Why do people love/buy Chanel, LV, Gucci, expensive bags?

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  1. (other than the reason simply they can afford them lol.)
    I searched in the forum and online but have not found a post about this. If there are links, please let me know.
    I'm just curious and want to know if I'm missing something.
    I'm in the market for a crossbody bag and I like the look of Chanel flap bag and Gucci Soho Disco bag. However I can't justify spending the asking price for a piece of a handbag. There are other brands with a similar look of these bags also with a lot less cost.
    Are premier designer bags good for a investment for a resell later? Do they have a lifetime warranty?
    For example, a Gucci Disco bag is a simple rectangle shape zipper bag, very common and simple design. Why do people go crazy over this bag (even own several of them)? If there is a good reason I might look into buying one myself lol. In the mean time, I'm looking for similar designed bag in leather - please let me know if you know a brand.
  2. I think most people would say they buy designer for the name, quality, design, label recognition, cache/perceived cache, etc. No, not all designer handbags retain their original value or close to their original value over time unless they are rare or very expensive (e.g. Hermes, Chanel, some LV) and in excellent condition.

    There's a large resale market for preowned designer bags, many of which can be bought for a decent percentage less than original retail cost, meaning the owner is not recouping their original cost.

    There are a few threads here in the Handbags and Purses subforum with discussions on good quality handbags without the "designer" pricetags.
    Lemonmint likes this.
  3. This is where I believe there is a difference between fashion companies that offer handbags as part of their fashion vision and leather goods companies that offer a line of RTW to increase publicity.

    Although I own quite a few Chanel bags I haven't bought one for literally 10 years, partly that's due to their increasing disregard of attention to the longevity of their products. Basically I make to with what I have from Chanel or occasionally buy vintage.

    I can only answer (positively) as longtime happy owner/lover of Gucci, which is a leather good company.

    For example, a 1980s hobo (first carried by my mother and then by me) had to be repaired for the first time last year. It had been carried so much the stitches had actually worn away on the strap (which after 30 years of Summers is pretty good going). The repair took 2 months and cost £40 (approx. $60). That's preferable to throwing away what was an excellent bag or employing someone 'unknown' repair person to 'have a go'. They have also cleaned suede and nubuck and resoled shoes, replaces straps on old belts etc.

    So far I have found Gucci have stood behind their products. Under a new Creative Director and CEO I hope they will in future too as I only buy from companies with good aftercare services. If you are thinking of a Soho Disco perhaps ask questions about aftercare before buying and make it a condition of purchase :graucho:.
    vink, immigratty, Spellman and 8 others like this.
  4. People buy what they want and can afford. If you need to convince yourself to purchase a "designer" bag, then you might be satisfied with a less expensive option. Rebecca Minkoff makes Chanel inspired quilted flap bags but I don't know much about the brand. As for Gucci, they have regular sales, so you could wait for a sale in order to pick up something at a sizeable discount. Chanel has regular and significant price increases, which help drive up prices on the second hand market so if you purchase a classic flap and keep it in pristine condition, you might make a bit of a profit years down the road.
    vink likes this.
  5. Impressive, to me THAT kind of support, service is worth paying for.
    Lemonmint likes this.
  6. When I buy a bag, my primary or secondary reasons are not to resell. So resell value means very little to me especially since I don't consider handbags to be investments. For others they may buy simply to resell later. This doesn't mean I don't resell any of my bags - I have but just a few and once I've used it I don't really care much about the price I can get for it.

    My advice is that if you really love the Disco save up and get it instead of looking towards getting something cheaper. Trust me it's better to get something you really want than to settle. If you want seasonal colours like orange, fuchsia, purple, etc. those are on sale. Though I don't know if they are all sold out already. Unfortunately staple disco colours like red and black are never on sale. I think the disco is a very popular bag because of its simplicity and the quality of the leather used for it. Even at the regular price, it's pretty decent especially because of its versatility. It's a small bag that can transition from day to night and from casual to dressy.
    vink, Lemonmint, immigratty and 2 others like this.
  7. I buy primarily for quality and durability, which is not to say those automatically equate with premier designers. Resell doesn't factor into my decisions at all, but rather the deliciousness of the leather, the lining (I prefer leather or suede these days unless it's for a workhorse), the stitching, and overall construction of bags.

