Brands like Chanel continue to bet big on iconic, classic designs with proven staying power. Their Classic Flap and 2.55 Reissue bags have been around for decades. Chanel’s constant investment in remarketing these bags has led to a continued (and growing) demand for these evergreens, allowing Chanel to command ever-increasing prices. This is good news for those who buy these bags since they will have a high resale value should their owners change their minds.

But what if you don’t like these styles? What if your true heart’s desire is a seasonal bag, but the resale value is much lower?

We Can’t Buy Them All

If money were no object, then buy whatever bag you want. Unfortunately, most of us can’t buy everything we want. So we have to budget, and our budget may allow for one nice bag every once in a while. Since these bags don’t come cheap, we may engage in a decision process where we weigh the pros and cons of various bags to eventually decide on one. One of the biggest factors that some people consider is a bag’s resale value. This has meant that evergreen staples like the Chanel Mini Flap end up on the list of bags to buy due to their high resale value…

…even if one doesn’t truly love the bag.

Chanel Mini Flap

Buy What You Love

On the PurseForum, several threads begin with the decision-making process between bags with higher resale value versus more seasonal styles. On the Dior forum, there are often threads about buying a 30 Montaigne or a Bobby Bag where women are wondering if they should get the Lady Dior instead since the Lady Dior is permanent and has a higher resale value. They actually fell in love with the 30 Montaigne first but think it may be better to buy the Lady Dior for longevity and a higher resale price.

In these cases, I suggest buying what you fell in love with. Why should you settle for something else?

Dior Bobby Bag

What About Resale Value?

Yes, choosing the seasonal bag you love may mean that you will lose a lot of money if you choose to sell the bag down the road. But have you considered this: That you would have at least enjoyed the bag a lot more if and when you choose to part with it? It’s almost like marriage (I’m being extreme with this example) where someone marries a person that checks off all the right boxes (like good finances, is committed, caring, honest, etc.) but isn’t actually in love with them. Besides, if you get the bag with the higher resale value that you don’t love as much, then you may still keep thinking about that seasonal bag that you now missed out on.

Our Tastes Change

If we love a seasonal bag that likely has a low resale value, it runs the risk of looking dated (because it is likely in a bag design that will not be renewed the next season). But that is okay. The fashion industry caters to a very human trait: we get bored with what we have and look for the next new thing. That’s why designers make new collections each season. That’s also one of the reasons why so many bags end up on the resale market. We just get bored with them, even with the most “classic” pieces.

I know that this may mean that we should buy what has a high resale value instead of what we love since many of us are doomed to part with our bags anyway. We might as well get more money out of the process. But I don’t think you would be as happy with that bag. Aren’t we buying what makes us happy, after all? If money is what you’re after, then I wouldn’t be spending money on bags if I were you because there are far better investments out there with far greater returns.

You may get bored with the seasonal bag you fell in love with years down the road. But at least you enjoyed it thoroughly before you chose to part with it. I think it is far better than buying a bag that you are lukewarm about and never truly feeling what it is like to get the bag that your heart desires.

Think of the much lower resale value as the cost of happiness. I would rather pay for that than buy a bag I don’t truly like.

Dior 30 Montaigne

What I’ve Learned From Collecting

Almost none of my own bags have high resale value. I usually buy what I love. I know that a lot of Hermès and Louis Vuitton men’s bags have a much higher resale value than the bags I own, but I don’t love them. I simply can’t get a bag with a high resale value that I don’t love, even if it costs me when I sell them. I have parted ways with several bags because my tastes have changed. Bags that I obsessed about initially, like the Givenchy Nightingale messenger and the Fendi Monster Backpack, were sold with huge losses (I often lost 80% of what I paid). Of course, I wanted more money back, but I know why I bought them. I truly loved them and enjoyed them thoroughly before eventually falling out of love with them and parting ways. To me, that is worth the low resale value.

It is also through getting what I love that I still have some bags from when I first started buying designer bags over 14 years ago. I’ll never part with my soft leather Prada briefcase, still one of my favorite bags in my entire collection. I was deciding between it and an Epi leather Louis Vuitton bag with a much higher resale value than this Prada. Still, I’m glad I chose the Prada.

So the next time a new bag catches your eye, and you fall head over heels for it, then get it as your next bag. Who cares if the resale value is low! If everyone only got the bags with high resale value (and there are very few of them), then our bag sightings would get pretty boring.

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Thefashionableteacher
Thefashionableteacher
6 months ago

AMEN! I always buy the bags that I love. Resale value never enters into my mind. As a secondhand shopper, I’m looking for a deal which means less than retail. I’m sure a lot of others do as well as getting the one that got away.

Life is too short to spend exorbitant amounts of money on anything that you don’t love. If you don’t love it, you won’t use it which equals a waste of money. Investment doesn’t always have to equate with getting your money back. It can also mean that I bought something that I love and use it often. Therefore, it’s a good investment.

Tai
Tai
6 months ago

This.

Personally I think it’s wiser to buy a bag you love that you anticipate you’ll still love 10 years down the road, regardless of how much it’ll sell for. I know some folks’ tastes change frequently, and for them I say do what works. But for myself, I’ve had a similar aesthetic for the last 15 years so it’s a bit easier to anticipate if I’ll still love something long-term.

That said part of me does kick myself for
not buying a Chanel flap on the 2000’s when it was “just $3K”, but honestly – it just didn’t work for me.

Buy what makes your heart sing! Regardless of resale or what others’ opinions are!

Gayle
Gayle
6 months ago
Reply to  Tai

Im lucky i only fall in love with classic styles these days but when i was younger i tried the trends which eventually did not work for me now so i sold them. Same experience with the chanel classic flap. Was only less than 2000 euros in 2010 when i was in paris. I did not buy because all they had in store was black and i was looking for pink my favorite color. Biggest regret of my life. 5years ago i bought a vintage single flap for less than $1000. Plus i spent $250 bringing it to the bag spa. Maybe it makes up a little makes me feel a little better from my biggest regret.

Julia
Julia
6 months ago

I’m a buy and rarely sell kind of woman. I like what I like, I buy it and I’ll only sell it if I see that it really really doesn’t work with my style (sold a bunch of coach, BCBG, bags I used as a teen, and Lacoste bags during covid).

I don’t think we should be selling our bags in general though. We buy it because we love it and use it until they’re no longer useable.most of us aren’t blogger and faux-stagrammers and most people don’t even own more than 30 bags… why is everyone obsessed with selling a piece of history?!?!?

Amazona
Amazona
6 months ago

A good resale value is not something I spend alot of time thinking about. It’s just an added bonus if I fall in love with a bag. I often buy preloved so the biggest drop in the value has already happened beforehand.
If I lose money selling the bag I usually take it as cost for the fact that I’ve used the bag and enjoyed it.

Gucci Exquisite