REVEAL of my first B! And the story of my walk-in fairy tale (with a happy ending)...

bem3231

O.G.
Aug 10, 2008
1,004
6
Hello everyone!

I wanted to post about my recent shopping day in Honolulu, because it had a happy ending for me that I am anxious to share. I’m sorry if this is long-winded but thought that my experience might be of interest to some…

I have been vacationing on Maui and decided to fly to Honolulu for a day just to try my luck at the Hermes boutiques there. Unfortunately I no longer live in a city with a boutique, so my Hermes shopping excursions have been few and far between. As many of you who do not live near a boutique know, this makes it difficult to form the relationship with a boutique / SA that is necessary to be able to access coveted items at Hermes. I have a great relationship with my SA in my former city, however it’s a smaller boutique with limited inventory, and so much of my shopping happens on the Hermes Canada site. Again, not ideally conducive to being able to score hard-to-find items!

I had read promising things about the ability for walk-in clients to get K/B’s at the Honolulu boutiques, so I figured I had nothing to lose. What’s more, I’m eight months pregnant with our second child, so it’s likely that this would be my last chance to have a dedicated shopping day in a major center for a while. The purpose of my trip was two-fold – given my limited boutique access and the talk of an imminent Hermes price increase there were a number of scarves and jewelry pieces that I was looking to acquire. In particular, as a relative scarf neophyte I was looking to expand my collection of scarves beyond the 90 cm silk twills. I had posted and received some wonderful advice about various alternative sizes here:

http://forum.purseblog.com/hermes/please-help-me-expand-my-scarf-shawl-collection-800084.html

My secondary goal was to try my hand at perhaps being offered a bag. I have been debating what the best ‘next bag’ for me might be, and again, the advice of tPFers was, as always, immensely helpful. I had been considering a Jypsiere despite having a typical collector’s longing for a Birkin. I started a thread asking for advice and received some wonderful feedback, including suggestions to consider a Kelly retourne or a Shoulder Birkin II, as I am not a handheld bag girl at best of times – a reality that is exacerbated with young children in tow. I received so many helpful suggestions, photos, etc. – I am so grateful for how helpful the tPF community is! That thread can be found here:

http://forum.purseblog.com/hermes/hold-out-for-birkin-or-go-practicality-jypsiere-796624.html

So, I set off on a day trip to Honolulu. I had called both the Waikiki and Ala Moana boutiques the day prior to see if they had a few of the scarves that I was interested in. Waikiki would not give me inventory information over the phone, but Ala Moana was very helpful. They took down the list of scarves, and called me back about two hours later with inventory information, including all available colors. They even offered to hold several of the scarves in different colorways for me. They were so helpful that my inclination was to begin my shopping day at Ala Moana.

However, by chance I ended up beginning my day in Waikiki as I have a girlfriend honeymooning there and so we had a coffee in the morning. I thought that I had might as well pop into the Waikiki boutique to see what kind of inventory they had and what sort of reception I received. I was greeted immediately by a lovely SA. We started in the scarf department. They didn’t have a tremendous selection of stock in the items that I was mainly interested in, however I did find a 70 cm scarf that I was wanting (‘Les Parisiennes’ in white – so cute!). There was another that I had her set aside for me to think about. I then asked to look at jewelry. I was interested in some enamel bracelets (Clic Clac / Clic H), however I was only looking for gold toned ones as I’m partial to gold and their inventory in gold toned pm sizes was very limited. I then asked if she happened to have any CdC’s (despite the fact that there were none on display) and, low and behold, she came out with an orange Epsom with ghw in the small size – a piece that I’ve been hunting for ages! I was delighted and said that I would take it.

I then asked to look at bags. I inquired about some Jypsieres and other models that they had on display. I then asked whether by chance they had any Kelly’s or Birkins available. She said that no, they did not have any currently available, but asked how long I was in town. I said that I was there just for the day, but that if something might be expected to become available the next day that I would consider extending my stay by one day (which I was prepared to do). She said that she didn’t think there would be anything coming in the next day either, but that on my next trip to Honolulu I should call ahead to inquire and perhaps try to stay longer.

I continued to look around while she assisted me. I went upstairs and looked around there. While we were there she asked what colors / sizes I would be mainly interested in in bags. I told her my preferences – either a neutral or a bright and fun but still wearable and multi-season color, preferably in togo, with a strong preference for gold hardware – ideally in a 35 (maybe 32) for Kelly and 35 for Birkin. I did not even think to mention Shoulder Birkin as I had read somewhere on the forum here that they are quite elusive and that boutiques generally only receive one Shoulder Birkin for every ten Birkins or something like that, so it seemed like a super-long shot. She indicated that the previous day they had received a beautiful B35 with ghw but that it had immediately gone to a delighted local client. She indicated that she might have a B40 available and asked if I would be interested in that size, but I said probably not as I felt that it would be too large / heavy.

Finally I had looked through the entire boutique and decided to pay for my items. She had me fill out the client profile sheet and noted that I had purchased in the US before (not much – one exotic CdC that I luckily procured from Madison Avenue last year – all of my other purchases have been from Canada and the Canadian and American systems aren’t linked). She asked me to list on the back of the client profile my particular size / color preferences for bags. After I did so she disappeared for a few moments as my items were being packaged. When she returned she said that she would double-check with her manager on the possible availability of bags and call me within the hour if she happened to have any good news. She suggested that I go have lunch and wait for her call, which I did.