    I do think Chanel's (and some other premier brands) price increases are a bit much when the quality isn't comparable to previous decades. That said, even though there are other bags that have a similar look, no one is going to mistake a Chanel with Rebecca Minkoff for example or other inspired-by designs. That's not to knock RM or other brands that do similar bags, but there’s a clear difference even with modern Chanel’s issues. You can find quality across price points (especially in some indie/local artisans/less well known brands), but in general I do think sometimes you have to pay for it (though not always).

    Durability is another factor. I expect to get years if not decades out of my premier bags. Better made bags will last longer.

    Do I think any premier is worth its cost because of its name? No. And of course you can find nice bags at the contemporary level. However, I’ve found that trying to get the cheaper version/look of a bag you really like results in spending more money because you’re not going to be satisfied with your substitute and will buy more in the end than had you saved up in the first place.

    Why not try the Gucci disco? It’s a great bag, and the sticker shock would be nowhere near the Chanel’s. You can even find it pre-loved for about the cost of buying one of the less expensive options. You can also find pre-loved Chanel’s, but be sure to do your homework about its authenticity. A new Gucci disco will also be cheaper than a pre-loved Chanel flap.

    However, in the end it’s your choice and what’s best for you needs.
  8. I had a new fossil bag.
    In 2 years, the red dye came off. The turnlock made a grinding noise & dented. The strap seams came loose. And it smelled--in a bad way.

    I used my mulberry bayswater tote today.
    In the rain. Smelled of fantastic leather & collonil. Refused to stain. And hardware functioned as day was bought new. Plus several women oggled tree logo, smiling.

    That's the difference, imo.
    I paid extra & got extra.
    True, not all fossil bags are awful--not all mulberry are great.
    But my experience tells me to look for certain features.
    Then buy what works. For me. For longer-term.
    And what feels great to wear.

    Hope helps.
    vink, Hermezzy, Ahardiva and 9 others like this.
  9. There are probably as many reasons here as there are people....:P
    While I would dearly love to purchase many designer bags most times I don't. What I do is find a suitably close dupe and as long as it's good quality I'll buy that.....cause I don't usually fall in love with my bags for life.
    There are, of course, some exceptions.....those being my Balenciaga and my Mulberry's. Those are life-time keepers for me. But they're also pre-loved so I've saved a ton of money from buying brand spanking new. I've always loved the bargain and luckily I also love vintage and patina on most things.

    For me it's more about the "style" of a bag, or the silhouette than the designer name per se.

    But everyone is different and I respect everyone's choice, whatever works for them.
    I will add that I have a knock-off designer bag and a real version of the same designer (different style of bag though) and to look at them and feel them it's virtually impossible to tell the difference).
  10. You pose a good question and have gotten some good answers. But I'll throw in my two cents.

    I think this a matter of people pay for what they want, what they enjoy and where they have enough insight into see a difference. I don't drink coffee. So a $5 Starbucks is cuckoo to me. People could make that coffee at home for 5-50 cents!! But they buy it at 10-100x it's "real" value. 😱☕️ Seems like a waste of money and an inexplicable brand addiction to me. But Starbucks loyalists (like my DH) could tell me about quality of beans, roasting processes, proceeds going to save rain forests, ... and I would stare blankly while they shook their heads, walked away and enjoyed the full richness of their chosen brew. We could rinse and repeat and see me similarly puzzled while talking to car nuts, gun enthusiasts, art collectors, comic books fans... I would see junk and overpriced stuff. They would see value and discern differences where I would be totally blind.

    I don't buy specialty coffees or Superman comics but I surely love bags. So I get what I want and try my best not to compromise.

    Specifially, I buy designer bags because of style, quality, and design cache. It starts with style. I have to have a bag that is beautiful to me. Only certain bags make my heart stop. And, unfortunately (lol!) they are the ones that seem to cost more. Also, when possible / practical I want the original design not the "inspired". So if I want a quilted bag, I want Chanel - not a quilted sorta kinda Chanel. If I want saffiano, I want Prada Saffiano not almost saffiano.
    I personally love the simplicity yet fun of the Gucci Disco and may yet buy one. I wouldn't want someone else's version unless that version was more beautiful and at least as good in quality.

