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Published September 16th 2014
Leather handbags and coats at amazingly reduced prices
Even a highly intelligent woman such as Hilary Clinton is quoted as saying "handbags are like a deep psychological need. ...I have this Ferragamo hot-pink bag that I adore... I mean, how can you be unhappy if you pick up a big pink bag?"
Of course like you I want to say: "Well what you need to do is make sure everyone in your realm has enough money to buy a Ferragamo handbag, or sell yours and give the money to charity." But for the purposes of this story I'll let it sit because I have also become quite enamoured with great leather hand bags.
Most bags are half their retail price but many are much less
In China earlier this year I watched my travel companions pay big bucks for copies of famous brands such as Prada. Burberry Gucci, Saint Laurent, Salvatore Ferragamo, Balenciaga, Louis Vuitton, Chanel and Hermes. It really made them happy but I guess being fakes they won't be so happy in five months time when they start falling apart. The bags that is.
A good real leather bag lasts and lasts and looks the same forever. Some might even say it's an investment.
At first sight it went on and on as far as the eye could see. The area was so large that it took a full 20 minutes before we happened across a staff member who gave us a nod and then we continued on our merry way taking in the smell, feel and look of endless leather bags.
We picked them up; we carried them around for size. We smelt them and oohed and crooned over them.
My poor companion. Every time she found a great bag I grabbed it and said: "I have to photograph this for the WeekendNotes readers. They just have to see this."
Which is why this article is a bit heavy with photographs but fellow bag lovers are bound to understand.
There were lots of brands but two that stood out for me were County Road and Pierre Cardin as normally these two are so pricey.
Later researching the company I found that some of their other stock might include Mandarina Duck, Prada and more.
There was every style; shoulder bags, totes, hobos, backpack styled, baguettes, satchels and clutches.
I am afraid I was so captivated with the handbags I didn't take huge note of the leather jackets. But there were huge long racks of them for both men and women. I did note there was a lovely assortment of colours and styles.
My long-suffering friend, restrained once again from her own shopping held one up for me to photograph for you.
I did not see any damaged stock so if there were any issues they were miniscule. I think it is more of a place to sell off excess or last year's styles. But unless you are a vegan my sense is that leather never goes out of style and much of the stock were classics that would serve you well for many years.
As I said this is bag wonderland. So as well as hundreds of handbags, there was a staggering variety of luggage. A lot of it was Samsonite and about half the price you might pay if were buying it retail. There were some snazzy items. There was also corporate stuff such as sachets and ipad covers.
I didn't much look at the shoes but my camera did rest on this great pair of boots. Although researching later on line I discovered that there might be some chances of picking up previous season Gucci shoes here. Still expensive but half the retail price.
Men are also well catered with "man bags", luggage and next time you need a new leather belt this is the place to go. There were belts here from $10.
There were also a number of accessories and unrelated stock. There were fascinators, and hats (good for the Spring racing season), umbrellas, scarves, leather purses of every description and even writing notebooks with Andy Warhol designed covers.
There were also plenty of gloves from short ones through to elbow length. A favourite of mine were the soft leather red gloves with dainty buttons at the top. The leather gloves were from $25 up and beautifully soft. Again great place to stock up with Christmas presents or to get your gear early for next winter.
So back to my newly formed bag fixation. I think bags are a sign of many things. It shows a lot about a woman. Her earning power, passion for fashion and taste. I think perhaps it is also the sign of having broken through the glass ceiling or even some other curtailment. In 1994, the Lady Dior became a sensation after Princess Diana took to sporting it around town after she separated from Prince Charles. It is also not surprising that bags have got larger in the last couple of decades as women's earning power and prestige in the work place has increased. So Hilary can show off her pink Ferragamo as far as I'm concerned.
And are there any other great places out there for cheap leather bags?