Chanel Boy Bag Discoloration-1

There are so many things I love about handbags, but on the flip side, there are some aspects of bags that drive me nuts. I’m sure I’m not alone in some of these issues, and that’s why we’re bringing you a new series, Purse Peeves–because sometimes my favorite accessories drive me nuts.

I had this idea a couple weeks ago, when I put on one of my favorite pairs of dark jeans, a white blouse and my Chanel Boy Bag. The Boy Bag that I have is a muted silver and cream metallic combination, which has a slightly sueded finish but is still categorized as leather. I love this Chanel bag. It’s totally different than most of the bags in my collection in its color and texture, and it’s simply a good bag.

Chanel Boy Bag Discoloration-2

I hear so many people talk about color transfer from denim and I should have known better, but I thought the bag was sitting on my hip, which was covered by my shirt, and not rubbing on my jeans. Although I was conscious of the potential issue, I didn’t exactly make a valiant effort to keep my bag away from my jeans.

We were at the Fort Lauderdale Winter Boat Parade (which is a parade with boats on water, just as the name suggests, and it’s pretty awesome), having a great time. I went home that night and put my bag down; it still looked great to me at the time. It wasn’t until about a week later when I was bringing the bag out again that I caught the backside–and the major blue transfer–on my bag.

Chanel Boy Bag Discoloration-3

It happened. The blue from my denim rubbed right against my bag and created quite the predicament for me. I have yet to try to treat it, because, to be honest, I feel like I could easily make it worse, and I never treat my bags. And this isn’t the bag’s fault; if anything, it’s the jeans’ fault. Even then, denim is typically marked letting us know it may bleed, and lo and behold, it bled on my rather expensive and highly coveted Chanel bag.

So this is my first purse peeve: owning a great bag but needing to be super cognizant of what you pair it with so you don’t have any color transfer. I guess I expect too much from my bags and jeans, but I’m peeved that I now have blue around the back side of my bag. Any suggestions what to do about this?

  • PJGambler

    Were the jeans brand new, not yet been laundered? I have never had that happen but never wear new jeans unless they’ve been washed a couple of times. I also stay away from light colored bags because I always get either ink marks or lipstick smudges on them, or both. Perhaps, you can take it to Chanel repair and have the bag dyed a much darker color. I’ve done that with Chanel shoes which were a light colored leather. Good luck and sorry it happened to you.

    • http://www.purseblog.com/ Megs Mahoney Dusil

      I’ve been wearing these jeans for a year!! They’ve been washed a bunch of times :(

      • PJGambler

        oh no, I never would have expected it then, so sorry.
        Maybe an excellent suede cleaner could help or I’d still ask Chanel, If this were your bag what would you do?” The majority of the buying public wear jeans, so this should just not happen.

  • Nini Kaferle

    Try Apple Brand Leather Cleaner? Worked for me, but on a faux-leather bag… Good luck and kind regards from France!

  • ninfa

    no matter if the jeans are new or not, that happens is terrific but in my city exist one place which solution this problems and my handbags be like new i hope you find who can fixed or cleaned, good luck ! from Mexico

  • http://asd2mom.blogspot.com EliseRonan

    you need a good professional cleaner that specializes in leather. They specialize in stains on leather

  • Cara M

    I’ve had this happen to me and it makes me insane! I had worn the jeans tons and washed plenty. I really gave no thought to them bleeding on my bag. Luckily it was a coach bag and not Chanel, so not nearly as expensive of a bag. But it’s just not cool.

  • Aly

    I have a gray suede Celine All Soft that a blue shirt rubbed off on… The shirt wasn’t even new, had been washed! So upsetting b/c dye on suede really can’t be cleaned/fixed. Total bummer. It’s this reason as to why I hesitate to buy suede. I believe leather you can clean.

