Anyone who collects anything knows what it feels like to have a few regrets throughout your collecting journey. Sometimes it’s that one particularly wonderful piece you let slip through your fingers, regretting it for years afterward, and other times its a pang of guilt when you purchased something you really thought you wanted, only to find the feelings after actually acquiring it less than satisfactory. This goes for collectors of all things — antiques, coins, or, of course, handbags.

To Sell or Not to Sell

There comes a time in most collector’s journey where selling becomes a topic of contention. Maybe it’s a constant argument you have with yourself, or maybe it comes from a roommate or a partner who believes “you have way too many bags!” Wherever it comes from, the desire (or lack thereof) to sell is one that most collectors will face at one time or another. Choosing to sell a bag can be a huge source of regret down the line, and choosing to sell a bag is a decision that should definitely be well-thought-out and not rushed.

Personally, I’ve never regretted selling a bag. Sure, I have missed some bags from time to time, but it was more missing the time in my life when I loved (and used) those bags. I’ve only sold bags that I really wasn’t reaching for anymore, so thankfully, I don’t regret anything I’ve sold…yet! And I hope I never do.

To Buy or Not to Buy

My sources of handbag regrets typically come from the things I didn’t actually buy, no matter how smart the decision was. I also know many collectors who have purchased bags on a whim and found that they didn’t actually like them all that much. While selling is always an option, if it’s a bag that’s value has depreciated greatly, it can cause a fair amount of anguish and regret.

But sometimes, we come across the right bag at the wrong time, and those are the regrets that pain me the most. I still wish I had gotten a Louis Vuitton x Stephen Sprouse bag from the Marc by Marc Jacobs era, and I will forever be searching for a pristine one at a fair price, but one of my biggest, if not the biggest, handbag regrets I have was passing up the deals at a tiny consignment shop in Paris when I studied abroad. Those vintage Chanel bags still haunt me to this day — nearly 13 years later.

So tell me, what’s your biggest handbag regret?

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Kate
Kate
25 days ago

Several years ago, my husband purchased a small vintage Chanel classic flap in black lambskin with plated gold hardware, as a surprise gift for me. The size was not common at the time, and I thought I would be unlikely to use it. Despite the fact that it was in pristine condition – the quilts had not flattened out, and even the hardware hardly had a scratch – I just had a bias against vintage bags. He paid $3,400 for it, and I thought that was outrageous for such an “old” bag. I told him thank you for the thoughtful gift but that we could better spend the money elsewhere. He asked me “Are you sure?” about ten times before finally returning it. I now carry much smaller bags that I did back then, and just this weekend I was trying on a small Chanel classic flap and have decided that I’m definitely purchasing one soon, though I didn’t like the color that was available at the boutique and haven’t yet pulled the trigger. I’m holding out for – yes – black lambskin with gold hardware, pretty much the same bag I declared I would “never” use a few years ago.
When I think of how much I’m going to spend on this bag, I almost weep at the memory of the one I stupidly rejected.

Roseanne
Roseanne
25 days ago

I was pushing two babies in a double stroller through Saks when a Chanel saleswoman showed me a black classic flap $1,500, I thought I would be carrying diaper bags forever and told her thank you but no thank you. That same bag is now $8,800. Should have purchased it and put it away. Those babies are now in their 20s 🙁

Gayle
Gayle
24 days ago
Reply to  Roseanne

Same experience. When i went to paris in 2010 the medium flap was only less than 2000euros. I wanted a pink one my favorite color but only black was available to purchase in the rue de cambon store so i passed up. Its the biggest regret of my life (more than not graduating college with honors i was 0.4 points short haha) Ive sold more than 30 bags in my 15yrs of collecting bags and ive never regretted any one of my bags that ive sold.

ILP
ILP
25 days ago

My regrets involve buying large bags as I carry less and less these days. (I wish I had gotten the small YSL Lou Lou instead of the medium. I also have the large Ferragamo Margot that I wish were the smaller version.) I adore both bags except for the size. I have never sold anything online before. Maybe I should look into it as my bags are babied and look like they’re new.

Sara Sara
Sara Sara
25 days ago

I regret selling my Stephen Sprouse pieces too cheap to a reseller. I also regret selling my Hermes Kelly Cut in Griolet for a song (though I also bought it for a song)! It was purchased on Fashionphile by one of the writers here. She wrote a blog post about it. At least it went to a good home!
The more I think about it, I regret all the Hermes bags I sold during a closet purge!

Sam
Sam
24 days ago
Reply to  Sara Sara

I remember that post because I thought the Hermes bag was beautiful! I have Hermes regrets as well after I sold my Birkin SO. 😟

ladyet
ladyet
25 days ago

I don’t think I have any bag regrets, other than not having enough discretionary $ to indulge in super expensive luxury items before they reached a non-justifiable price range. That’s not really a regret though.

I do regret not buying all the prehistoric beast bag charms during Coach’s 2016 Holiday Collection, though. As a broke graduate student, they were too much money for me at the time ($150/charm), I couldn’t justify spending over $600 on keychains. Now they’re basically impossible to find.

Fabuleux
Fabuleux
25 days ago

Not buying the Louis Vuitton x Rei Kawakubo tote.

FashionableLena
FashionableLena
25 days ago

My biggest handbag regret was not buying a Dior Saddle bag when they were out-of-style. Now, I really can’t afford it.
Another handbag regret is buying black handbags. I don’t like the color so I don’t know why I bought them. With exception of some clutches, I gave them all away.

Geraldine Vance
Geraldine Vance
25 days ago

I am impetuous by nature. So have fallen for bags quickly and later wondered what I was thinking: the Burberry belt bag, the Diorever bag to name a couple. Selling always means a loss. So trying harder to pass on the seasonal offerings.

Leila
Leila
25 days ago

My biggest regret would be buying so many bags from smaller (and cheaper) brands. I think the biggest appeal of them was that I could afford multiples and not everybody had them, and some I wore to death, but some are just staying in my closet for the most part. I wouldn’t sell them because I would basically not even get the shipping costs out of it and they are leather and I like them, but since I don’t wear them that much it was kind of a waste buying them. I wonder which bags I could afford now if I had saved all that money instead. I guess it’s the same as with luxury brands, really think twice if you’re buying into a trend or will you actually use them for years and years to come? I’d recommend buying only a few cheaper but sturdy and versatile bags that you can wear for a while, and then safe for the big purchases, because let’s be honest: just because we have a closet full of cheaper bags doesn’t mean the luxury ones don’t appeal to us!

Janet
Janet
23 days ago
Reply to  Leila

I have another point of view. I have an extensive extensive contemporary bag collection. I have a few high end designer pieces. Day to day I grab my contemporary bags. I have so many colors and styles that I can always find the perfect one for an outfit. I don’t have to worry and baby them like my very high ends ones. I don’t feel guilty over the money spent. If I need to live I can simple gove away to a friend or family member and they will be thrilled.

Michael
Michael
24 days ago

Regret selling my black Balenciaga Weekender with silver hardware bag.

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