In all honesty, I can not pinpoint the time in my life when I decided I would like to purchase luxury goods. I’ve always loved handbags and accessories, but for most of my life have relied on the high street.
I studied graphic design at University and in 2013 I landed a design job at Cosmopolitan magazine. It was an ultimate dream come true; I couldn’t quite believe it had happened to me. As a result of working on one of the biggest magazines in the country, I was thrown into this whole new world of fashion I knew nothing about. Some of the girls I worked with made so much effort and were impeccably dressed, like they themselves had stepped out of the pages of the magazine.
This must have been where it began. I was 24, a quiet Northern lass living in London, sitting there in my jeans and tshirt, listening to the office girls planning to purchase their next Mulberry handbag or Christian Louboutin heels.
Because of my job, I began watching a lot more Youtube and following the first ‘influencers’ (as they are now known) on Instagram. They were just starting to be featured in magazines and talked about on social media for the first time. I was taking a keen interest in what people were wearing, buying and recommending. The dangerous path of suggested videos on Youtube led me gradually from high street hauls to luxury reviews.
Louis Vuitton seemed to be the designer brand that most people talked about – it didn’t seem too out of reach either. Young girls like me were reviewing their collections of LV; talking about the quality of the leather, the durability, the classic and timeless nature of the monogram print. I come to realise most of these purchases were made pre-loved (aka second hand).
I used to think of second hand as well-used, old, vintage items that probably smelled a bit and nobody wanted anymore. In the handbag world, the term pre-loved often describes pretty much brand new items that have been used once or twice. You can make amazing savings if you know where to look!
I wasn’t brave enough to buy a bag as my first foray into designer goods. I wanted something small but useful and after hours and hours of research I decided I would really love a designer organiser for my 27th birthday. I’ve always been someone that prefers writing things down as opposed to putting a note in my phone. I enjoy making lists and I’m obsessed with all things stationary. I knew I would get the use out of it.
The Louis Vuitton agendas come in three different sizes: PM, MM and GM. The MM is the in-between size and is comparable to your standard Filofax. I decided this was the best fit for me and went on the hunt on the pre-loved market.
I came across a reputable seller that advertised Louis Vuitton items on Facebook, eBay and Depop. There are some very good groups on Facebook filled with very knowledgeable women. I was extremely nervous about purchasing my first designer item, online, from someone I don’t know. They all assured me she was legit and advised I use a third-party authenticator to make sure the item was real.
So that’s what I did. My first experience purchasing pre-loved was a very positive one, although I have had some bad ones too (which I may talk about in another post). I couldn’t wait for it to arrive before purchasing inserts, cover pages, stickers etc. I went to Etsy for most of these.
I have also had my agenda monogrammed with my initials, which is a free service in some Louis Vuitton stores. Adding all these little bits of personalisation makes the item really special. I know it’s something I will continue to use for many years to come.
And, perhaps unfortunately, this is where the obsession started.