Hey gals! I wanted to share a review of my Gucci Soho Disco bag as I’ve worn it a lot lately and it’s one of my favorite investment pieces. I’m going to dedicate the first part of this post to the bag, then share my perspective on designer pieces in general. It’s a recurring topic in the world of fashion and my goal is to share a few tips in the event purchasing a designer bag is something you’ve been considering.
Let’s get started. 🙂
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This March I purchased my Gucci Soho Disco bag on TheRealReal.com, an authenticated luxury consignment site. It was designed by Gucci’s former Creative Director, Frida Giannini, and has become one of Gucci’s most iconic bags. Although it has gained such popularity and a large following it will be retired shortly by Gucci’s new creative director Alessandro Michele. Why? Creative Directors like to feature their designs and Alessandro will be replacing it with some of his own conceptions.
Here’s why I think the Soho Disco bag has become such a favorite:
- It’s exceptionally well made. The exterior is thick, slightly pebbled leather and everything is hand stitched. Once when Ridge and I were taking photos I placed it behind a ledge to hide it for an up-close shot. Because it was out of site I forgot and left it at the building (the Visitor’s Center in our town). The next day I realized it was missing and (panicking!) retraced my steps. The wonderful ladies that run the center had found my bag Monday morning and tucked it away. However, the evening before it had poured and my bag was soaked! Once it dried though it showed no signs of sitting in the pouring rain. Many lower quality bags however would have been completely ruined. (Side note…this was a wake-up call for me to carefully track everything I bring to our little photo sessions!)
- It goes with anything. I wear this bag to death and sometimes worry you will get tired of seeing it over and over. It’s hard not to though because it really does go with everything.
- It elevates everything. Not only does the Gucci Soho disco bag go with anything, it enhances whatever I am wearing. I don’t know if it’s the shape, the tassel, or the raised logo, but it takes a basic outfit from “ok” to “wow”. A tee and a pair of denim shorts look totally different when I throw it on my shoulder. When I don’t have time to think about an outfit I know it’ll do the work for me by turning a basic ensemble into a statement.
- It holds a lot for a small bag. I think it is the rectangular “camera bag” shape that makes it so space-efficient. As a mom, I need to bring certain things wherever I go, and even though I read positive reviews before purchasing I was still surprised to see just how much it actually holds.
Now that I’ve spilled the beans on this particular one, here are my thoughts on when and how it makes sense to invest in a designer bag for your wardrobe.
Can you afford it?
This is the most important question. Each bag I get is meditated and planned. Once I research and identify a bag, I typically save for a few months. I know people who even have a specific “luxury savings account” for this purpose and think this is a great idea. (Just make sure it doesn’t replace your regular savings!) As mentioned, I got my Gucci Soho Disco bag on The Real Real; going the “pre-loved” route can help a little financially too. (Note- this bag is very popular so if you want to go the pre-owned route you may have to stalk it a little. In addition to The Real Real, Trendlee and Fashionphile are two other good luxury consignment sites.)
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How often will you use it?
I purchased my first designer bag, the Louis Vuitton Totally pm, in 2011 and for five years it was my every day bag. When purchasing a designer bag, make sure it’s one you will be able to get plenty of use from. Good things to think about are your lifestyle and the clothes hanging in your closet: does it go with both of these?
Will it keep its value?
Some designer brands retain their value better than others. I’ve read that Louis Vuitton, Chanel, and Hermes are the designers that retain value best, but even within these brands certain styles will stay in demand and hold value better than others. Given the enduring popularity of the Gucci Soho Disco bag and its upcoming retirement from production, this bag made a lot of sense to me from this standpoint. An interesting anecdote on reselling bags: I’ve considered selling my Louis Vuitton Totally bag for something new. When I looked at what this bag is reselling for, I was surprised to see pre-loved ones in the same condition selling for $200 more than what I got mine for six years ago. It’s crazy to think I can get back what I put into this bag after I got to enjoy it for six years. Bottom line: do the research on a bag you’re interested in to see if it’s expected to retain its value.
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How will you feel about it in five years?
The important thing to know about getting your value back from a bag is that it usually involves keeping it for several years. If you purchase a bag and decide to sell it six months later it’s unlikely you will get back close to what you put in. Therefore it’s important to think about your style, how it’s changed, and if you expect the bag to remain relevant for you over the next few years.
When all is said and done, the decision to purchase a designer bag is a very personal choice. It can be argued it’s a lot of money to spend on “just a purse”. On the other hand if you love fashion and appreciate beautiful design, I’m all for doing the research and responsibly timing a bag that will serve you in the long run, both fashionably and financially.
What do you think? Is splurging on a designer bag worth the spend?