Help! Just received bag... not sure if I'm happy (warning: Picture heavy!!)

annaes

Member
Jun 26, 2008
175
2
NY
Hi ladies! :smile: I'm relatively new to both TPF and the Balenciaga forum in particular, but thought I would post for some advice. So, I just received an authentic gray 06 city from a seller on ebay and the color is faded and quite a bit more worn than expected. I'm not looking to open a dispute with the seller, she has been wonderful, and offered a return with a full refund in the next 7 days (plus I got the bag for an absolute STEAL!), but I just want to know if this is normal wear for an 06 bag.

The sealant is majorly cracking by the main zipper and the leather is scuffed off the edges at the front bottom corners. The handles have warmed, but that's pretty normal, right? Tassles aren't split, which is nice, but she provided the extras in any event. The leather overall is a bit dirty. I took it to a professional leather repair store nearby (who just happens to work on Balenciagas for Saks on a regular basis) and they said the leather is too fragile from wear and tear and can't be cleaned except by shipping it off to LMB. The LMB luxury cleanser plus (which I took to show the guy at the leather repair store), he said, will just darken the bag at this point since it is essentially unfinished leather (all the finish is worn off). However, I'm one of those who LOVES the smooshy worn look of leather on some Balenciagas, and this one is definitely not smooth, which is great for me, so I'm reluctant to give it up!

So, what do you think? Is this acceptable/normal wear, or would you return it and keep looking and hope to find another great deal?
(sorry for the huge photos, they refused to upload as attachments!)








^^^ For color comparison ^^^^





 

pookster

Member
Jun 21, 2009
34
0
I love this color, but wow, that is too much wear for me. It is just too worn out for me and too used for me to enjoy. But that is only my opinion and my preference. I would have to return this one.
 

meganka

O.G.
Nov 5, 2006
1,788
8
Hong Kong
first of all, congratsss on getting this gorgeous leather city at a great deal!
this looks like a greige to me!
the back of the leather looks so thick & softtttt
i think it is normal if the previous owner has used the bag heavily...
i would suggest you to ask for a quote from LMB, if you are comfortable with it, then i will keep the bag and have it sent to LMB...
if you think the price is too high, i would suggest for a return.
 

MichK

Member
Nov 1, 2008
3,786
11
^^ Yup, I'm with Meganka... since you got this bag for a steal, you might be able to afford a clean-up session at LMB. I wouldn't keep the bag in its current condition - it's just a bit too dirty for me - even though I love how floppy and smooshy it is. I would get it cleaned up, if I could, or I'd send it back. Sweet of the seller to offer that!
 

*Heather*

TIME OUT
Aug 9, 2009
761
0
Back and forth...
Is that the one that went for $511.00? I was watching that auction. I thought those handles looked a little too icky (but I'm a little OCD about that!), but for that price, it may be worth a trip to LMB. Good luck!
 

annaes

Member
Jun 26, 2008
175
2
NY
Is that the one that went for $511.00? I was watching that auction. I thought those handles looked a little too icky (but I'm a little OCD about that!), but for that price, it may be worth a trip to LMB. Good luck!

Yes it was!! :yahoo: I was in Las Vegas and bid really quickly before going out to lunch, and when I got back to my computer I couldn't believe I had won for such a low price!

Thank you everyone for your input! I will definitely get a quote from LMB.
Just one more question: If the leather is faded and you add moisturizer, will it darken up a little, or no? I don't want to mess with this bag yet myself if I'm still considering returning it :P
 

Conni618

Authenticator
O.G.
Mar 27, 2007
11,079
494
If you love the leather, I'd get an estimate from LMB. Send them lots of photos of the parts that bother you, be clear about what you want improved, and see what they say. Be specific about whether you want the bag to be dyed.

You can make a decision about keeping it or not, once you get an idea of what is possible, and also how much it will cost to restore it.
 

*Heather*

TIME OUT
Aug 9, 2009
761
0
Back and forth...
I don't think I've ever seen a B-bag go for such a steal! Congrats! But see what LMB charges to clean it up. I wouldn't re-dye it and ruin that gorgeous leather.