  • Sheena Ernst

    Umm.. Can’t you just buy a replacement..?? #richgirlproblems

    • Deborah

      Why are you on the Purse Blog? #justwondering

      • Sheena Ernst

        RE: I’m a lover of all things handbags & I have a ‘closet’ on Poshmark & other similar online platforms. Also, just to clarify, I didn’t mean my above comment in a ‘snide’ manner. It’s just that while it’s unfortunate that the color transfer happened to her bag.. I think we can all ‘rest assured’ that Megs will be able to replace it soon ; ) #shesgotthebucks #chanelmightsendheroneaspr

      • Mya Wilkes

        Contrary to what you have said, your tone is actually indeed snide, negative even! It’s not always about the “bucks” as you’ve put it; sometimes people get attached to their personal items ( I know I do) and in this case, its simply painful because the bag is beautiful and she may not be able to find the exact same bag even if she was gonna replace it.

      • Sheena Ernst

        RE: Sorry, Mya, that you have drawn that conclusion/opinion about my previous comment. The main ‘gist’ was that there is a difference between many (posssibly the majority of) Purse Blog reader -&- Megs/the rest of the PB staff. That difference being that a lot of readers have to save up over a long period of time in order to purchase just one luxury handbag, which is their only high end bag. I believe based on the ‘evidence’ of photographs & stories on here, that Megs & the other editors have the financial means to have a collection. Also, while it’s obviously apparent that Megs was upset about the suede damage, I believe she & the others on the PB team are not the type of women to get to heavily attached to a material item. They see the handbags for what they are: pretty & high quality totes etc. to lug their stuff around.

      • Mya Wilkes

        A quick sweep through the purse forum and even the comments will immediately show you that you have it quite wrong. A very good number of the members, if not the majority have more than a few bags and yes, maybe some have to save but most of us do, it doesn’t mean its a terrible struggle, it just means we are willing to plan towards things we want/lust after. A good number are also gifted these lovely items by spouses, family etc. And regardless of how Megs and the team may come across to you with respect to their lifestyles/purses, there is still a certain level of decorum one should try to attain when leaving comments on a public forum. Anyway that’s my opinion.

      • Sheena Ernst

        RE: Mya, in my humble personal opinion, you’re actually the one that started a little ‘tiff’ here with me.. This is incredibly silly (!) & I’m not going to comment back again. Sorry for whatever misunderstanding you created from my original comment.

      • Mya Wilkes

        Lool! Now, your last sentence and hash tags made me laugh. Why did you come to the conclusion it might be a cultural difference? Very weird because i’m indeed from London (UK) lol, but I imagine as PB is American, most of its readers are? Anyway, i didn’t mean to have a “tiff” with you Sheena, I guess the humour was lost on me with your reference to someone having the “bucks” and saying #richgirlproblems. I love America, Vegas was insane, I have to go back and im absolutely infatuated with Cheesecake factory! Truce?

      • Lulubelle

        My opinion is that you are way uptight.

    • Amy

      I thought you were funny! :-)

      • shueaddict

        me too! and I am not US, maybe a little UK by association ;-)

    • Kerri

      I thought it was funny too

  • macroblue

    Light colored suede bags never last. Don’t even bother with them.

  • Amazona

    …and this is why I do not own expensive bags in a light color. Or no suede bags. The only one even close to light is a mustard yellow Mulberry and that never goes out with me if there’s a lot of humidity and I’m wearing jeans. No matter if they’re old or new, denim jeans ALWAYS bleed! :(
    Just looking at your poor bag makes me sad – if it was anything cheaper I’d say try an eraser but since it is what it is, I’d take it to a leather cleaning specialist.

  • Ellejays11

    I have a Damier Speedy Azur and I’ve had a lot of transfer on it, especially in Maui where it was humid and my clothes carried more moisture. That might be why your jeans transferred (humidity) when they otherwise wouldn’t? The biggest culprit for me was a pair of dark wash denim, and a black cheap polyester swimsuit cover-up (I should know better). Anyway, the leather on this LV is not very soft and I think that’s what has helped some of the transfer fade and wipe off. I’m sure the softer leathers, such as your Chanel, absorb the dye much more. I’ve been told there isn’t much you can do by sales people, but others have had success with professional cleaners. The handles on my bag are another story…

    • Amazona

      You could try some alcoholic hand sanitizer wipes on your LV, since it’s what they recommend using.

