Could you be making £6,000 from your old handbags? Expert explains how

The Repair Shop: Derek emotional over repaired handbag

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“When you consider that the average woman amasses a haul of 111 handbags in her lifetime, that’s an unmined treasure trove,” commented Mrs Staerck in an exclusive comment made to Express.co.uk. The multimillion-pound business owner shared that their consistent rise of popularity could also see people making much more by using luxury handbags as investments rather than products, Mrs Charlotte Staerck shared what bags could be worth thousands of pounds.

Mrs Staerck: “We’ve seen a huge shift culturally in recent years and, instead of people being apprehensive of how they might be perceived shopping preowned, the stigma has vanished and people want to be seen shopping in this way, doing their bit for the circular economy.

“This trend was heighted by the pandemic which made a lot of people become much more conscious of their values and consumption habits.

“Through resale, people can continue to get their newness fix guilt-free, freeing up cash to spend on something new and all with the peace of mind they are being kind to the planet.”

Fashion items like bags also provide a solid investment opportunity as some swing back into style years after their release or discontinuation.

Mrs Staerck continued: “The Dior Saddle Bag is a perfect example of this. Following Dior’s reintroduction of their saddle bag in their Fall 2018 show, the look and style exploded back onto the market and their value rocketed.

“They went from being completely unsalable, possibly fetching around £300, to selling for £1,000 plus. 

Before this, these bags had one of the longest shelf lives of all of our brands/styles, so it’s crazy to think how rapidly everything changed.”

“We had customers who had Fendi Baguettes stored away in their cupboards – they were over the moon to earn hundreds of pounds from an item they’d disregarded at the back of their wardrobe.”

Investing in bags

“Because of their often-appreciating value, luxury handbags are one of the most sought-after items to buy and sell on the preowned market. They are seen as collector’s items and, in the face of economic uncertainty, a sound investment that can be passed down through generations.

“To put it into context the FTSE and gold, which were until now regarded as a safe haven for wealth, both increased by 39 percent in the last decade whilst Birkin bags grew in value by 108 percent within the same period and 500 percent in the last 35 years.

“With any bold trend bags my advice is to watch the market and sell at the right time. I made over £300 on a Velvet Gucci Marmont bag by watching the market and buying one just before it took off. I then sold it the minute it reached its height, before its value dipped.

“I would also advise caution against any brands that don’t have a standout iconic style that have stood the test of time. Miu Miu and Tom Ford spring to mind immediately here.

“Also any brands which have frequent sales or are discounted by the fashion label itself – this means the value can significantly drop despite being current – this happens a lot with Anya Hindmarch and Jimmy Choo,” she added.

The highest appreciating bags at the moment

Chanel Classic

“In the next couple of months we could be looking at close to £6,000 for a Chanel Classic which would have cost £3,500 when I began doing this many years ago.  

“First introduced in 1955 by Coco Chanel herself, this was the first bag of its kind to come with a shoulder strap for women suggesting freedom and practicality. It was almost a rebellion at the time making it an instant icon.”

Hermes Birkin

“These are some of the most expensive bags in the world with a resale value of anywhere between £5,000 to £300,000.

“They were thrust into the spotlight in the 90’s when they became the It-bag of the era with a vast high-profile celebrity following – Sex and the City had a whole episode dedicated to its cult status and rarity,” Mrs Staerck noted.

If you happen to find the exclusive, highly sought-after black Birkin with gold hardware or otherwise known amongst the fashion tribe as ‘the holy grail,’ this bag will pay you back in spades.

“A leather Birkin 35 currently sells for anywhere between £13,500 to £15,000 on the resale market providing it’s in mint condition.”

Handbags with the biggest resale value currently

“From Mulberry’s recently relaunched Alexa bag, Givenchy’s expansion of the Antigona bag and Gucci’s Jackie – to Christian Dior’s Lady Dior which has been thrust firmly back on the lust list following Netflix’ series The Crown’s portrayal of Princes Diana and Prada’s Re-Edition Nylon Bags, which first rose to fame in the early aughts and have recently been brought back by the likes of Kendall Jenner and Bella Hadid with their vintage versions.”

What to do before selling a second-hand bag

Restoration treatments can perform miracles adding hundreds and even thousands of pounds onto the value of leather handbags or shoes.

“When you’re spending hundreds and often thousands of pounds on luxury handbag, that’s a major investment.

“As always, prevention is better than cure and we always advise customers to protect their bag from day one and to get regular cleaning and protective treatments – this will ensure your bag holds Its value should you want to sell in on.”

Mrs Staerck recalled the restoration of a Hermes Birkin with a broken handle as someone had tried to steal the bag, due to its value and rarity only the most senior artisan could handle the bag, which saw a £300 price tag on the restoration itself.

However, this cost couldn’t even dent the bags full resale value of over £8,000.

“Hermes Birkin, which is a jewel in the crown when it comes to luxury handbags and its often a client’s most treasured possession.

“The result was flawless and the client was overjoyed we had been able to provide a happy end to a such a terrible story. It’s such a joy to be able to put the life back into something so irreplaceable,” she concluded.
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