“Our Staff Divulges Their First-Ever Designer Purchase, and Why They Chose Them”
Maybe this headline made you smile fondly, remembering that first purchase — or maybe you’re right in the middle of making that big decision yourself.
Whether it’s nostalgia or genuine info-slash-inspo seeking that brought you here, I’ve got no doubt you’re in the right place. We always find it strangely enlightening (and dare I say, charming?) to hear others’ stories about their process, motivators, and hindsight perspectives. Especially from those who have grown to know the industry so, (so) well.
Without further ado, we bring you a few of the voices behind our brand: Anais Rivera, Procurement Manager, Julien Isaacs, Product Manager, and Landyn Tedrick, a Personal Shopper here at FASHIONPHILE.
What was your first designer purchase?
Anais: Alexander Wang Diego Bucket with Rose Gold Hardware
Julien: A black Balenciaga Arena Computer case, an obvious must-have for my first job in New York City. I needed a chic, yet stylish bag to carry my laptop to and from work. The over-the-shoulder Balenciaga bag was the perfect item for my new daily commute on the Upper East Side.
Landyn: An Alexander Wang Marion crossbody with black pebbled leather and silver hardware. As much as I loved the bag, I loved what it represented even more: I was so proud of myself for working hard and treating myself.
Which fashion house were you most interested in? Did you have your heart set on one in particular?
Julien: I’ve always loved Prada; especially in recent years, with their bold segue into fun prints, patterns, and eye-catching motifs. I love that Prada isn’t afraid to take risks without ever compromising a certain level of elegance and urban sophistication.
Was it hard to narrow down a style? Was it a toss-up between two or three bags?
Anais: I had narrowed it down to the Phillip Lim Pashli, the Alexander Wang Diego and the Louis Vuitton Neverfull. Although I started with the Alexander Wang Diego, I ended up buying all three eventually. That’s what wishlists are for!
Julien: How could there not be? The good news is, I know I’ll have all of them eventually. The runners-up are already on my wishlist for next season. ;)
Landyn: It was very hard to narrow down the style. I think it’s natural to put a lot of pressure on your first designer piece.
Celine, but it just wasn’t the right time for me. Once I got a little more realistic with my budget, I realized the Alexander Wang Prisma crossbody was calling me. They didn’t make it in black with silver hardware yet, which drove me crazy. After waiting for months, I finally decided to go with the Marion crossbody. Even after they came out with the black and silver Prisma crossbody, I was honestly happy I went with the Marion.
What did you consider as most important in making your decision?
Anais: Before working at FASHIONPHILE, my handbag selection was very much influenced by social media and what was currently “trendy” at the time. I sometimes joke that working here has ruined me. I now do thorough research before making my next purchase, taking into consideration a number of factors like resale value. It helps ensure that I made a good investment, and gives me the option to sell my bag through our BuyBack program — it’s the perfect way to maintain my shopping habit without breaking the bank.
Julien: For me, it really depends on the item. Since I have a fashion blog on the side, sometimes it is really about function. Other times, I’m compelled to make a bold editorial statement with a style piece that just speaks to me.
Landyn: The most important thing about my decision making was my budget. While I had higher aspirations at the time, the Marion made the most sense financially. (If you’re just out of college, you’ll know what I’m talking about!)
What do you love most about that bag? Is it still in your collection today?
Anais: I sold my Diego bucket a couple of years ago, and honestly — to this day I regret it. My current every day is a Small Givenchy Antigona in Black. I’ve had it for over two years now and am happy to report that I’m still obsessed. I am actually looking forward to getting my hands on its new release, the Antigona Soft.
Julien: I loved the usability of the bag and also how that style of Balenciaga bags seems pretty timeless. It is still in my collection today – though after being lugged around the streets of New York, San Francisco, Beijing, and Los Angeles, I wouldn’t say it’s in the best shape. Actually, recently, I went and added a few fun patches on it to give it a fun second life.
Landyn: The three-pointed square shape and based corners sold me, hands-down. At the time it was considered unique and I wanted something edgy, so it just really resonated with me. I wore that bag to its grave. I still have her, but she’s definitely seen better days.
Is there anything you wish someone had told you then that you know now?
Anais: Invest in classic elegant pieces instead of trendy ones. I made a lot of impulse purchases in my life without researching and ended up regretting the splurge.
Julien: You can find great deals online and save a ton of money and still look great. The hallmark of great style isn’t necessarily an expensive price tag, but really how you wear and accessorize an outfit.
Landyn: I really wish I knew then even half as much about luxury resale as I do now. I adored my Marion and I got years out of her, though in retrospect, I think it would have been worth saving a little extra and going with a different designer that would have retained its value down the road.
Looking back, do you think you made the right choice?
Anais: I don’t believe in wrong choices — at the time, it was something I truly wanted. That’s the beauty of the buyback program, too. You can always sell and invest in something new.
Julien: Totally! Absolutely no regrets when it comes to Balenciaga.
Landyn: Looking back, I’d say yes — I did. No regrets.