From handbag maximalism to minimalism?

Catherine1288

Member
Dec 15, 2019
39
39
I know I'm not alone here when I say that owning an excess of extremely expensive designer bags makes me anxious and stressed.

For some reason, I'm ok with excessive amounts of shoes, coats, dresses etc. but I like my handbag collection to remain as minimal and functional as possible.

The problem is that I'm attracted to so many beautiful bag designs! I love every bag I own and keep them out on display as they're so stunning to look at but in all honestly I have too many for my comfort level. I actually feel anxious! Moreso for the number that I own than the tens of thousands of dollars spent. I own 10 which, for many, is a modest little collection. I'd like to halve that number or at least cut it back to 7 or 8. Also, I still l have at least one bag on my wishlist! Does the wishlist ever end?!

My dilemna is that i I genuinely love all the bags I own. But some well considered forever bags which I genuinely adore are not getting the wear they deserve. I tend to wear the bags I love least in order to "preserve" the truly ultra special ones.

How do other people battle excess induced anxiety? I'm going nuts debating with myself over which bags to sell but I do genuinely love them all.

Should I try "hiding" some? It might relieve the anxiety of too much choice. Out of sight, out of mind?

I know variety is the spice of life but just wondering if anyone else prefers a more minimalist collection and if anyone feels overhwhelmed by too much choice?

Help! I can't bring myself to sell but can't deal with so much choice.
Xxxx
 

jasmynh1

Member
Feb 18, 2016
438
951
United Kingdom
I was having this EXACT same problem, it started last week!!

I was really trying to narrow down what I need and don't need in my collection, then I realised I really didn't need any of them - but it makes me happy to know that I have different bags for different occasions. I have now decided that I only need two bags in each of these categories: work/everyday tote bags, smaller weekend/day out bags and evening bags.

I've been listing things for sale on Vestiaire Collective, and while it does make me anxious to let go of bags, I know that having this set number of bags will make it easier to choose a bag when I need to. 'Hiding' them for me wouldn't be beneficial because I would feel as if I am 'wasting' the bag in a way.

Another system I go by is one in one out, so I don't feel guilty if I buy a new bag, as long as I know I am going to or already have gotten rid of one.

Hope this helps! x
 

Catherine1288

Member
Dec 15, 2019
39
39
I was having this EXACT same problem, it started last week!!

I was really trying to narrow down what I need and don't need in my collection, then I realised I really didn't need any of them - but it makes me happy to know that I have different bags for different occasions. I have now decided that I only need two bags in each of these categories: work/everyday tote bags, smaller weekend/day out bags and evening bags.

I've been listing things for sale on Vestiaire Collective, and while it does make me anxious to let go of bags, I know that having this set number of bags will make it easier to choose a bag when I need to. 'Hiding' them for me wouldn't be beneficial because I would feel as if I am 'wasting' the bag in a way.

Another system I go by is one in one out, so I don't feel guilty if I buy a new bag, as long as I know I am going to or already have gotten rid of one.

Hope this helps! x
Thank you!! That was really helpful! I agree - "hiding them" won't really help because I'll still know I have them and it would be a waste not to use them. Also a bit sad to keep them locked up when they're so beautiful.

I keep thinking "keep what you have because you're aiming to buy no more bags in future. You already have an incredible collection where you love every piece".

The one in - one out rule is a goodie.
I'm glad other people have this 'issue' (first world guilty problem, I know!) because I'm starting to feel neurotic.

Curious to know... what questions do you ask yourself before selling a piece?

I'm torn between selling my Gucci Dionysus which I love for practicality reasons and my red Fendi peekaboo which I love for its striking colour.
I'm really keen to add a Fendi peekaboo in black though in a more structured leather (which is what I wanted all along but I let a sales assistant talk me into the red) You know when you shop for purpose but someone convinces you to go with the more "exciting" option. Lol.

First world problems again.

IMG_3534.jpg
 
  • Like
Reactions: pquiles

jasmynh1

Member
Feb 18, 2016
438
951
United Kingdom
Thank you!! That was really helpful! I agree - "hiding them" won't really help because I'll still know I have them and it would be a waste not to use them. Also a bit sad to keep them locked up when they're so beautiful.

I keep thinking "keep what you have because you're aiming to buy no more bags in future. You already have an incredible collection where you love every piece".

The one in - one out rule is a goodie.
I'm glad other people have this 'issue' (first world guilty problem, I know!) because I'm starting to feel neurotic.

Curious to know... what questions do you ask yourself before selling a piece?