      • Ellejays11

        Thanks – I will give it a shot! All they suggested to me was a touch of warm water and a cloth…

      • PJGambler

        Think you mean non-alcoholic wipes, right?

      • PJGambler

        Think you mean NON-alcoholic wipes, right?

    • Winn

      Your bag is not leather, but canvas. Canvas can be cleaned easily with a wet microfiber cloth or as the other user recommended, hand sanitizer wipes.

      The handles on your bag are leather, which is why they are not as easy to clean.

      • Ellejays11

        Apologies – yes, correct, it is canvas. There is a lot of transfer that won’t budge, after a few years of wear, but overall it’s easier than leather. I’ve started covering the handles. I have the Mansur Gavriel bucket bag in rosa (my only other light coloured bag) and it’s getting some transfer on the corners, with wear over time on those areas.

      • Winn

        I love the rosa MGs! I do think Mansur Gavriel bags are known for showing their wear a bit. I have a camello leather tote and its appearance has certainly changed a lot since I bought it.

      • Ellejays11

        I’m trying to learn to embrace its changing look – “character” :)

  • Kate

    Maybe Chanel sees this and helps you out!

  • Finem Lauda

    This is why I only like dark bags and limit myself to saffiano leather light colored bags. I wear all black, all the time and I’m very cautious about which bags I purchase. I know I can ruin a light colored bag just by looking at it wrong! I tell myself, do not waste the money on a light colored suede bag. It will, inevitably, get ruined. Saffiano can be cleaned, at the least, I’ve cleaned black (yes black) transfer entirely off of the only white bag I own. It’s a huge risk buying a non-saffiano leather bag and not immediately getting it treated. It’s such a gamble. imo, not, not, not worth it at the end of the day.

  • Dylan

    It’s isn’t suede, it just has a sueded finish.
    But Megs I’m sorry!

  • tPFmariah9999

    Oh, no! You totally have my sympathy here, Megs! This happened to me many times with my LV Damier Azur pieces – I don’t have one piece that doesn’t show demin transfer and I’ve tried so hard to be conscientious when carrying them with denim, yet I always fail. :( So sorry this happened to you as well. My biggest surprise was this holiday season, it happened to me when I paired my festive holiday red blouse with my white cashmere open cardigan…the red blouse transferred to my white cashmere cardigan and devastated me. Who knew? Hope you find a solution to save your Lovely Chanel bag.

    • Winn

      Lucky for you, Vuitton Damier is canvas, not leather. You should be able to easily clean your pieces with a wet cloth. Unfortunately leather care is much more difficult.

  • b

    Have you tried contacting the chanel boutique? They told me they can repair damage to lambskin. Maybe they have a special cleaner for this. I mean I have heard of Hermes getting coffee out of birkins. Just an idea.

  • missarewa

    I’m so sorry this happened to you Megs. It’s the price we have to pay for loving delicate and light colored AND prohibitively expensive bags :(

  • Mya Wilkes

    Man, I would be effing pissed! I’m so sorry this happened Megs. Best I can say is run it over to Chanel, see if they can remedy the situation. Fingers tightly crossed for you!

  • Karina

    That’s a total horror-I don’t even own the bag and I lost my breath seeing the damage! I will tell you what you need. you need a handbag insurance policy.

  • Ah Sa

    awww i hear you Megs..

    it happened to my rose suede PS1.. never even gave a thought about what i was wearing while i was carrying her out and about.. and i wear mostly black.. was too late when i realized the colour transfers!! Have been treating it for a year, slowly using a suede eraser to take out most of the darker patches, but still couldn’t get most of it out. =(

    good luck with treating your Boy!!