About 45 minutes later she called and said that they had two bags available that she was wondering if I might be interested in – a B35 in a dark green color with phw, and a Shoulder Birkin II in what she described as ‘orange’ with ghw. I assumed that it was the classic Hermes orange. I said that I would definitely be interested in looking at the Shoulder Birkin and arranged to meet her back at the boutique later that afternoon. She was extremely gracious and told me ‘not to rush’, which I appreciated, assuring me that the bag would not be sold before I had a chance to see it.

At this stage I started getting excited. Classic orange, although not a primary wardrobe color for me, is one of the ‘fun’ neutral colors that I had been considering given that it’s so classically Hermes, and I do love it with gold hardware. That said, I cannot seem to pull off orange with black (it seems too Halloween-y to me somehow, although I have seen many others pull it off with true style), so I was a bit concerned about that as I do wear a lot of black – especially through our long Canadian winters! Still, I was quite excited at the prospect of possibly being offered a bag, period!
 

bem3231

O.G.
Aug 10, 2008
1,004
6
When I returned I was greeted very kindly once again, and my SA asked if there were any other items that I might be interested in. Still having items left on my wish list, I set aside another scarf and indicated that if I ended up with a bag I would be interested in a scarf and / or jewelry to complement the color of the bag. I was interested in a Rivale with ghw and a matching Ano, which they had in both orange and red with ghw. I was looking at the orange but she urged me to set the red aside, which was my first indication that the bag that I was about to see was perhaps not classic Hermes orange after all.

Finally she said, “you must be anxious to see the bag” to which I replied “of course”! I had a seat while she went upstairs and returned with a lovely huge orange box. We went into the back room and she unveiled a beautiful Shoulder Birkin II in Capucine togo with ghw! I have never seen Capucine in real life, but was immediately taken with how vibrant and beautiful it is – especially with the gold accents! It took me less than a minute of contemplation to decide to take it. I think that it is a perfect ‘colorful neutral’ color, and, for myself, I actually far prefer it to the classic Hermes orange once I compare the two (for a bag, anyways). I think that the Shoulder Birkin might just be the perfect solution for me at this point in my life circumstances given that it has the Birkin features and ease of use, but with the benefit of the shoulder carry option, which is really a necessity for me with little ones in tow. I asked to look at twillys for the handles of the bags and chose a pair to include with my purchases.

So, my long-shot day of Hermes shopping in Honolulu paid off! I can’t say enough good things about my experience in the Waikiki boutique. As I sat waiting for my final set of purchases to be wrapped and rung up several of the SAs chatted with me and were very pleasant. As I wanted to take the box but had to fly back to Maui that evening I asked if they could package the box in a larger plain cardboard box, and their shipper came down with boxes, packing material, and supplies. The SAs wrapped my box up and got it ready for the plane, even using yards and yards of Hermes ribbon to secure and construct a handle for the shipping box! Then, my lovely and very helpful SA actually carried the box for me to the nearest hotel where I could get a taxi so that I would not have to carry it in my pregnant state, which I well and truly appreciated.

As a brief epilogue to this already long story, after dropping my purchases at my girlfriends hotel room I then went to the Ala Moana boutique anyways, as I still had items being held for me there. I had another wonderful experience there with an extremely helpful and knowledgeable SA. I purchased a couple of other scarves and my first GM silk / cashmere piece! Ala Moana had much better stock in scarves than Waikiki, though they had less stock in leather and enamel jewelry.

Long story short – there is hope for those of us who do not live proximate to an Hermes boutique, but who still wish to acquire hard-to-find bags without having to forego the boutique experience or pay the markups of resellers. I hope that my story and experience might prove helpful to some of you who are on the lookout for elusive items!

I am delighted with all of my finds and am anxious to reveal some of them here!...

And finally, a great, big, huge THANK YOU to the tPF community and to all of the helpful posters, past and present, who inform and inspire me, and in particular to all of the very kind and helpful ladies who shared their feedback and advice with me by replying to my inquiries as I prepared to undertake this shopping trip and researched these purchases!

So, without further ado, I am delighted and excited to present Ms. Capucine ghw SB II…
 

bem3231

O.G.
Aug 10, 2008
1,004
6
A new 70 cm cashmere/silk scarf - forgive me as i don't know the names of these scarf designs and I don't want to completely unfold everything to figure them out as I need to repack everything right away.
 

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Juda

Member
O.G.
Apr 23, 2009
2,291
549
Congrats!!! I am so happy for you.
It is beautiful.
I enjoyed the story and after i finished reading it - you posted your bag.
perfect timing and beautiful reveal.
 
Jan 20, 2009
1,648
64
What a fabulous story and a very special, beautiful ending. I have seen this colour and it is very pretty so enjoy.
 

bem3231

O.G.
Aug 10, 2008
1,004
6
And finally this scarf which I love, but have never seen this type before. It's 100% silk but stretchy like jersey. It drapes so beautifully. Can someone enlighten me as to what it's called? It's triangular in shape. I love these colors!

Well that's it for my one-day multi-boutique haul! Thank you for looking... :smile:
 

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whimsic

Member
Sep 1, 2011
2,596
193
Wow congratulations!! I couldn't wait to see the pictures while i was reading the story! Beautiful purchases, every single one :smile: