carrie bradshaw lied closet

I’ve been wanting to put together a post like this for a while. I am all about some luxury pieces, while mixing in lower price points and “looks for less.”  I recently shared a post about high/low mixing here and some of my favorite investment pieces here, but this concept of mixing Target and Chanel will always be something I’m preaching.  You don’t have to spend a million bucks to look like a million bucks!

That being said… I’ve made some (self-proclaimed) excellent luxury purchases and some not as great choices. I thought I would go into further detail of WHY as to hopefully help any of you looking to make a luxury accessory investment!

luxury accessory reviewmanolo blahnik heels

Let’s get the least worn out of the way first, shall we?

 

YSL Sac De Jour

I saw this bag in a department store and immediately absolutely loved it. I love a structured bag. It maintains it’s shape so beautifully and I thought the dark gray would go with everything. When I held the empty bag, it had some weight. I didn’t think too much about it, but once I put in my wallet, knick knacks and so on… it felt like I was carrying a “sac” of bricks.  I later realized the interior was lined with suede and now they make them with a sleek leather interior which cuts the weight at least in half. I actually ended up buying one of the newer designs and love it so much more only because of the weight factor!

SO my advice: if it feels heavy at all when it’s empty? Girrrll… pass.

Gold Hoop Earrings

These hoops actually are from Macy’s and not Tiffany’s – I just keep them in that little duster case because they fit perfectly.

I wanted a pair of quality gold hoops and my mom and I picked these out in college. They’re lightweight, the perfect size and gorgeous.

BUT, because they have a clasp situation instead of a post back… one of them falls out of my ear constantly. I’ve even taken them to a jeweler to see if I could change the design to a post back and he said I couldn’t. It bums me out because otherwise I adore them! In the future I would never invest in a nice pair of earrings that has a push clasp backing (I don’t know the correct term for this!).  Le sigh.

YSL Oil-in-Stick Lipstick

These lipsticks are gorgeous.  But the go on like a chapstick and the pigment doesn’t last more than an hour. Again – they’re beautiful but if you’re actually looking for lip color… pass.

Manolo Blahniks

I got these two pairs of Manolos at the same time and while they are some of the most comfortable designer pumps I own… I rarely reach for them. When they’re on, the leopard looks more like an overall brown and the gray is this blueish-gray that when worn neither looks blue or gray. I’m sure I’m overthinking it, but it just pains me that I splurged on them and rarely wear them!

Christian Louboutin So Kate’s (not pictured – sold)

I mean… these heels are basically a five inch heel with no sole platform at all. It’s like walking on stilts. I could barely stand in them much less walk so I sold them (with a warning that they’re the most uncomfortable heel of all time). I then vowed I’d only buy Louboutins with a 100mm heel. I can’t even pretend to walk in the 120mm!

Gucci Sunglasses (not pictured – sold)

I bought a pair of Gucci sunglasses on a whim in Florida and they just didn’t work for my face shape. They were a different shape than I normally wear and ultimately I never wore them, so they went to a new home.  Now if I splurge on a luxury pair of sunglasses, I make sure I already have and like a similar shape already first!

caviar chanel jumbostuart weitzman ankle strap heelsblack gucci beltlouboutin pigallepink velvet prada bag

Now let’s dig into the most loved items!  I could have added so much more to this list but I really wanted to focus on the crème de la crème.

 

Chanel Jumbo

Christian gave me my first Jumbo bag for my birthday, and it remains my most loved bag in my collection.  It’s a caviar beige leather and such a dreamy bag I know I’ll be wearing for decades. I love it so much I ended up getting a gently used black version of the same bag (full blog post here).

I only go for caviar leather over lambskin because while they’re both beautiful, I am not delicate enough with my bags to maintain lambskin. The caviar leather is definitely more durable!

YSL Wallet on a Chain

When I got this bag from Luisa Via Roma  I had no idea how often I would wear it. You can wear it as a clutch or crossbody and I’ve gotten so much use out of it! They make this little bag in a ton of different colors and I really only have great things to say about it.

Christian Louboutin Pigalle

Now these are Louboutins that I can walk in (shoutout to the 100mm heel). I bought the nude first and then snagged the black. They are easy to keep clean and I probably wear the nude more than the black… but it’s a pretty close race!

Gucci Belt

I bought this belt as my Paris souvenir and I’ve worn it even more than I thought I would. It looks great with denim but I think it looks even more fabulous over a coat or faux fur vest!  Everyone asks me about the sizing and I don’t even know what size mine is… I tried on two and ended up buying the smaller one and added a few extra holes in it using this.  There’s a size chart online – I’d recommend using that!