And wouldn't it be nice to order replacement handles from Balenciaga?
 

annaes

Member
Jun 26, 2008
175
2
NY
^^^^ I know! It was such a find!

And yes, I would LOVE to just order replacement handles! :graucho:
 

pilatesworks

aka : Leslie
O.G.
Dec 21, 2008
8,101
38
63
Austin , Tx
I think you should not touch the bag yourself!
Bear in mind that LMB is quite expensive....check out their website.
They are true miracle workers, I have sent many bags to them , but it will take time and money to get that bag back in shape!
Good luck!
 

slinks

Balcontent
O.G.
Jul 17, 2006
3,672
32
For a used bag, there's really no such thing as a "normal" amount of wear - it depends on what you're comfortable with. Light colors do show wear more. 2006 Greige has consistently great leather, so while it's nicely broken-in, it should be able to endure some fixing up and conditioning.

Very fortunate that the seller is willing to take it back, as well. I bet it would look great with a little TLC, and the price can't be beat - but if you don't think you'll be happy - or if the repairs are too costly - hold out for one in better shape - it's probably going to cost more, though.
 

annaes

Member
Jun 26, 2008
175
2
NY
I agree that it definitely needs some TLC, and I think this leather has great potential once it's cleaned up. Also thank you for correcting me on the color, this is my very first bal :love: so I'm not too clear on colors yet, though I have been studying up on the reference thread.

Here's another thought:
If I keep it for a while, clean it up some and then resell it on the bay or bonanzle after a little TLC, do you think I would be able to make enough to get one in better condition? Or is this too worn to get much more than the $500 I payed for it?
It seems like a lot of people here on tpf sell their old bags to make money for a different one... :thinking:
 

BlueKat

Queen of the Castle
Jul 20, 2008
756
1
USA
annaes, I was in a similar situation as you last summer. I bought a Bbag on the 'Bay that was well worn like yours - handles darkened, sealant/edges/corners were cracked and worn all around, and the bag was dirty all over - and I got it for a steal. The seller was honest in her auction and did report the real condition of the bag, thus, the very low price. I ended up keeping the bag and sending it to LMB for some TLC. I specifically told them that I wanted the handles cleaned, the edges sealed, and to do a general cleaning of the bag, but NO re-dye. LMB did a fantastic job, and I was happy with the results. The price wasn't too bad, but the price really does depend on what kind of service you want done to your bag.
 

annaes

Member
Jun 26, 2008
175
2
NY
annaes, I was in a similar situation as you last summer. I bought a Bbag on the 'Bay that was well worn like yours - handles darkened, sealant/edges/corners were cracked and worn all around, and the bag was dirty all over - and I got it for a steal. The seller was honest in her auction and did report the real condition of the bag, thus, the very low price. I ended up keeping the bag and sending it to LMB for some TLC. I specifically told them that I wanted the handles cleaned, the edges sealed, and to do a general cleaning of the bag, but NO re-dye. LMB did a fantastic job, and I was happy with the results. The price wasn't too bad, but the price really does depend on what kind of service you want done to your bag.
Thanks for sharing! :flowers:
So, when LMB cleaned it, did it change the texture/softness of the leather at all? Was the leather a little 'off' afterward?
I think I would basically want the same things done to this bag as you had done to yours: general cleaning and sealant repairs. :smile:
 

sweetlust

O.G.
Dec 19, 2008
916
0
first of all, congratsss on getting this gorgeous leather city at a great deal!
this looks like a greige to me!
the back of the leather looks so thick & softtttt
i think it is normal if the previous owner has used the bag heavily...
i would suggest you to ask for a quote from LMB, if you are comfortable with it, then i will keep the bag and have it sent to LMB...
if you think the price is too high, i would suggest for a return.

^ I TOTALLY AGREE! For that price + LMB, it would still be a steal for a great oldie plus the end result would be fabulous! :biggrin: