Hello Ladies and maybe some gentleman too ;)
In the past couple of years, I'm sure we've all noticed a huge trend of luxury accessories and apparel, regardless of the age and income of a Fashionista. And of course, we all want to have luxury pieces, thanx to influencers and marketing teams for making them so desirable- as if we didn't know how to spend all our money before? *haha
I have never really been a trend follower, however, I have been a fan of a few luxury brands like YSL, Chanel, Balenciaga... And of course, I have always wanted to own some of those masterpieces myself, but clearly, at the age of 16-21 none of us really have that kind of money to spend... a purse for $3000 seems a bit much, no?
At first, I tried to save money, from my monthly allowance, but as we all know it takes you ages to save that kind of sum. And by the time you do, it's not even in stock anymore... So, all I could do is buy something small like a cardholder or a small piece of jewelry, which was still not what I wanted... so I started surfing the internet and looking for options to buy designer on a budget. Living in London gave me a push to start going into luxury vintage stores...
A couple of years ago, I couldn't even think of purchasing something that's been worn by somebody else. BUEH!!!! I felt itchy just by thinking about it. Made my whole body shiver, still does actually...
It was a rare case for me to even borrow clothes from my girlfriends since all of them have always been more model-looking and I was always "bigger". It was always me giving out clothes and I still do. In order for me to borrow someone's clothes, it has to be a statement piece, a beautiful colour that I love or men's clothes ( i looooove menswear).
First time I saw people buying second hand and vintage clothing were when I moved to London. In Moscow, if anyone was buying second-hand, it was never really in the open, up until now. Moscow is pretty judgemental regarding the way you look. Buying second hand, taking credits and having credit history was never something people wanted others to know about, unlike the EU or US. It is changing now though...
Looking presentable is always a thing- we have a saying: "People meet you by your clothes, but say goodbye based on your mind". Appearance is important so that you get a chance to prove that not only you pretty but you got a brain too... So, if you ever in Moscow don't mind people checking you out, they don't do it in a mean way (most of them, anyway) - it's a cultural thing...
By telling you this, I hope you guys get a better understanding of what "vintage" meant for me and how I perceived it. And "Fake it till you make it" is not necessarily an option... Buying Designer is something that pretty much every girl wants, especially after watching Sex and The City. But it gets pretty pricey, not all of us have millions of $$$ to spend as we have other expenses to cover like: rent, food, travel, manicure, hair (you know what I'm saying)? We all want to save up and find the cheapest way to look chic and not look cheap. I found a few ways to keep on buying designer cheaper and yet being able to eat afterward and I am gonna share those with you!!!!
Outlet is your best friend! There are always great collections and sales. So if you travel to EU often or live there - make sure you google Outlet Village. I know for sure there are great outlets in London, Florence, Paris, and Dubai. Nordstrom Rack is great, Off 5th, I know there is a few outlet villages nearby LA. Outlets are great to shop designer or mid-range brands with great sale up to 80%. I will tell you in advance, that outlets can be very unpredictable - sometimes it would be filled with amazing clothes and sometimes it would be empty... But definitely worth the travel and especially be aware when sale season is on- they sell everything even cheaper.
OUTNET.com one of my ultimate destinations, when buying designer clothes and I want to avoid buying vintage. Awesome sales - with a big variety of designers, 350 different brands and prices with up to 80% sale. They also have options- high-end designer, affordable luxury and very affordable brands all on sales.
I mean there are plenty of Apps that sell designer on sale, which you are more than welcome to check out and find the one you like best, but Outnet is definitely one of my favorite and their customer service is great as well as delivery time.
I mean there are plenty of Apps that sell designer on sale, which you are more than welcome to check out and find the one you like best, but Outnet is definitely one of my favorites and their customer service is great as well as delivery time.
Always check the Sale section in any online store. If you want exclusive pieces on sale - check out Farfetch , Matchesfashion, MyTheresa, FWRD, Moda Operandi and of course Net-a-Porter... I love their sales and sometimes their prices go reaaally low and you can find cool designer pieces cheap.
Before you say, "Oh hell no!", let me explain to you how it actually works. Vintage doesn't necessarily mean that it's been worn. Very often I buy completely new bags and shoes and clothes, still with tags and super cheap. Also, Vintage allows me to find rare jewelry pieces, which have not been produced for many years and people sell them for a very good price, for example, gold CHANEL necklaces. Buying Vintage is also sustainable and it's a huge trend having exclusive vintage pieces, something that you can't find in stores anymore.
When I'm in Paris or London I love shopping in vintage stores, you can always find amazing pieces in outerwear and accessories. I am still not there yet with clothes... Most of the pieces that are in the vintage shops have been worn, but some of them can be absolutely new and people just never wore them.
I mean how many times did you buy a beautiful piece and it is still hanging in your closet with a tag?
With a bit more convenience, there are luxury vintage online shops that I am actually using all the time. For example, you want to buy a watch - like Rolex, Cartier, Tag Heuer (obviously we are not going to E-BAY! As its most likely will be a scam!!!! ) With the majority of vintage online shops, pieces actually go through verification and prising.( do check on the website info if this is the service they provide, there is a lot of fakes nowadays.)
P.S. Make sure you pay attention to the description of the product and its condition. If you aren't sure about the condition, I'd rather suggest you don't buy the piece and find an alternative.
So here is a few of my top favorite online Vintage shops :
*FYI, I love buying from there as they verify their piece in originality + they give you an honest description of the condition. Something E-Bay still needs to work on...
This is one of my most favorite apps to buy vintage! All the items they have are in great condition, also FASHIONPHILE offers the largest selection of pre-owned vintage, rare, and limited edition handbags from luxury designers. This is Y I love it.
1. First of all, this is the only website I know of that offers you to buy out your desired piece in 60 days
2. Second of all, you can sell back your purchase with 70% of the item's purchase price within 180 days of purchase.
3. All of the items listed are in great conditions
4. Also, you can sell your own items there, with a prior fair estimate from the team.
So far it is my most favorite online vintage store. I always find really good deals on it. Plus sales are great and delivery (US and EU) is pretty fast and their customer service is great. So far I got my beautiful Balenciaga in Pistachio green colour, which was stopped being produced 3-4 years ago, and it was like new - I got it for $600 instead of $2,5k. Also, I got my beautiful Tag Heuer watch for $540 and it was like new. All I did - simply adjusted the size which cost me $15.
The Real Real is probably one of the most popular ones, It has slightly higher prices, but sometimes you can find more rare pieces there. Like my Valentino Camo Glam lock bag. The original cost of it was $2,275.00 USD and I got a completely new bag, still with a tag on it for $795.
Both shops have different options and pieces. So, I always check both.. sometimes one has a better deal than the other. They also have a physical store, if you love the shopping experience and love to touch and feel and try on before you purchase, on Melrose Avenue
It is a New York-based store that specialises in luxury vintage. They have a couple of stores around NYC, one in Beverly Hills and one in Miami for those of you who are still not into online shopping. Their prices are sometimes higher than in the other two, but they also offer you more exclusive pieces and mostly in much better conditions.
I hope you will find it useful and you won't have to "Fake it till you Make it" anymore. The Market is so huge, that I am sure you will be able to find something that you love for your budget :)