In today’s installment of Closet Confessionals we meet a 30-something stay at home mom whose love for bags is innate. Though her mom, sister and husband do not understand it, this confessor is truly enamored by handbags. She admits to being obsessed with everything about them from the way they smell to the way they make her feel, she simply can’t get enough! While she admits to hiding purchases from her husband who doesn’t quite understand her need to collect, her favorite bag also happens to be the one (and likely only) bag he purchased for her after the birth of their daughter. Though she admits that social media can be influential and her shopping has the potential to be a problem, this confessor is also able to be realistic, reminding herself to buy what works for her budget and lifestyle. Get the rest of the scoop below and don’t forget to submit your own!
Gender Identity: Female
Location: Perth, Australia
Occupation: Teacher but currently a stay at home mum
Industry: Department of education
Household Income: $200,000.00
Are you a PurseForum member? Yes – Pkac
How many bags do you own? 10 and a few SLGS
What bags are in your collection?
Chanel reissue 226
Givenchy mini pandora
LV favorite mm DA
LV favorite mm DE
LV speedy 35 DE
Celine large trio
Gucci marmont matelasse
Coach saddle bag 23
Alexander wang mini rockie
Alexander Wang diego
How much is your collection worth? $17,000
What is your most expensive bag? My Chanel reissue
What are the most important brands or pieces in your collection? My Chanel reissue, as I didn’t expect to own a Chanel until I was in my 40s, but ended up getting a fantastic deal on a preloved reissue. Opening the package and holding my Chanel for the first time was like nothing I have ever experienced before – the bag exceeded my expectations on every level!!
And also my Gucci Marmont as it was a present from my husband after our first daughter was born (the one and likely only designer bag I will receive from him which is a whole other story).
What age did you get your first designer bag, and what was it? I have always loved bags, but was never in a position to own a designer bag until my early 30s, so prior to that I used to leather collect bags around the $100 to $250 price range.
The first designer bag I purchased was my Alexander Wang Diego and I distinctly remember feeling a little nervous about having spent $800 plus on a bag – how times have changed!! It’s so true that you slowly become desensitised to spending thousands.
Is there a specific bag you are looking to purchase next? I’m so happy with the most recent acquisition of my Chanel reissue that I think I’ll have an extended break from buying bags, but that said there will always be bags in the back of my mind that I’d love to own one day. A few off the top of my head would be:
– Chanel reissue 224 / classic WOC
– YSL Kate
– Valentino glam lock in grained leather
Any particular bag that holds a special sentimental value? Definitely my Gucci Marmont – when our first daughter was born my husband developed anxiety over choosing a name for her. (He is an engineer and his personality type is very routine and ordered with minimal risk taking). He was petrified that we would get her name “wrong” and after many weeks of being unable to reach a decision, which greatly upset me at the time, he made the very out of character decision to impulsively head to Gucci with our baby girl and have me choose a bag as an apology for all of the stress that his indecisiveness had caused! I felt incredibly lucky to receive the bag from him, as well as in the end he decided to go with my number one name choice!
Do you feel like your bags change people’s perceptions of you or how you’re treated? My mum and sister struggle to understand my love of designer bags – neither of them are interested and view me as being outrageously materialistic. So it’s hard not being able to share my passion with the closest women in my life!
Regarding how I’m treated in public, I can’t really say I’ve noticed a change in how I’m treated! And I wear my bags purely because I love them, not for other people.
How often do you buy new bags? I have accrued 10 designer bags in around 4 years, but some years I’ve bought very little and other years around 3-4 bags in the one year. I have 2 preloved bags and 8 brand new. Both of my preloved were in fantastic condition so I don’t love them any less!
Which stores do you frequent the most? Louis Vuitton! I’ve actually yet to go into a Chanel store and very much look forward to once COVID-19 has really passed.
Do you ever buy second-hand bags? Where do you buy used? I have purchased a secondhand Celine in immaculate from Yoogis Closet. I found it to be a really positive experience! And have also purchased secondhand through an online local luxury group which was also fantastic. I prefer to buy my LV bags new, as I like to experience the patina process for myself, but I’m more than happy to buy secondhand otherwise. Particularly for Chanel – with their recent price increases I really don’t see myself ever buying a brand new Chanel.
