Do you long for a sleek Coach purse? Or how about a brightly colored Louis Vuitton tote? Designer handbags can be a fantastic purchase, but the prices they demand are steep. In fact, never before have prices been so high for designer purses and totes.
What is an aspiring fashionista to do? She should start exploring her local consignment shops for gently used designer handbags. Consignment boutiques carry a vast array of the latest, gently used designer handbags. Scan your Yellow Pages and visit a few consignment shops to get an idea of what is available in your area. Some consignment shops specialize in vintage designer bags from the likes of Chanel, and Dooney and Bourke. Others carry only the latest fashions in designer handbags.
What to Look For in a Designer Handbag
When purchasing a designer handbag, examine it closely to ensure you are getting a good deal. Make sure the bag is authentic and doesn't reveal any flaws. The leather should be firm and even-colored. It should not show signs of fading or cracking. Zippers should close without pulling and straps should be firmly affixed the the body of the purse. In order to ascertain that your designer purse is indeed authentic, look for the following tell-tale signs of a counterfeit product:
- Logos should be firmly affixed.
- Top stitching should be tight and straight.
- Leather should be firm and without discoloration or fading.
- The country-of-origin tag should not say Taiwan or China.
Repairing Minor Flaws in a Designer Handbag
So you've found the perfect, gently-used designer handbag, but it has a few flaws. It may require a few minor repairs or a bit of cleaning. Don't shy away from a great deal because of minor flaws. Instead consider the following quick fixes:
Ink stains can be removed from lightly colored purses with a dab of hydrogen peroxide. Be careful with using hydrogen peroxide with colored purses; the peroxide can discolor them.
- Holes in leather items can be repaired with patches. Just even out the surfaces of the hole and trace it on a piece of paper. Use that piece of paper as the pattern for the patch. Cut out the patch and insert it carefully into the hole, using garment glue to hold it securely.
- Snags on a leather purse can be repaired using clear nail polish. Do not use clear nail polish on suede items, however.
- Leather conditioner can be used to remove scratches and scuffs on leather bags. If the leather polish fails to remove the scratch, use show polish to remove any remaining imperfections.
- Repairing minor flaws like broken straps can be done at your local leather repair shop. Broken zippers can likewise be repaired by a shop that specializes in leather goods and clothes.
Selling Your Designer Handbags on Consignment
Your local consignment shop can also be a great place to drop off those designer handbags you no longer need, allowing you to free up space in your closet for future purchases. Most consignment boutiques will either pay you directly or offer to take the item on consignment. When a consignment shop opts to take an item on consignment and the item sells, you will receive a percentage of the sale -- usually somewhere between 30 and 50 percent. If your handbag does not sell after 90 days the shop may offer to donate it to charity. You will then receive a receipt for tax purposes.
Consigning Designer Handbags Online
If you decide to consign your designer handbags online make sure your photographs accurately represent the handbag. Focus your camera on one handbag at a time and use software like Adobe Photoshop or Roxio PhotoShow to sharpen images and increase contrast. When writing descriptions of your handbags, include as many details as possible. Note details like type of leather, color of topstitching and the design on the handbag's interior fabric. More importantly, be honest about flaws in the handbag. If the leather is scratched or torn, then include a detailed description of the damage in your discussion of the product. Your customers will appreciate your honesty.
Whether you decide to buy only designer handbags on consignment, or you aspire to take your passion a step further by consigning them as well, you'll enjoy a fun and rewarding experience.