Chanel Brooches

I bought the big pearl one for myself and then my mom gave me the cz one on my wedding day. If you’re looking for a a smaller sized accessory splurge, I would definitely recommend a brooch. You can put these on blazers, coats, dresses, on top of a tie waist dress.  This might serve some inspiration!

Stuart Weitzman Nudist

I have these in nude and black and you can tell… I wear them a TON. They are the most fabulous strappy sandal I’ve ever had. They look amazing with everything and have that perfect tall-but-not-too-tall stiletto heel. Can’t say enough great things about these.

Prada Cahier Bag

Ok I must confess that neither of these I paid full price for. The pink/red velvet (sadly it’s been sold out) was a Cyber Monday score and the leopard was a gently used bag I had to have!  When making a big purchase, I tend to go solid and neutral so I can get the most wear out of the piece.

I stand by the neutral investment theory, BUT… a patterned piece can be REALLY fun. I’ve been so surprised at how much these two Prada Cahier bags go with, and they definitely get way more attention than any other piece I have.  They’re a great size and I’ve enjoyed them so much more than I thought I would!

olivia culpo marledpigalle heelschanel jumbo handbag

photos by Christian Barnes

sweatshirt | denim (run TTS) | room details in this post

Was this helpful? I hope that my experience with these pieces helped provide a little insight if you’re looking to splurge on a fancy accessory. I try to put a lot of thought into big purchases, but sometimes I still miss the mark. Learn from me so you don’t waste your dollars!

If you can think of any similar topics you’d like to see on this blog, I’d love to hear. I love hearing from you guys! Thanks so much for reading and don’t forget to check out Shopbop and Bloomingdale’s MAJOR sale happening. More details here! XO –

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42 thoughts on “Most and Least Worn Luxury Accessories (and Why!)

  1. Love this post! So helpful – over the past 2 years I’ve recently started getting into designer finds and am so careful about what to invest in and why. I’d add a Burberry trench to this list too, they’re always a classic and hold up beautifully over time!

  2. Great post, thanks! A designer accessory should be versatile and last for a long time. It’s refreshing to hear that you also hate So Kate’s – they are literally the most uncomfortable shoe on the planet! They do look pretty, though….as long as you’re sitting down!

  3. Hi Kathleen! I just have to comment on the earrings, as I too have a pair just like them. I have had the same issue that you described, but I have had luck tightening the clasp that the lever goes down and hooks into. I use a small jewelry pliers (round nose pliers, usually used to bend wire for chain making & wire wrapping) that I bought at a craft store and squeeze the 2 levers back together oh, so, gently. I hope this works for you and that I explained it clearly. Love your blog!

  4. Hi,

    Where did you sell your luxury items, I am looking for a place to offload a few of my pieces, especially the Loubitons so Kate, you are so right, I can t even stan in them either.

    Vanessa

  5. Kathleen this is such an amazing post! I have become a devoted follower as I’ve decided to stop “playing small” in my fashion and kick it up a notch with fun pieces and patterns.

    I would love to see a post about how you clean out your closet and where you sell your pieces, as you mentioned in this post. Do you use poshmark or a similar site? How often do you do a cleanout?

    Xo keep these personal recommendation posts comin!

  6. Great blog post. I need to invest in a few designer bags. I’m so hard on my bags and travel for work so they get tossed around and packed and really “used”. But I will forever love your 2 Prada purses … they were worth the splurge for sure 😉

  7. Love this post! With a bag I think it’s so easy to get distracted by how beautiful it is that it’s easy to forget to think about whether the logistics are going to work for me. Now I make a conscious effort to think about whether I’m happy with the way the compartments are set up, the strap length, the weight (like you said). I’m OK with buying something impractical every once in awhile but if I’m buying a high-end classic I want it to be perfect for me!

  8. What is your opinion of your Chanel Ballet flats? Do you love them or would they be in the pass category? I’m thinking of getting a pair but am still thinking it over. Thanks!

    1. I do love them! I’d recommend trying them on in the store because they don’t have a lot of support or cushion – they are a classic and simple design.

  9. Love the honesty of this post! Luxury purchases can be so intimidating since so much more is on the line if you change your mind, but when a good luxury decision can really dress up even the simplest of outfits. Appreciate how candid you were and your suggestions for how you could have perfected those purchases and made them “wins”.