Do you sell old bags to pay for new purchases? No, I have not sold any of my designer purchases so far. I don’t really impulse buy – I’ve thought carefully about my purchases to date and therefore I love and use all of them.
Do you ever feel societal pressure to purchase more bags? Not societal pressure whatsoever, but definitely social media creates an allusion of an alternate reality where it can suddenly seem normal to be buying luxury goods every few weeks. This is scary to me and I need to be careful to keep my wits about me and realise that for me and my lifestyle this is excessive. I think my ultimate would be collecting a new bag once a year.
Do you consider your bag purchases investments? No, I buy bags that I absolutely love to wear and use frequently. And I hope to wear them for many years to come.
Who influences your buying decisions? I’m definitely influenced by images on Instagram – but ultimately I will only buy bags that will work for my lifestyle and will suit my body and general aesthetic. For example I love seeing classic flaps on celebrities, but I recognised that I’d be a little self conscious wearing one myself and that I was much better suited to the more subtle reissue. It was such a good decision because the reissue is definitely more “me” and I will get a lot more wear out of it as a result.
Are sales associate relationships instrumental to your shopping? Not at all! I’ve made the majority of my purchases online.
Why do you enjoy shopping, beyond just acquiring something new? There is something about bags that I find hard to put into words – I have very little interest in designer clothes or shoes, but I’m just so enamoured by bags and how they can make or break (to me) someone’s overall look. I love everything about bags – the way they feel, smell, the way they make me feel “complete” when I walk out of the door – they even make me happy sitting on my shelves in their dust bags!!!
Have you ever felt like you received inferior service at a store or boutique due to your appearance, ethnicity or gender? I honestly haven’t made enough purchases in a boutique to be able to answer this one. I’ll see how I go next time I visit a Chanel boutique!!
Who pays for your bags? Me!! Aside from the Gucci my husband purchased.
Do you set aside a budget for your bag purchases? I have savings that I will dip into when I come across a perfect bag purchase for me, but I don’t have a specific bag budget per say.
The Taboo Topics
Have you ever purchased a counterfeit because you couldn’t afford a designer item? Yes – when I was very young, a student, and absolutely obsessed with the LV speedy I purchased a super fake for around $150. Of course I have since gotten rid of that and purchased the real deal and I would never ever consider buying a replica now.
Do you ever hide purchases from your significant other? I’m really sad to say that yes, I do. My husband is by nature quite an extreme minimalist who doesn’t really gain pleasure from “consumption” as he calls it. He gets his happiness from the outdoors and from spending quality time together as a family. He is a lifelong saver who is incredibly careful with his money.
He appreciates the quality and history of luxury goods but does not understand the idea of collecting.
He currently is not aware of two of my bags and this is hard as I’d love to be wearing them in front of him.
This is an issue that I will need to address down the track for the sake of our marriage – it’s not right for me to hide purchases from him and it’s also important that he comes around and learns to support my passion (within reason). I plan on addressing this once our children are a little older and I’m back at work. Until then I will not be buying anymore bags.
What’s the craziest thing you’ve done to afford a bag? I have always had the savings to be able to purchase my bags, so nothing crazy in that sense! But I would say the craziest thing in relation to my bag purchasing is the secrecy and hiding them from my husband!!
Do you think your shopping is ever a problem? Have you ever felt like you were struggling with a shopping addiction? Yes and no – when I purchased my Chanel I was equal parts ecstatic and also horrified that I’d spent so many thousands on a bag. This is something I will probably struggle with on and off down the track. Reconciling my love of luxury bags with the ludicrous cost!!
The Rest Of It
Any other expensive hobbies or passions? I’m happy to say, no!!!
Anything else you would like to include? I love that there is a community of people who are able to share and understand their love and passion of bags with each other. I have one girlfriend who luckily understands but aside from that no one close to me in my life can relate, so having an online community I can share my passion with is the best!!