Today’s (slightly delayed) confessional was submitted by a psychiatric nurse from the Land of the Thousand Lakes. Her small collection is ever revolving, a new bag in would mean an old bag out. She doesn’t permit materialism to weight her down; in best Marie Kondo form, if something doesn’t spark joy, she gets rid of it. This confessional is the antidote to the typical western approach to consumerism, which is why we chose it as this week’s CC installment. Enjoy and don’t forget to submit your own CC at the link below.
Gender Identity: Female
Occupation: Full time psychiatric nurse and full time psychology student
Household Income: $100,000
Are you a PurseForum member?
How many bags do you own? I own 7 bags.
What bags are in your collection?
- Alexander Wang prisma tote in black leather
- Proenza Schouler PS11 classic bag in black leather
- Louis Vuitton pochette metis in black empreinte leather
- Céline nano luggage in midnight blue colour
- Céline large trio in black lambskin
- Gucci marmont flap bag in fuchsia coloured velvet
- Gucci dionysus WOC in black leather
Additionally I do have some SLGs but I’m not including those in this list.
How much is your collection worth? 9150 euros (about $10,000 usd)
What is your most expensive bag? My Céline nano luggage is the most expensive bag I own, but I bought it pre-loved. I paid the most on my Louis Vuitton Pochette Metis which was 1650 euros.
What are the most important brands or pieces in your collection? I really love the aesthetic of Phoebe Philos Céline and my favorite bag right now is my Céline nano luggage.
But regardless I don’t tend to think that one bag is more important than the other. Every bag has its purpose and I love them all equally.
What age did you get your first designer bag, and what was it? I was 20 years old when I bought my first designer handbag. It was a Louis Vuitton Alma BB in black Epi leather and I loved it to death. I used it almost everyday for few years, but sold it forward a few months ago. I had (and still have) so many black bags it got lost in the collection.
Many would not sell their first piece but I’m ruthless in that way. If something doesn’t get used, I will get rid of it.
Is there a specific bag you are looking to purchase next? I was on a hunt for Céline nano luggage for so long in dark blue colour with silver hardware, and I recently found one on pre-loved market.
What surprised me after that is that I am right now feeling quite content with my bags. If something, I’m actually looking to sell one of them. My Proenza Schouler PS11 and Louis Vuitton Pochette Metis are similar in size and colour and I like my PM more, so my Proenza Schouler is not getting much use anymore.
But yeah, right now I don’t have a specific bag I’m looking to purchase next, though I do have a few I do admire on others.
Any particular bag that holds a special sentimental value? My first bag will always have a soft spot on my heart, even though I have sold it away. I think I can still admire it and appreciate the nostalgia it gives me without needing to own it.
Do you feel like your bags change people’s perceptions of you or how you’re treated? Not really. My SO and a few friends know about my love for designer bags, but they don’t judge. They know me and they don’t really focus on my bags. I buy my bags with my own money and handle my finances properly. I don’t have debt and I do have enough money saved for a house down payment. I have inherited some property so that does help though!
Otherwise there really isn’t that much designer handbags in my city and I don’t think people really recognise my bags. Sometimes I do get a knowing compliment of my bags and that kind of feels nice, like a secret only the commentator and me share.
How often do you buy new bags? Usually one or twice a year, though in this year I have sold few bags and hence also bought more.
Which stores do you frequent the most? They don’t have any designer stores in my city, so when I travel I like to visit local stores. I also like to browse net-a-porter, Farfetch and Mytheresa online sometimes.
Do you ever buy second-hand bags? Where do you buy used? I do! I have bought all my Céline bags pre-loved, because Céline is quite hard to get where I am. No regrets, but you do have to be careful when shopping second hand to not get counterfeits. I like Vestiaire Collective because many of the sellers are from EU and then I don’t need to pay taxes. I have also once purchased from the RealReal.
Do you sell old bags to pay for new purchases? I have sold bags I don’t use on Vestiaire Collective. When I buy a bag I do intend it to be a forever piece, but sometimes the bags don’t work out for your lifestyle, your lifestyle changes or your tastes just change. I hate to keep stuff I don’t use and if I can get money out of my old bags, I sell them. If the bags are not worth a lot I donate them.
Do you ever feel societal pressure to purchase more bags? Not really. In real life there is nothing to pressure me into buying a bag.
