Are designer handbags a good investment?

As you can imagine, one of the most popular items we resell here at Dress Cheshire are designer handbags. From Michael Kors to Hermès, a beautiful designer handbag is a perennially popular accessory, but as with any accessory we buy for ourselves they eventually become less exciting to carry, and our eyes start to stray to the next must-have bag. So what happens to the now longer loved designer bag? Dress Cheshire finds it a new home with someone who will love it again – for a while, at least.

In this respect, a great designer handbag won’t ever be a 100% sunk cost – keep it in good condition and you can earn some money to put towards your next handbag of choice. But, are there handbags where one can actually make a profit? Well, there’s one brand for sure that will make you money – Hermès.

The Hermès Kelly and Birkin bag, in any of its forms, is so popular, and so rare, that they hike in price the moment they leave the boutique. Hermès have an extremely clever marketing plan, driven by their obsession with quality and absolute dedication to perfection in every bag made. They only produce a very limited number of each of their bags each year, which means supply is considerably less than demand. If you’re lucky enough to be offered a bag by Hermès, you don’t say no, even if it’s not the colour you were hoping for. In this way, Hermès keeps demand at a high and exclusivity a driving factor in the desire to own one. This, naturally, results in a thriving pre-loved market for Hermès bags, with hopeful shoppers unable to get on ‘the list’ at their local Hermès retailer, buying via boutiques such as Dress Cheshire. I have a wait-list for Hermès bags, and a steady supply of ladies ready to sell, too.

Other brands where you might actually make a return on your investment are those who discontinue a line, or launch a limited edition style, making those bags now impossible to buy new. Dior, Gucci, Prada, Bottega Veneta – all you need is a super-starlet to be seen with one on their arm and demand will follow.

While you might not see a profit on your designer handbag purchase in most cases, there are some brands that retain a greater resale value as a percentage of their original purchase price. You can’t go wrong with a classic Chanel 2.55 Classic Mini Flap Bag, designed by the icon herself in 1955 and the epitome of an accessory that has stood the test of time.

More recently, and definitely one to watch, is Jacquemus. Only founded in 2009, this quirky little brand has been making huge waves – if you haven’t seen their recent Paris campaign, look it up, car-sized Jacquemus bags cruising the streets of the French capital are an unforgettable sight, even if it’s just clever CGI. Their signature bag, the Chiquito, is rapidly becoming an icon in itself, and resale values will reflect this.

As with any designer pieces you are considering re-selling, quality is key to the value that will be placed on it. Pre-loved bags might be expected to be a little worn, but staining on the inside, scratches on the exterior, missing pieces, etc, do not a good price make. If you’ve kept the soft bag and the original packaging, that’s great and will really help set the best price for you.

If you have a bag to sell, or have a craving to own something special, get in touch for some expert advice – you never know, I could be about to make your dreams come true.

Christine x