Saturday, 30 April 2011

How to Care for Your Designer Handbag to Make it Last

If you think the economy is killing interest in things like designer handbags and other high-priced fashion goods, think again.  Consumer confidence is starting to rise a bit and more women are buying high-end handbags as that economic uncertainty wanes.

Of course, it’s always the confidence of other people that grows while you sit and wait for the opportunity to come knocking.  Just because others are purchasing new designer handbags doesn’t mean everyone is - and you’re certainly not going to do it every season.  You should still shop in a conservative manner and try to make that handbag last if you want to stretch your buck.

Getting More for That Buck

If you tend to be kind of hard on your personal belongings - especially your handbags - then it might make sense to just make the investment in one of the higher priced designer handbags.  Do you need to buy them brand new and drop $4k on a new purse?  Not if you measure longevity in decades instead of years.  You can always go for a gently used designer handbag that still has plenty of life in it for a fraction of the cost.

If you do buy a new handbag though, most of the designers will repair your bag for free within a certain amount of time.  Other boutiques offer specialty repair services to help keep your older designer handbag in shape with stitches finally start to lose strength or leather wears down.  If you want to make sure your handbag lasts without the need for a repair visit or investment then you have to know how to take care of what you’re carrying.

Caring for your Handbag

If you want your handbag to last then you need to treat it well - common sense.  Take time on a regular basis, at least once a week, to empty your bag completely.  Shake it out upside down to get everything out and clean out the lining with a lint roller.

Cleaning the outside of your handbag is just as important but you should only do so with a special cleansing solution.  You shouldn’t try to use soap or harsh cleaners on a handbag made from leather, suede or even cloth.  Before cleaning, check with the designer to find out if there are recommended cleaning products to help care for the handbag.  If you have bad marks or a heavy stain, you may simply need to visit a cleaner.

Loading your Handbag

Believe it or not there’s a proper way to load a purse.  It’s not a trunk where things can be loaded “so they fit”.  If you overstuff your handbag you wind up putting a great deal of stress on the straps.  By keeping your contents light and the bag clutter free, you can protect both the lining (from sharp objects like keys and pens) as well as the zipper (from lint and other specks from getting into it).

Handling your Handbag

You should view every surface as being potentially hazardous to the life of your handbag.  Avoid putting your purse or handbag on the floor - especially in a restaurant or a bathroom.  If there’s a clean surface to rest your purse, use it.  Otherwise use a stall hook or chair back to protect your purse.  You can even buy a purse hook for less than $20 to hang your purse from a table.  This is where it pays to keep your designer used handbags light to avoid stressing the handles.

Thursday, 28 April 2011

Designer Used Handbags – What Size Handbag Should I Carry?

Looking at modern trends in designer used handbags (and new handbags entering the scene) it’s easy to see that large bags and big hobo bags are extremely popular with many women.  This trend has brought many women to a point where they want to purchase one but struggle with the idea of having that much “functional” space on their arm.  Some want to keep with current trends but don’t understand the need for the space – and many would wind up with a bag that’s more than 75% empty if they made the switch.

So are large designer used handbags the right choice to make for you?  The trends say yes, but there are other things you need to consider.  First and foremost, it should be said that there is a benefit to having more than one handbag, and that includes having bags of various sizes.

When you’re considering a new handbag or buying one of many designer used handbags, think about your body scale.  To get a good idea of your scale, measure around your wrist in inches

Small scale: 5.5” or under

Medium scale: 5.5 to 6.5”

Larger scale: More than 6.5”

This is a bit of a general guide because you have to factor in such things as height and weight when it comes to selecting the right types of handbags.  For example a very slim person might look smaller on the scale despite being very tall.  So how does size factor in?

It’s really quite simple:

If you want to reduce the size at which people perceive you and you want to appear smaller then you would opt for carrying a larger handbag.  If you want to increase your size and your profile then you carry a smaller handbag.  Outside of that reasoning you can adjust the size and scale of the handbag based on your own overall scale as well as other factors.

Choosing the Right Designer Used Handbag Based on Purpose

You may not be able to fill out a large handbag but there are times when it can be both convenient and fitting.  Perhaps you’re not the type of woman to carry around a quaint clutch but again – there are numerous occasions where it’s the perfect choice. 