I'm torn between selling my Gucci Dionysus which I love for practicality reasons and my red Fendi peekaboo which I love for its striking colour.
I'm really keen to add a Fendi peekaboo in black though in a more structured leather (which is what I wanted all along but I let a sales assistant talk me into the red) You know when you shop for purpose but someone convinces you to go with the more "exciting" option. Lol.

First world problems again.

View attachment 4821134
Gorgeous bags! I love the Dionysus and the Fendi is absolutely gorgeous, but I feel you may get more wear out of a black or another neutral? The Peekaboo is such a classic shape that if you had it in a taupe, brown, black, etc. then it would be so easy to wear with any outfit.

I tend to sell a piece if its too trendy or if I am just not using it, as I like my collection to be quite classic and well-rotated. So I ask myself: Is this something I will always want to wear? Is this something that I never use? Would I prefer to put the money towards something else? I tend to feel guilty spending on new bags when I already have bags that I never use :biggrin: If I haven't used a bag for 4/5 months and it has no real sentimental value, then I just sell it. x
 
  • Like
Reactions: jxwilliams

Catherine1288

Member
Dec 15, 2019
39
39
Gorgeous bags! I love the Dionysus and the Fendi is absolutely gorgeous, but I feel you may get more wear out of a black or another neutral? The Peekaboo is such a classic shape that if you had it in a taupe, brown, black, etc. then it would be so easy to wear with any outfit.

I tend to sell a piece if its too trendy or if I am just not using it, as I like my collection to be quite classic and well-rotated. So I ask myself: Is this something I will always want to wear? Is this something that I never use? Would I prefer to put the money towards something else? I tend to feel guilty spending on new bags when I already have bags that I never use :biggrin: If I haven't used a bag for 4/5 months and it has no real sentimental value, then I just sell it. x
Really good questions!! I'm going to try my best to minimise! Thank you, you've been soooooo helpful tonight. Xx
 
  • Like
Reactions: jasmynh1

pquiles

O.G.
Jun 28, 2006
7,740
259
52
Fort Hood, TX
Thank you!! That was really helpful! I agree - "hiding them" won't really help because I'll still know I have them and it would be a waste not to use them. Also a bit sad to keep them locked up when they're so beautiful.

I keep thinking "keep what you have because you're aiming to buy no more bags in future. You already have an incredible collection where you love every piece".

The one in - one out rule is a goodie.
I'm glad other people have this 'issue' (first world guilty problem, I know!) because I'm starting to feel neurotic.

Curious to know... what questions do you ask yourself before selling a piece?

I'm torn between selling my Gucci Dionysus which I love for practicality reasons and my red Fendi peekaboo which I love for its striking colour.
I'm really keen to add a Fendi peekaboo in black though in a more structured leather (which is what I wanted all along but I let a sales assistant talk me into the red) You know when you shop for purpose but someone convinces you to go with the more "exciting" option. Lol.

First world problems again.

View attachment 4821134
These are absolutely timeless and gorgeous! Love them both... for real!
 

Amazona

Crazy bird lady
Mar 31, 2013
2,885
2,693
Finland
I'm really trying to become a minimalist! I used to be a "more is more" type of person. Now I'm selling all the bags that don't make me happy just by existing - and that's alot! I had a bag that I passionately loved but I still sold it recently. It was too expensive and I didn't wear it enough to justify it's presence in my life.
If you get anxious because of the amount of bags you have, I'd recommend either using all of the bags or, to ease your mind, sell them. Another choice is to regard them as pieces of art you can also wear.
 

catsinthebag

adopt a shelter pet!
O.G.
Sep 7, 2010
6,782
9,995
Boston Strong!
It seems to me that your anxiety isn’t coming from the number of bags so much as the fact that you have several bags that aren’t being worn. So for a first step, I’d try wearing each neglected bag for a few days or a week, in order to really determine why you’re not using them. For example, if you wear the red Fendi for a few days, you may find that it just feels like a special occasion bag rather than an everyday bag. Or you may find that the bag works, but the color doesn’t. OR, you may find that once you start using it, you realize the bag style itself isn’t functional for you (this was my issue with the Peekaboo). You can’t really know which it is unless you really use the bag. It doesn’t make sense to sell the red and get a black if the bag itself doesn’t function the way you want.

So, I’d make a point of wearing each one and really giving a shot and seeing how you feel about it. These things exist to be USED, in some way or another. Not every bag can be an everyday bag. It’s OK to have one or two that don’t get used a lot but fit very specific needs. The problem is when we convince ourselves that that super “special” bag will be an everyday bag — then we are just fooling ourselves!

The other thing I wanted to say is that life isn’t normal for most of us right now due to the pandemic. It’s really hard to know what we will and won’t use when life becomes more normal again. Even “normal” won’t be exactly like the old normal, IFKWIM. It’s OK to not decide right now, to just sit tight and see where things stand in a few months or a year. HTH.
 

