Charity Shop

The Real Deal

Following on from my post about Faking It a guide to how to get the luxe look without the price tag, I began to wonder how to quickly identify genuine luxury pieces. Have you ever found amazing bargain accessory in a charity shop only to end up walking away because of the uncertain provenance of the piece? Spotting the real deal is doesn’t have to be hard, there are already plenty of brand specific guides on the internet, especially on eBay. They offer some great advice, and I want to build on that and give you done tips which can always be relied upon regardless of the brand.

From a Distance
Before even looking into more detail, luxury shoes and bags have a certain presence to it. Shoes have a certain elegance and sleekness to them, bags tend to have good structure even after years of service. Leathers and fabrics will have a depth to their colour.

The Riviera Bag (left) was Made in England during the 1960s, 50 years down the line it’s structurally solid, zips and clasps all still work. Here pictured with Paris 105 by Yves Saint Laurent. The unbranded Snakeskin piece (right hand image) is likely to have been made in Germany in the 60s or 70s, and likewise still in exceptionally good condition.

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Timeless Elegance

Recently I’ve been repeatedly reminded of an era of true glamour and elegance, everything from the weather, to fellow bloggers, to local shop openings have reminded me of why I love the late 1950s and early 60s. It was an era of lasting icons, where fame and reputation didn’t last 15 minutes and also marked the beginning of a new youth counterculture which defined the latter part of the 20th Century.

It’s funny how little things can trigger things in ones mind, walking in the soft winter sun around Knightsbridge, it takes your mind to an old money fantasy, it was the jet age, Paris or Milan, St Tropez or Portofino was a matter of hours away. It carried the likes of Jackie O, Grace Kelly, Elizabeth Taylor and Catherine Deneuve round the world uniting the best of both sides of the Atlantic.


Hepburn in Givenchy

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A Second Chance

Lots of people might wonder why anybody would want to wear someones old shoes? Some of these shoes have been remarkably well looked after, or for some reason even unworn! Sometimes what you’re looking for is waiting there for you.

I feel like I’m in a time warp and it’s the 90’s again. These Juliet & Juliet shoes still have the protective plastic on the soles. The Ferragamos have been worn a lot over the past couple of years, not bad for £25 from a Pimlico charity shop.
Charity Shop Chic

Some unbelievably good finds can pop up anywhere, a local place got a donation which included two pairs of Miu Mius, a pair of Rupert Sandersons, and a pair of McQueens, all of which were worn at most a couple of time. To save time however I do recommend that a spot of profiling, signs of disposable income are always good indicators. Look out for large detatched and semi-detatached properties with well kept gardens, 2-3 cars expensive cars on driveways, and private and prep schools.

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