Social media can sometimes push a new bag but I think you have to be critical in social media world. Of course I do feel sometimes tempted, but I do not spend that much time on social media. I don’t have a Facebook or Instagram accounts, because I also think they make people mentally more unwell and anxious.
Though if you start to think about it, I’m really interested in fashion and have my own distinctive style. I was first introduced to the designer handbag world via blogs when I was a teenager, so in a way they have influenced me. Because in reality, a designer handbag is never a necessity and I don’t think I would never have gotten the idea to buy one without all the exposure online.
Do you consider your bag purchases investments? Never! Designer handbags are a luxury, never a necessity. It is not a smart buy by any means and if you grow tired to bag at some point, you are not going to get your money’s worth out of it. There are a few exceptions like a Chanel or Hermes bags that can increase in value, but I still wouldn’t think of it as an investment. You never know what is going to happen, maybe one day the price decreases or what if you ruin your bag? The only “investment” I do when buying a designer handbag is to my own happiness, and even then the material does not actually make you happy!
Who influences your buying decisions? No one special. I might get randomly inspired by Pinterest, Youtube, TV and magazines etc.
Are sales associate relationships instrumental to your shopping? Not on my shopping. As said before I do not have any favorite boutiques I visit, but I do understand that it can be instrumental to some.
Why do you enjoy shopping, beyond just acquiring something new? I love fashion, its history and expressing myself. When I look like my best version of myself I feel confident and strong. I do really like myself even when I haven’t put an effort looking good, but in a way I think taking care of yourself and looking neat is also a form of self love.
Have you ever felt like you received inferior service at a store or boutique due to your appearance, ethnicity or gender? No, I have not.
Who pays for your bags? Me, myself and I. We have separate money with my SO and we never need to fight about it! We split all shared costs and use the rest of our money how we see fit. He does make more than me though and sometimes that also benefits me. I have inherited property and that have helped me with my savings. Oh, and going to school in my country is free, so I don’t have any tuition to pay.
Do you set aside a budget for your bag purchases? No, not for bags specifically, but I do but money aside for rainy days and “for fun”. I am only allowed to buy a bag if I have enough in fun savings. It depends on month how much I put aside, sometimes I can put 500 euros, sometimes I only put 100 euros. If I happen to get unexpected money like tax refunds, I try to save most of it. My mom is a crazy saver and I have learned a bit from her, even though I do also use it every now and then if I really want to. I think it is good to be smart about your finances, but you also have to enjoy life.
The Taboo Topics
Have you ever purchased a counterfeit because you couldn’t afford a designer item? When I was a teenager a got a Balenciaga city bag look-a-like from eBay. It was real leather bag and in surprisingly good quality, cost me like 100 euros. It looked exactly like a Balenciaga without any logos and I loved it to death. At the time I didn’t really understand why you should not support counterfeits, would not buy any today.
Do you ever hide purchases from your significant other? He is not that interested in my clothing and bags so I never hide them from him but I don’t tend to largely display them to him either. Sometimes I am really excited and can’t help showing my newest handbag to him though and he is always so polite and tries to look interested an ask questions.
What’s the craziest thing you’ve done to afford a bag? Hah I need to admit I once bought a bag with my credit card. I had been eyeing it, I was abroad and had a chance to buy it in person and knew I was going to get my tax refund money soon. So I pulled the trigger and paid the bill fully when the tax refund came.
Do you think your shopping is ever a problem? Have you ever felt like you were struggling with a shopping addiction? It is easy to get caught up in buy buy buy, our whole society is pushing us stuff we don’t need. I’m a minimalist, not the most rural one but still a one, and try always to think twice before purchasing. I hate excessive stuff and I’m also really enjoying the konmari method.
I’m not perfect and have wasted my money sometimes quite recklessly. I do sometimes caught myself wanting to buy just for the sake of buying, but you have to be conscious of your tendencies so it is easier to stop yourself before it is too late.
The Rest Of It
Any other expensive hobbies or passions? I am the kind of person who likes beautiful, durable and good quality things, but am satisfied with little. I love nice handbags and clothes and want them all to be “my favorite pieces”, but I don’t want excessive amount of these. I am not a collector, I need everything to have a purpose. But every now and then I can put more money in a quality table or sofa that will hopefully last a long time. Sometimes I like to travel and that is not exactly cheap either, but I don’t travel the most expensive way either.
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