Catherine1288

Member
Dec 15, 2019
39
39
Thanks for everyone's feedback. Really helpful! True! I live in Melbourne and we're in the middle of a stage 4 lock down. No one's been able to go out properly since early March so in all honestly I'm not getting much use out of any bags this year! I'm sure most of us can relate.
I'm just looking at these beauties every day and thinking "I have too many stunning handbags to know what to do with them all!"

I'm going to write a pros/cons list of those least adored bags and sit on them. Since I'm obviously reluctant to sell any I think I need to give them some real time and use and that can only happen once we're able to actually go out again and do "normal things".

Thanks for everyone's advice. Xxxx
 

ay07

New Member
Jan 8, 2020
2
1
When I first started collecting my contemporary deginer bags, I was able to learn a few things about my tastes and preferences. I purchased 3 tote/work bags. One a brown saffiano tote, grey saffiano tote and a black pebbled leather tote. At the end of four years, the black one was the only one I was using.

I also purchased a few crossbody bags. A grey double zip crossbody with silver hardware, a black saffiano crossbody with gold hardware, brown pebbled leather crossbody with silver hardware, a dark blue double zip saffiano crossbody with gold hardware. Out of all of these, I only used the black and blue because of how they matched my wardrobe and their convenience. The others are also very beautiful but the silver hardware turns out does not match my wardrobe.

Basically, I learned that having a variety for me was not important because I tend to gravitate towards 2 or 3 bags at most.

So when I started my luxury bag collection I knew exactly what I was looking for. I also knew that I didn't want to have a big collection, I only needed 4 or at most 5 bags.

The first bag I got was the alma bb in damier ebene. It goes beautifully with my formal and casual outfits, works well handheld as well as shoulder or crossbody. Second one I got was the pochette metis in monogram canvas. The last one I purchased was the Chanel small classic flap in caviar with gold hardware. These three are working out great for me. I love them all and they suit my wardrobe and my lifestyle quite well.

What I need advise on now is what to purchase next. I have a budget of roughly $5000. After this, I will sit on a no buy pact for the next 3 years and use the bags I have. I really want a black crossbody that's comfortable for every day use and can be dressed up or down. The three bags on my radar are the ysl toy loulou in black with gold hardware, the Coco handle in nude with gold. I can purchase these both within my budget and have the additional nude bags with the black every day crossbody. I also love the black Chanel 19 in the smallest size which is equivalent to the price of the Coco handle + toy loulou.
I am also more of a practical person. All the bags I've purchased, are classics. They have great resale value and won't go out of fashion. I would like to stick to those lines.

I don't know what to do! Can you guys help me decide
 
  • Like
Reactions: daisychainz

Catherine1288

Member
Dec 15, 2019
39
39
Hmmm great choices! Since you're keen to add a black cross-body I'd be opting for either the LouLou or the Chanel 19.
Personally, I think the LouLou is a bit more understated and could be dressed up or down.

The Chanel 19, while beautiful, somehow seems more dressy to me and I'd be more inclined to wear it as a top handle. Although I could see it being rocked cross-body. I think the hardware also gives off the "dressier" vibe.

I suppose the other major factor is the price difference between the YSL and the Chanel! There's a huge difference and if you're concerned by resale value then the Chanel is something to at least be considered.

If possible, I'd visit the bags in the boutique, get a feel for them in person and take heaps of photos. Good luck!
 

Mairaculi

Member
Sep 9, 2020
73
172
Love this discussion! I never considered myself a handbag maximalist, but before I got into the quality-over-quantity mindset, I had over 20 bags, not the cheapest fast fashion stuff, but none of them designer or most of them not high-quality, yet I always wore the same ones. They were in good condition and I donated most of them to my local thrift store, I could've made some money selling them, but donating is less work and supporting a good cause at the same time.
Now my goal is to keep my collection always at or below 10 (handbags, so not counting my suitcase, weekender or gym bag) and to buy high quality and preferably preloved. I currently own 7 bags (4 backpacks, 2 totes, 1 going out bag) and I'm looking for a good small to medium-sized everyday black crossbody bag (high quality but understated). I already let go of mine before replacing, and I really miss the this type of bag.

For me the ideal collection would be 8 handbags:
-2 totes (1 black, 1 color/light neutral), for work and errands
-3 backpacks (1 black, 1 color/light neutral, 1 functional canvas)
-1 everyday crossbody bag (black)
-1 dressy shoulder bag/top handle with shoulder strap (color/light neutral)
-1 evening bag/clutch with chain (black)
Let me know what you think!
 
  • Like
Reactions: jasmynh1