARCH, RESEARCH before you buy. When I say research, what I really mean is find the bag that speaks to YOU. Don’t just splurge on a bag that is the “it” bag of the moment just because it’s trendy. Sure, I love trendy bags, too, but when are talking about luxury items like Chanel (aka purses that will never go out of style), find the style that best suits YOU. Before I splurged on my first Chanel bag (a mini flap bag featured above), I had so many tabs open on my laptop because I wasn’t sure what size I wanted. I would literally click back and forth between tabs comparing sizes until my eyes were bleary, but I knew that I wanted to make sure I was making the right decision. After awhile (I’m talking months), I decided that I wanted a mini bag to start my collection with since I felt like it spoke to my personality. As a self-proclaimed lover of purses, I have grown to realize that my favorite purse size is “mini” and I am totally owning it. Once you find the bag you want, this is where the real research begins. I started educating myself on how to spot to a fake luxury item, the materials used, and generally just teaching myself about Chanel as a brand. I learned so much throughout this process that I highly recommend doing this type of research before you buy.
2.) DO NOT SETTLE:This is the hardest piece of advice for anyone to hear, even for myself. Just because a bag is “there,” doesn’t mean you should buy it. Let me elaborate. When you’re done with all your research and you find THE bag you want, it’s going to be really hard for you to not just want to buy the first bag that somewhat resembles what you want (i.e. same size, different color). This is especially hard for me because once my mind is made up, I JUST WANT IT ALREADY! I’m talking instant gratification, people. When you are set on buying on a site like Portero Luxury, you sometimes have to be patient for your perfect bag to appear. This could take awhile, but you guys, it’s worth it. Plus, Portero Luxury has an amazing way to help you with this. Keep reading…
3.) UTILIZE THE CUSTOMER SERVICE:Portero’s customer service is incredible. Beyond their sweet and knowledgeable staff, Portero will try their hardest to find you exactly what you want. Yep, you read that right. Even without buying anything, they will help you try to find your perfect dream bag. This is such an amazing thing to offer your clientele, especially since you might need some help tracking down what you want.
4.) DRAW OUT THE SIZE OF YOUR BAG BEFORE YOU BUY: You probably think that this sounds crazy, but hear me out. I am a visual person. I need to see things visually in order to imagine using them. When I was working with Portero Luxuryto find my dream NYFW Chanel, I actually looked at the measurements that the listed on their website and DREW it out (with a ruler!) on a blank piece of white paper. Once I drew it out, I felt like I could finally see how it would look on my body. Yes, I took selfies of myself and my Chanel purse drawing and it actually really helped me visualize the shape and dimension of the particular bag I was considering!
5.) THINK ABOUT THE LONGEVITY OF THE PIECE YOU WANT:This is very important. When thinking about a luxury purse, you need to think about it in terms of longevity. Will this piece stand the test of time? Will you actually wear it? Will it go with the rest of your wardrobe? If the answer to any of these questions is “no,” it’s probably not the bag for you. When it comes to Chanel, I tend to think classic, especially since Chanel is expensive (this doesn’t come as a surprise to anyone, right?). When I was working with Portero Luxury to find my NYFW purse, this sequin number featured above really stood out to me. I wanted a classic shape with a fun exterior so that I could add a statement bag to my collection. I really feel like this bag spoke to me. Not only are the sequins very unique, but the fact that it’s also made by one of the most timeless designers made this piece a slam dunk to me and you know what? It was PERFECT for NYFW. I can’t even begin to tell you how many compliments I received when I wore it!
…and there you have it. My own two cents about buying preloved luxury items. I highly recommend checking out Portero’s Luxury designer pieces because I honestly think they have the best collection around. Oh, and since Portero Luxury is SO amazing, you can use the code WANNABEFASHION code for $50 off $750 and up, with free domestic ground shipping on all orders over $1000! SCORE!
I was also interviewed by Portero Luxury’s team. Check it out here:
Amazing tips for buying pre-loved! Here at Portero, we LOVE you!