  • aidan

    I think it looks kinda cool lol

  • buffmom33

    I actually was told once that chanel uses baby wipes to clean bags, the fragrance free ones. I do not know if that will work on suede but I have a yellow WOC in lambskin that I cleaned treated a small spot with a baby wipe and its gone. I would contact Chanel and see what the advise. Good Luck:) Your bag still looks AMAZE by the way!!!

  • Yoshi1296

    I think you should just leave it alone. I know it sucks and I’m really sorry to hear what happened but, honestly, I’ve heard more horror stories of bags getting ruined from treating it from a color transfer disaster.

  • Guest

    Megs you really have bad luck with your Chanel bags-I remember reading about a screw coming off another bag and then this. Maybe the gods are trying to send you a sign that you should stay away from Chanel?!

  • Sandy

    Ohhh!!! I would be so sad! My husband said that perhaps you wear your dark jeans and turn the bag around the other side…sort of a tye die effect. LOL!

    • shueaddict

      Did he mean the bag equivalent of ‘turning the other cheek’ ;-)))) ?

  • Dee

    My heart go’s out to you. Don’t try to fix it yourself. Bring it back to chanel and ask them to help you. They do restoration on bags.

  • FashionableLena

    I wore a red top and the dye transferred on a mint colored Marc Jacobs leather bag that I had. I bought the top from a high end charity resale shop, and I washed it myself before wearing. Still got red on it. I’ve even seen those fabric monogram Coach bags with transfer. Today, I carried my Gucci monogram fabric bag with my dark jeans today only because my sweater went half way down my thigh. Now, reading this, I probably won’t do that again. To be honest if I paid that much money, I’d take it back to Chanel to see what they can do. Sometimes, cobblers also restore handbags as well as specialty dry cleaners.

  • Dani

    Try Leather Surgeons if Chanel can’t help, they do great work. They’re in PA but I think you can ship.

  • Valerie

    I would try a brand new, dry, straight-from-the-box Magic Eraser with a VERY light touch to see if it picks up the blue. I had good luck with this on my linen upholstered bed that had magenta color transfer from a comforter. If that doesn’t work, I’d try a white Magic Rub eraser (the kind you get at the art store), again with a very light touch, to see if it grabs the color. I’ve used this on light colored bags with success but never suede. I’d take the bag to a professional before using anything wet–my concern is the blue might bleed and look even worse. Good luck!

    • STTexas

      OMG, those Magic Rub pencil erasers have come in so handy on just about any spot or stain!!

    • jeneelovee

      Valerie, do you think the Magic Eraser would work on to remove a pen mark? I have a sad pen mark on the exterior of my Balenciaga city bag.

  • Lisa

    I feel for you Megs! Do they have a “bag spa” where you live? We have them in Singapore. I take my tired-looking handbags in to get polished and spiffied up.

  • Andrea

    This exact thing happened to me with a light grey Chanel Hobo that I recieved as a gift. (I would never buy lamb skin myself). Anyhow, my saleswoman sent it out to fix it. Took 5 weeks, the stain was out- but the texture of the bag was totally different. Not nearly as soft as before. They also charged me $200.

    Good luck with yours. Hopefully the texture of yours takes better to the cleaning chemicals they use

  • SeeJay

    What the WHAT!!! Omg, never ever, EVER wear dark denim with any bag other than dark navy, canvas coated or black!!

  • Kris

    Always use your purses carefully! The occasions, outfit, weather, whether you will get drunk or not, etc and etc. i feel for you, Meg. My balenciaga stained badly by dark wash denim; i sent back my lady Dior bag to Dior, they recommended to redye, however, after got my lady Dior back, the feel of the bag is not the same. I am not saying that they did a bad job. You just can tell, the feel is not the same. I compared with the ones in Christian Dior boutique. Even the sales lady in dior agreed with me. My phantom bag-I didn’t store it the right way for one HOT BLAZINg summer when I left my Vegas house. Winter, I went back, the leather got so dry and rough, I sent back to boutique and they performed the “bag spa”. It “helped”, just “helped”. So always use/treasure our bags/purses, girlfriends :)

    • Stefanie

      “Whether you will get drunk or not”, hahaha, love it!

