What Does Preloved Bags Mean?
As the world becomes more environmentally conscious, sustainable fashion has become much more prevalent. There are various eco-friendly practices consumers may take part in.
La Collection Élégance focuses on the concept of buying preloved designer handbags, wallets, and accessories. In this blog post, we will explain what the term preloved means, what that means in the context of a handbag, and why they have become a preferred choice for some consumers.
What Does "Preloved" mean?
Let us first start with the term preloved. Preloved is another way of describing an item which is used. This may otherwise be known as second hand or preowned. This means it has been owned by someone before and has been passed on to another person.
Below is a preloved vintage designer handbag from the La Collection Élégance shop. This is a vintage Dior Trotter clutch which features leather interior and a canvas outer material. It is the perfect companion for an evening out on the town. Click here to check out details on this stunner!
What is a Preloved Bag?
Now we are ready to discuss what a preloved handbag is. In this context, a preloved handbag is one which was owned by someone else. Sometimes people donate them to thrift shops, donation bins, or sell them to consignment-like shops. This process contributes to circular fashion and expands the life of items once loved by someone else. In addition, the new buyer often saves money as the price to buy something preloved is often much less than buying brand new.
What Conditions Do Preloved Bags Come In?
Preloved items range in condition from poor to excellent. When an item is in poor condition, you may expect many defects. Which means it may need extensive repairs before being used. Repairs are often done by cobblers or leather specialists. A little leather paint, dye, and some leather conditioner can go a long way for some items. Otherwise, these items may be better suited for an up upcycling project such as earrings, key chains, or bracelets.
When an item is in excellent condition, you may expect very little wear. Sometimes this means the previous owner only wore it a handful of times before passing it along. Often times, preloved designer handbags and wallets you find at high end thrift or consignment shops, have lots of life left and have only minor signs of wear.
The Benefits of Buying Preloved Designer Handbags?
You may be asking yourself at this point, what are the benefits of buying preloved? Buying preloved designer handbags and wallets contributes to sustainability and circular fashion. This means we are using items until the end of their life cycles. If not, we are donating or selling items back to shops so others can make use of items we are no longer in love with.
On the other hand, fast fashion consumes large amounts of resources and energy. In turn, this leads to pollution, waste, and exploitation of workers.
Why is Sustainable Fashion Important?
By choosing preloved designer handbags, wallets, and accesories consumers contribute to reducing the demand for handbag production, thus lowering their carbon footprint. When we pass along an item we no longer want, other consumers can make use of an item which also decreases the amount of waste we are producing.
The Benefits of Sustainable Fashion
There are quite a number of added bonuses to buying preloved designer:
- We get to save money! Now, who doesn’t want to save money while making a large purchase? In turn, we can build a larger collection of preloved designer handbags (with a smaller investment) or simply save the extra money for something else!
- You get access to a more curated selection of pieces. Some of which, are rare as they have been discontinued or sold in limited collections. For example, the Louis Vuitton Takashi Murakami collection from the early 2000’s. This collection is well known and has made a recent resurgence due to the popularity of the vintage & 90’s trend.
- You get to support charities and local businesses that align with your values and beliefs. Many thrift stores where designer items may be donated, share a portion of their proceeds to charity. Meanwhile, small businesses that source luxury items are contributing to our collective goal to have less waste produced, and moving closer to a zero waste/circular economy. Therefore buying preloved, helps the economy flourish.
If that isn’t enough reason for you to purchase preloved designer from trusted sellers like La Collection Élégance, we have a few more reasons below.
- Many preloved designer handbags and wallets retain their value. In fact, some actually appreciate! Many styles from Chanel, Louis Vuitton, and Hermes have a known tract record of increasing in value. This is due to the fashion houses’ growth in sales, popularity, and in other cases rarity of certain luxury items. Therefore if you buy preloved designer handbags, you may be seeing a bigger return on your investment (should you choose to sell an item) since preloved items cost a fraction of the price to buy brand new.
The chart below sourced from Harper’s Bazaar, shows the price increases of the Chanel medium flap bag, which is one of Chanel’s most popular bag sizes. The chart shows that since 1955, the value of the Chanel medium flap has increased steadily. Starting at a modest $220 dollars and jumping up to $4680 value in 2016.
If you follow news in the designer and fashion world closely, you would know that Chanel recently raised their prices. This same medium flap bag is now worth $10 200- which demonstrates that the value has continued to rise between 2016 and 2023.
- We have also noticed that some contemporary styles of designer handbags are spin off versions of best sellers that were made years before. For example, the Louis Vuitton toiletry pouch (popularized by princess Diana) vs the modern toiletry pouch on chain. Recently, the fashion house remade this bag in a few different styles. However, if examined closely, one will notice that there are not many differences! Something so simple as adding a looped piece of canvas and a set of d-rings was one of the changes in the updated models. Albeit, some of the upgrades result in more versatility. For other styles, it is something so simple as another colour offering.
- Buying preloved vintage items sometimes means better quality. For example, prior to 2008 Chanel used to manufacture their items with 24k gold plated hardware. This meant that the hardware would last much longer without discolouration and tarnishing. In the case of Louis Vuitton, some vintage pieces come with full brass hardware. Which means, when tarnish starts to happen, it can easily be shined up with some polisher. Whereas, newer pieces come with plated metal which is not nearly as durable. Moreover, some avid Louis Vuitton lovers and collectors have suggested the canvas material on their vintage pieces, are thicker and more durable than their newer counterparts.
By now, I hope you have a better understanding of what a preloved designer handbag is, as well as the benefits of shopping preloved luxury items. You can check out our curated collection at lacollectionelegance.ca - happy shopping!