    I’ve only begun investing in luxury designer pieces in the past two or so years and I’ve definitely had my hits and misses as well. To this day, I still maintain that my two best purchases were my navy and gold Chanel bag (the navy makes it a little more casual but it still makes anything – even leggings – look more chic) and my black Gucci loafers. Those loafers are seriously as comfortable as sneakers so I love that I can wear them when traveling and look super put together, plus they go with EVERYTHING!

    Pretty much all of my misses (or just less worn items) were ones where I was able to find a deal so I splurged even if they weren’t exactly the right size or exactly what I had in mind. I try to remind myself that they still cost A LOT but it can be so tempting and sometimes I am weak!

    xo MK
    http://www.goldhattedlover.com

    1. I have dupes for the loafers but I hear they’re so comfortable so I definitely think they sound like they’re worth the splurge. I think I’m with you on the misses – the impulse purchases sometimes work out for me but not often!

  10. Loved this!! I have been looking at that Gucci belt forever and trying to justify buying it. Go back and forth on which color to buy. Black or the saddle colored one. I tend to wear a lot of nude or neutral colored shoes. I know the belt doesn’t have to match the shoes!!!!:)What do you think? Black is classic I guess. Thanks for all of your great posts. Look forward to them everyday!!

    1. I think this totally depends on what you think you’ll wear most. If it’s not black, don’t buy that color! The saddle is also beautiful and extremely versatile!

  11. Great post! I love reading topics like this that discuss worn and non worn items. It helps me on what to avoid and what to go for, especially with such high priced items. If I’m buying an item that’s the same price as a car, I want to make sure i’m wearing that sucker for a lifetime.

    Tabitha
    https://shopsiloe.com/

  12. I LOVE this post! It’s great to hear your honest thoughts about what didn’t work for you. Most blogs just talk about what they love and what they are buying. I think it’s super useful to know the ins/out and how pieces work/don’t work. Especially when you’re talking about big ticket items. I would love it if you would do this as a regular feature. Even clothing for example….why some piece works and why some others don’t.

    Thank you!

  13. I love this! As someone who has been completely lost in the world of luxury items, this is so helpful. One of the things I find challenging as I approach 30 is trying to find staple pieces that are worth investing in WHILE still trying to develop my own style. I’d LOVE to see more from you like this. Where do I even start!? Bags? Shoes? What’s a good “entry point” to more expensive, luxury fashion. P.S – HOW do you get the confidence to go into these stores because that’s honestly half my battle.

    1. First of all, you shouldn’t be shy to peruse in any of these stores because YOU are a customer and if someone working there is rude then they don’t deserve the commission from your sale! So please don’t let that affect you! Love your suggestions. I’m going to think of how I can expand this category!

  14. I lOVVVEEE this post! Thank you for sharing! I always admire your hard work and how you reward yourself with the most gorgeous practical designer pieces! 🙂

    toreystreasures.com
    @toreystreasures

  15. Great article! I’ve alwags wondered how people walk in Loubotins so I’m glad I’m not the only way one that wasn’t born with the pain tolerance of a super model!

  16. I got the black Pigalles for graduation this year and already am so glad I went with them and not any of the more intense styles! Maybe I’ll convince my parents to splurge on the YSL wallet bag for the next graduation 🙂

  17. Yes this was so helpful! I love my black and beige Nudist Heels as well my pink Pigalle heel. When you wear them a few times they pay for themselves. Sometimes a great investment saves you money in the long run.

  18. Great post! I’ve been eyeing a couple gently used Chanel bags and I would have never thought about which material to get. Can you do one of these for designer jewelry items as well?? I was going to get a Hermes bangle a couple years ago but a sorority sister said they’re not worth it. I’d love your opinion on jewelry investment pieces!

  19. Found this to be super helpful.
    I’ve purchased two designer handbags
    And love them equally, both of which
    Are neutral so after reading this I’d love
    To venture out and get a patterned one.
    Thank you!

  20. SO helpful!! I have been considering a YSL wallet on a chain for months and wasn’t sure if I would use it enough to justify! Now just need to pick a color!

  21. Thank you for this!! Always good to hear what other people think about their splurges. My Gucci soho bag is used all the time….my LV neverfull tote not so much!! I too am a 100mm CL gal I totally agree….couple statement pieces but highstreet all the way. Love your posts.
    From one RHOBH fan to another. Katie (Scotland) xx

  22. Love this post so much, Kathleen! Question: Which size hole punch did you use on the Gucci belt? I just bought a Gucci belt and was planning to take it a cobbler for the extra holes. But now that you shared the Amazon link, I’m thinking of buying the puncher and doing it myself. Any tips so I don’t destroy the belt are appreciated!