      I am really sorry Megs!

  • Bipasha

    A ruined Chanel bag would put me in a dark room with sad music for a few days. For that reason I chucked all my dark wash jeans (last pair were dumped this week) and I wear grey or light wash jeans. It may not be as dressy as a dark wash, but I’m saving my bags.

  • A

    This reminded me of what happened to my gorgeous camel lambskin Chanel bag. I wore it with a denim parka not knowing that the color would transfer and it did! What’s worse, I took to the Chanel boutique and they refused to help just because I didn’t buy it from THEIR store. I had to take it to a well-known laundry which “specializes” in cleaning designer bags, and they RUINED my bag even more :( It literally looked like they put the bag in a washing machine!

    So be veerrryyyy careful where you take your bag to treat it :(

  • Joana Richard

    Well, I have a lot of LV bags, and the major of them are Azur, but the only one that I ever have color transfer was a alma bb in monogram all over the leather, and a friend of mine have the same problem in a alma bb damier ebene, not in the trieted leather, but in the canvas, YES in the ebene canvas, you could see the blue all over the brown squares!

    In that case, i can apply rubber in them but it wanst perfect.

    In suede with time the blue jeans color it will pass but not 100% Maybee in a shoe shop they can sell a cream for suede bag that can clean that…

    Suede Its the worse to have color transfer :( sorry to read this, I will die if it happen to me!

  • Jennifer Sesta

    ugh! I was in a similar predicament recently when I dripped some hand sanitizer on my Michael Kors Collection snakeskin Harlow Tote. It destroyed the texture and changed the color. Technically my fault, but so frustrating when a bag is too delicate!

  • http://batman-news.com Nini

    I had similar shock around 2 weeks ago when I found out that my vintage Chanel bag, which is black leather but has white details turned burgundy because color transferred from my new coat :(((( So it is now black with half details in white and half details in burgundy. Any suggestions what to do?

  • Jennifer

    I’m so sorry to see this. I had something similar happen several years ago with a Marc Jacobs bag; I thought my shirt was long enough & I was so frustrated to see denim transfer on my vanilla leather bag!! My dark jeans also ruin my light colored leather interior of my car, but the seats were treated so the denim color wipes right off!! I wish they offered that service for bags! As much as I love my dark jeans, I will be glad when the trends turn & light colored denim is more the look!

  • Scottsdale Kim

    I owned a white suede leather Jimmy Choo bag years ago. I got it on sale and I carried an eraser in the bag. Whenever I was waiting on an appointment I would rub out any marks with this eraser. Worked like a charm although the texture I believe was different then on your bag.

    I am a big fan of patent leather which is another headache when it comes to transference.

  • kemilia

    I remember you recently got a light pink Givenchy bag–keep it far away from those jeans! And I’m very sorry this happened to your Boy bag; like some of the others, I pretty much have no suede anything in my wardrobe (suede + me = stains).

  • Lori

    There is a great place in Beverly Hills that cleans and fixes high end handbags. I know you are in NY (or at least I think so), but would be happy to get you their information if you want to give them a call.

  • Lori

    Hmm, I thought I had posted, so sorry if this shows up a second time. There is a great place in Beverly Hills that cleans and repairs high end hand bags (and shoes). I am happy to get you their information if you like.

  • BonneChien

    Best suggestion is to take it to Chanel to see what they can do. “Lovin My Bags” sells a treatment for dye transfer, but if it was my Chanel bag I would take it to a good professional to treat.
    I had the same dye transfer issue with a Brighton bag, denim smudges on a white & silver leather bucket bag. Brighton was able to get the blue out, now as good as new.