Small Designer Handbags:  These are perfect for special occasions or for evening outings.  They’re also perfect for the small scale woman.  If you regularly limit your necessities a small bag can work for most occasions

Medium Handbags: These tend to be fairly popular because they provide ample room for fair number of women.  The style and design of medium bags lends them to a number of occasions and they fit either the medium frame woman or the small scale woman who wants to appear smaller.

Large Handbags: These handbags offer a great deal of function for many women simply because of the storage capacity.  For many women with a medium build the large handbag provides a big reduction effect.  It suits large scale women very well though popularity has it finding its way into the hands of small scale women as well.  Typically, large handbags are all about making a woman look more petite.

Mixing in Personality when Choosing Designer Used Handbags

When it comes to fashion, style and accessories you always need to consider personality.  More often than not a woman’s’ personality will trump any ‘rule’ in the “Fashion 101” guidebook.  If a petite woman wants and loves a big hobo bag then no matter her scale or the current trend she’s going to carry that hobo bag.  With handbags it’s important to remember that no matter the size you should choose a handbag that compliments your personality as much as your outfit and style.  You’re the one that has to wear it, so choosing designer used handbags that fit you in all aspects – not just in the size.

Tuesday, 26 April 2011

Designer Used Handbags - How Trends Develop & Influence Choice

Fashion is a business where the mission is to jump ahead in order to remain current:  It’s a do or die kind of world where the losers are quickly dropped in favor of the most popular designs - whoever the brand may be.  But how do trends happen?  What makes a trend suddenly “become”?

Trends are considered to be a clever balance of art, commerce and the spirit of a generation.  That spirit can be anything from the moving choice based on the economy to a specific pop star or celebrity preference.  Trends are sparked by new releases in movies, exhibits, technology, pop culture but they’re also greatly influenced by what designers think women might love in their next handbag.

According to Tommy Hilfiger “A trend happens as the result of a natural reaction to the customer's direction. But even though you may see a common trend, I think every designer has a different take on it.”

Most designers believe that in order to produce a really great handbag - one that will be widely accepted and devoured by women upon its reveal - requires that you travel through the world with open eyes and ears so that you are aware of everything around you.  If you properly filter the information in relation to your target audience you’ll left with the essence of what was once loved, what is loved now and what will be loved as the next big trend.

An example of following influence to predict trends is in the explosion of interest in the Japanese anime circuit.  The unique style of graphics and color proved to designers that they could be irreverent with the colors they chose in their designs - even in clothing.  And it worked

From movies to the economy, there are ways to leverage current perceptions and interests.  For example, the angst and the concern of the economy bred interest in turquoise for its soft, restful and protective ambiance seen in many cultures.  To match it in the season, blues became widely popular with the release of the movie Avatar.

Whether you’re talking about designer handbags or clothing, fashion is everywhere - it’s in the sky, it’s in the landscape.  It’s more about ideas than designs because fashion breaks down to how women (And men) live every day.  That’s why designs may go “out of style” but they’re never really gone.

Because fashion is an idea more than anything else, it resonates with people to create living trends that go into hibernation only to return again.  It’s also why used handbags remain popular.  While a trend may go to sleep, the concept and the idea behind a handbag design can live on for several seasons.  Many women jump at the opportunity to cling to a trend or idea and purchase used designer handbags;  it gives them an opportunity to pick up designer used handbags for a fraction of the cost and to embrace the edge of a trend that could potentially make a quick return.

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Choosing the Right Designer Used Handbag for your Body Style

When most women are shopping for a designer used handbag, there’s a good chance they’re not giving it the same kind of scrutiny they give a pair of jeans.  Jeans are critical after all because they highlight the good as well as the bad.  If a designer handbag is cute and it seems to fit your lifestyle then it’s good to go, right?

Unfortunately many woman don’t realize that a handbag is designed to fit your shape and your body just as much as a pair of jeans.  Not only will the right handbag design polish your style to a fine shine but it can also visually knock the pounds off your body and make you appear slimmer.