    And speaking of quality, I absolutely see a quality difference between a $50, $500 & $5000 bag. The leathers, linings, dye quality, construction, hardware, details, etc. are - in general - much better at premium v. contemporary v basic brand levels. I've owned at each price point and yes there is a DEFINITE difference.

    Is the difference in quality and materials enough to justify the full amount of the price differential? Nope. Is there enough of a difference to where it's hard for me to want to carry the $50 (or $200) purse because I see that difference? Yep. And brand power (my third motivator) makes up the rest of the gap. Certain brands are feminine or glamorous or edgy and I love it. It's fun and I like that cache attached to my bags.

    My bags are pretty and make me happy. So they are soooooo worth the price. But bags aren't a good investment when compared to true financial instruments. We could make ourselves feel better by saying they are "investment pieces" but what that really means is hopefully we've bought someone we want to use and keep for years so it was a good value in the long run. Oh, and I don't like to spend money when I don't have to so I do prefer to buy on sale or like new preowned.

    Bottom line I'd say if you aren't excited about buying a designer bag, definitely don't. To whom would you need to "justify" spending the money? It's your money. Why waste it on something that doesn't thrill you just because it thrills someone else. Spend your dollars on a great meal, a wonderful vacation, a new investment or even a bunch of new socks. 😀 👍
  11. :goodpost: This question comes up time and again on tpf. Sparkletastic you've summed it up much better than I could! I don't have a huge collection, less than 10, but I do love my bags and I can't compromise, because for me a lookalike just isn't the same in terms of quality, construction and design.
    Sparkletastic likes this.
  12. Fascinating replies so far, I like the variety of reasons, and the honesty of some remarks...

    Personally, I don´t buy a bag because it´s whatever-brand, but because I fall in love with the design of a particular piece, and I look so put together with it that I can´t stop thinking about it. It´s true that exquisite design, first-class leather and good hardware has its price, and therefore is found more on the premier brand segment than on the middle one... So, I only have five "premier" bags, which is ridiculously little for the average TPF nerd, but ridiculously high for my own family and friends, ha ha. I love and use each of them very frequently, and find joy in such paltry things like an awesome leather smell, a sturdy real brass hardware, or a thick suede lining, which, again, are more a hallmark of premier brands (at least in the past) than mid-price ones... So, I become obsessed with a gorgeous piece and that means I have to research it (reviews, YT vids, hands-on thorough exam): if I´m going to spend several hundred Euros, I want to make sure it´ll satisfy for many, many years... Alas, such thorough and protracted considerations often mean going the preloved route, because they are no longer made. Case in point, LV Trevi, LV Retiro old model, Mulberry Bayswater Choc Tooled Darwin, or Chloè Paraty. But those are the only pieces of their brand which make my heart sing, go figure. I am just as passionate and careful of my Liebeskind Laptop and Elina bags, which cost a fraction of a preloved LV or Chloè.

    There is, however, a brand that I´m particular about NEVER buying and it´s Chanel. I admit readily they have lovely designs and such, but I will never wear even a lipstick of this brand (nothing to do with quality quibbles; I just don´t patronize collabos).
  13. Depends what range of the bracket you're at right now. Many people think it's nuts to spend over $30 for a bag, and then months later find themselves buying $300 ones with no problem. Most don't just jump in and buy Chanel straight off the bat; there's often a gradual increase as these enthusiasts figure out their preferences and styles.
    tlatrice likes this.
  14. Very well said! I'd also just add that for some of us, there is a certain feeling that comes from buying and carrying a luxury brand. Whether it's the quality of the bag or just the feeling of treating ourselves to something special, the experience is very different from buying non-luxury (and for those of us who are into bags, it can be somewhat addicting!).

    I think that even if you point to logical things such as quality of materials and better resale ("investment") value, you really can't give a totally rational reason for what is at its core a very emotional experience. :biggrin:
  15. Personally for me, it is a mix of quality, design, heritage, name brand value. People have things they like to spend on, whether it is cars, comics, new technology or bags. All of them are excessive if you think of it. Sure you can drive a cheap car that gets you from A to B, but its different walking into BMW and getting offer drinks and the service along with it. I think the same is with luxury, going into the shop alone is an experience.

    And I don't think brands have a lifetime guarantee anymore. The market is different now, and with many new money people coming in without a care in the world about quality, brands can afford to alienate those that are willing to pay for a quality product and a brand that stands by their products.