In today’s installment of Closet Confessionals, we meet a handbag lover in her early thirties who has been collecting bags since she was 22. From the purchase of her very first Marc Jacobs bag, she soon dove into the premium designer world headfirst and has since amassed a seriously enviable collection of coveted bags from the big H and Chanel. Though this confessor admits to struggling with her shopping at times, especially in her twenties when her attitude was very “you only live once,” these days things are a bit more under control. Though, she does admit to occasionally hiding items from her spouse as he is a bit more fiscally responsible.

CC 143’s attitude towards bags and shopping is extremely relatable, and she loves to browse online for inspiration, whether it be on social media, or on resale sites like eBay and Fashionphile. Over the last decade of collecting, this handbag lover admits to buying and selling many bags, and now understands the thought process behind streamlining a collection of classics that will never go out of style. Read the full CC now and don’t forget to submit your own!

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The Basics

Age: 32
Gender Identity: Female
Location: Los Angeles, CA
Occupation: Senior Commercial Real Estate Underwriter
Industry: Banking
Salary: $130,000
Household Income: $280,000

The Bags

Are you a PurseForum member? Yes

How many bags do you own? 10

What bags are in your collection?

How much is your collection worth? About $65K

What is your most expensive bag? Hermès Birkin 25 I purchased from Fashionphile in 2017 over retail price around $12K (now it’s way more).

What are the most important brands or pieces in your collection? Hermès & Chanel. Over the years, I’ve sold and bought (even rebought) numerous bags. I’d sell at a loss or pay over retail. After years of doing that, I finally know that the classic pieces are meant to be in my forever collection. Hermès and Chanel retain their values and they’re classics for a reason.

What age did you get your first designer bag, and what was it? My first non-premium designer bag was a Marc Jacobs Natasha bag I bought for myself after receiving my first real paycheck back in 2011 (I was 22) and was on sale for $250. My first premium designer bag was a Vintage Chanel 2.55 mini crossbody that I had bid on and won from a well-known Japanese reseller on eBay for $1,200 in 2013. Now that same bag is retailing for over $3K which seems insane to me! Should have kept it.

Is there a specific bag you are looking to purchase next? The dream would be another Hermès Birkin 25 in Togo leather or Kelly 25/28 in chevre leather. A girl can dream…

Any particular bag that holds a special sentimental value? Hermès Kelly 35 noir ghw in Togo leather. My husband bought this for me from The RealReal (got it authenticated again by Bababebi of course) when I left for a new job after 8 years at previous. This year has been really special for both of us since we purchased our first home, had the birth of our first child, and then a new job!

Do you feel like your bags change people’s perceptions of you or how you’re treated? Yes, especially when I walk into luxury stores to browse bags.

Have your bag-carrying habits changed since Covid? No, I still carry my Hermès Kelly bags to work. They’re more discreet since they don’t have logos.

The Shopping

How often do you buy new bags? At least one or two per year but I always make sure to sell some that I don’t wear often to mitigate for the cost.

Has the Coronavirus pandemic changed your shopping habits or overall attitude towards luxury? Yes, online browsing has gotten worse. A lot of the handbags on the resale market have doubled in price and it’s so damn annoying! The same bag I could have gotten for less than $15K is now over $23K.

Which stores do you frequent the most? I love to browse online. I check hermes.com daily to see if some coveted bags pop up (always out of stock when I put it in cart though), fashionphile.com, therealreal.com, saclab.com & ebay.com.

Do you ever buy second-hand bags? Where do you buy used? Yes, I love buying second-hand because I don’t want to stress about babying my bags. I’ve been a die-hard buyer/seller of second-hand bags.

Fashionphile, the RealReal, Boutiquepatina.

Do you sell old bags to pay for new purchases? Yes, the majority of the time I do. I’ve sold a lot to Fashionphile because they’re quick with ach payments. Boutiquepatina too, Theresa is very knowledgeable and prompt with responses to my questions.

Do you ever feel societal pressure to purchase more bags? No, I just love bags.

Do you consider your bag purchases investments? Yes, I’ve sold Hermès Kelly 32 noir ghw in epsom leather (full package) I bought from eBay for $9k and sold it for $12k. It’s all about timing and the bag’s condition/full accessories.

Who influences your buying decisions? Me after browsing for hours on IG/YouTube/the PurseForum

Are sales associate relationships instrumental to your shopping? No.

Why do you enjoy shopping, beyond just acquiring something new? Traveling! I miss traveling so much. It’ll be for a while now that I have a newborn baby.

Have you ever felt like you received inferior service at a store or boutique due to your appearance, ethnicity or gender? Yes, one time I wore Birkenstocks and dressed very casually because I was pregnant. I was only treated ok once my sister purchased a classic Chanel flap lol

The Money

Who pays for your bags? Me & my husband (at times)

Do you set aside a budget for your bag purchases? No, I work in banking and am not afraid to admit I don’t have self-control lol. I sell some to make up for a hefty purchase.

The Taboo Topics

Have you ever purchased a counterfeit because you couldn’t afford a designer item? Yes, before making the big splurge, I purchased this fake Chanel patent mini rectangle flap to see how it would look on me. People couldn’t really tell because it was patent but I felt so guilty.

Do you ever hide purchases from your significant other? Yes, because he’s the total opposite from me. He doesn’t shop much, wants to re-invest our money into stocks. [He is] definitely more financially responsible so every time he sees something new, he asks me so many questions of the cost, where I got it from, etc. So sometimes I hide it until he finds out.

What’s the craziest thing you’ve done to afford a bag? Credit card debt. I’m ashamed to admit it but my mentality in my 20s was YOLO.

Do you think your shopping is ever a problem? Have you ever felt like you were struggling with a shopping addiction? Yes, it’s a constant struggle for me. I just really love bags, shoes & clothes. I always wanted to work in the fashion industry. But now that I’ve been in my career for a decade, I work harder to get bonuses and treat myself here and there. It’s one of the pushes that makes me to work and not quit my job lol

The Rest Of It

Any other expensive hobbies or passions? Nope.

Anything else you would like to include? I’ve been an avid reader of bag confessionals for a while now. I lurk here and there on tPF as well. At the end of the day, our love and passion for bags unite us from all over the world! Keep posting and sharing.

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J B
J B
3 months ago

Whoa 😳 that’s some collection … beautiful bags!

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