Focusing on Shapes

When it comes to the shape of the handbag you should go for something that’s a contrast to your current body type.  If you’re someone with a tall, lean figure then you would typically lean more toward a slouchy and well-rounded hobo bag.  For a woman with a short and voluptuous body a longer more rectangular or sleek, small clutch can work wonders on the appearance to compliment the figure

When thinking in terms of shapes, a good way to look at it is that the more round the figure of a woman the more she should focus on a structured bag.  Of course you don’t need to carry around a hard-edged box to counterbalance your womanly shape - you can hit your mark with a nice soft leather that is complimented by rectangular or square silhouettes.

There a lot of popular shapes when it comes to designer handbags - more than just the simple clutches and Hobo bags you see on the circuit.  Popular shapes include open top bags with long straps, tall shoudlerbags with wider openings, flat-top shoulderbags with buckle closures, small and boxy hard bags (cigar box style), and even a small soft pouch that can be easily carried.

Looking at Handbag Scale

While the shape of the handbag should often contrast your figure, the size of the handbag is actually the opposite.  What compliments your figure the most is a bag that’s in proportion to your size and figure.  Think in terms of scale;  a woman that is 5’11” and a size 14 would look out place carrying a small shoulder pouch.  Along the same train of thought, a petite woman wearing a size 1 would look overwhelmed trying to lug around a massive shoulderbag.

Finding the Right Handbag

There are a lot of different style designer handbags to choose from, especially if you don’t just hop on the popular trend and decide to find something else to fit you.  You can simplify the process of choosing from the selection by taking the time try on designer handbags in a store just like you would a pair of jeans.  Use a mirror and see how it looks in comparison to your size and shape.  If you’re buying used designer handbags online, you can still use this method in a retail store to know what you like before buying the cheaper product from an online dealer.

Lastly, avoid being tempted by the trends and what’s popular, especially if they don’t completely suit your figure.  There are a lot of alternatives to the hot trends that are similar in style.  Make sure the handbag you choose fits your lifestyle (because you don’t want to try stuffing diapers into a vintage bag) and you’ll quickly find the designer used handbags that are right for you.

Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Changing Fashion - Fake Handbags Vs Designer Used Handbags

While some may not make the differentiation, there is a huge difference between a replica handbag or other fashion product (shoes, sunglasses, etc.) and a fake handbag.  A replica is a product that carries a similar design, such as a handbag that is made to resemble a certain Prada clutch however that clutch doesn’t pretend to come from Prada.  It’s not carrying that brand logo and isn’t marketed as such.

A fake on the other hand is a blatant attempt to produce a counterfeit.  It’s the process of producing a handbag, a pair of glasses, clothing or other product and placing a designer name on it despite the fact that the item did not originate from that designer.  While there is a big difference between the two, they’re both bad.

Both products hurt the fashion industry, so much so that other countries are fighting back and take the counterfeiting as seriously as someone making fake money.  France is one example of a country that completely understands the harm these black-market fakes are causing the major brands - as well as the consumer that spends hard-earned money on a cheap knock-off.

In France, buying or carrying a counterfeit product (fashion accessory or otherwise) is a criminal offense and it’s punishable by up to 3 years imprisonment along with a hefty fine of 300 000.  Note that it doesn’t just target those who make or sell the products, but those carrying them as well.  That’s why it’s important to know what you’re buying - especially if you purchase designer used handbags.

While the movement hasn’t taken hold in other parts of the world, French lawmakers want to help protect the intellectual property of designers and they’re trying to stretch their reach onto the web.  They’ve long developed a charter among companies to help keep fake products off the web.  It’s a measure to standardize the way luxury labels, apparel, designers and pharmaceutical companies cooperate with the ecommerce sites in an effort to do away with counterfeit products.

While the coverage is isolated to France for the most part, there’s nothing that says other countries and governments could follow suit in order to levy heavy fines on offenders.  Enforcement could even be a lucrative business for governments depending on how well they reinforced their own laws.  France is taking it to strict levels, as they don’t just target the counterfeiting companies.  If you’re a buyer, you can take a hit as well.  Those who are caught pirating music and software online are denied the ability to access the internet.

This kind of forward thinking has us moving in the right direction but truthfully it won’t take hold until people stop seeking out fakes in the first place.  More often than not it’s just a matter of getting something that looks real for a fraction of the cost.  If people took the time to research the products they love, they would see that many can be purchased used that are designer labels and real products, like designer used handbags.  Ditch the desire for fakes or replicas and shop smart for designer used handbags that last.