  • shueaddict

    aww, Megs, accidents do happen! I have been known to toss out jeans that after 3 washes still leave fade marks on my leather car seat. Call it a preemptive strike ;-)

  • GladRagBags

    Use a really good suede brush first…stroke in gently but firmly direction first, then change direction. That should begin to lift the color damage. Then work with a brand new, dry Magic Eraser to treat any remaining tinge of color. Then brush again with the suede brush. If there is still about if color, (it should be very pale or gone by now), you can then take it to a high end leather specialist. Suede brushes have very fun shirt or medium length metal wire bristles and can be found in any high end show repair shop. Good luck. #gladragbags #greenchic

  • SCHandbags

    This sucks. Please contact me Teria @ 1-888-320-0077 http://www.sparklingcleanhandbags.com I service handbags. I have been successful with cleaning suede handbags. Give me a chance to try and clean it. I always test the bags so I will not make it worst by trying to clean.

  • http://BikePretty.com/ Bike Pretty

    I love the concept of this post! As a handbag designer, this information is super helpful to me. I plan on making a white leather bag in the future and I’ll take special care to test the color transfer.

    By the way, what Meg described is called “crocking” in the industry. It is standard for the suppliers (the tanneries) to make sure that the color doesn’t bleed onto other fabrics and leathers. However, it’s not common for reverse to be tested!

    Please keep these purse peeves coming!

  • http://BikePretty.com/ Bike Pretty

    I love the concept of this post! As a handbag designer, this information is super helpful to me. I plan on making a white leather bag in the future and I’ll take special care to test the color transfer.

    By the way, what Meg described is called “crocking” in the industry. It is standard for the suppliers (the tanneries) to make sure that the color doesn’t bleed onto other fabrics and leathers. However, it’s not common for reverse to be tested!

    Please keep these purse peeves coming!

  • Kiddo

    I think you should just trasfer the blue dye to the rest of the bag….make a totally different design on the handbag.

  • semijen

    I have a Bottega Veneta hobo in a cream color, and I didn’t get transfer from denim; it was even weirder. I set it down on some teal throw pillows on my bed got transfer from those! I took it to a leather expert to be cleaned. They got out the stain, but the leather was not as soft as it was. I recommend not getting yours treated.

  • Kim

    Rago brothers shoe repair Morristown nj they work wonders the top designers in the area such as short hills mall send the bags to him to repair.
    Call them 973-539-7949 good luck

  • Halim Amin

    Oh no. How horrible! But there is just that teeny tiny feeling when it really felt like a moment when I wanted to say a girl(or boy) who still think that she will pair her dark with her light bags totally deserved it. Just saying!

    • Zabina Mirza

      Can I suggest you have the bag dyed a darker colour completely instead?

  • Alex

    Well Chanel should able to replace or to give you credit in order to exchange something else at least. I think when you pay more than certain amount of money, then it should come kind of warranty certificate like when you buy any kind of electric products. It is not fare for all of us if those high end design company not provide any warranty policy in my opinion. At least they should give us 3-5 years warranty and able to exchange a new item without ANY EXTRA charge. That’s way we would appreciate high standard customer service and keep coming back to buy more. But lately most of designers bags are hideously getting expensive( don’t think they are high quality and use too much chemical treatment which cause other trouble )and think not worth to spend. Anyway.

    • Kris

      This is crazy talk. So your theory is you bought a Lamborghini, you scratched it, you asked the dealership to replace you a brand new car. It’s their fault to not make the car un-scratchable.

  • Hello There, Jade

    My black leggings bled on my white Michael Kors messenger bag… and now I’m kinda disappointed I even bought a white bag :/

  • Casey

    I would try to use a white eraser or a suede eraser and suede brush to help remove some of the blue. When it comes to light colors, especially suede or nubuck, there’s very little you can do to remove indigo dye. It’s one of those things where you need to be on lockdown making sure your bag is not touching your pants whenever you where it.

  • potinbobo

    I have a Chanel Boy Lambskin in White. I just call the Chanel Boutique in San Francisco. They told me i can use the Cadillac boot & Shoe Care Leather Conditioner (Pic in Yelp- Chanel Boutique in SF) as protectant or spot cleaning. If you need big cleaning and repair, you can bring back to shop and it charge from $200 to 500 depends on the handbag conditions and also take 2-4 month.

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