Second-hand goods are nothing new, but an emerging trend driven largely by Millennials and Gen Z, is seeing a mainstream acceptance of previously loved and owned fashion, and the luxury market is not excluded.
- The future of many people’s cupboards has come under review as a result of casual, stay-at-home living.
- With an abundance of reproduced and fake luxury items circulating in the market, fashionista’s can often be caught off-guard by a counterfeit.
- Louis Vuitton, Gucci, Chanel, Hermès, and Prada are just some of the pre-owned luxury items now sold by Luxity, a luxury reseller of authentic items, that has opened a new store in Nelson Mandela Square.
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An increasing group of fashion-forward shoppers pre-pandemic were starting to look at their collection of closet classics not only as an outward expression of status and style but as investments. Those Versace Sneakers or Dolce & Gabbana handbag priced in the thousands, that would travel on overseas trips and weekend brunches, have had to spend their own time in wardrobe lockdown. Now, many are turning to the pre-owned retail market, both online and offline, to turn their fash into cash!
In Sandton, the new Luxity store is both a destination point where luxury goods are sold and owners can come to sell their pre-owned designer items, provided they are in great condition. All items get inspected by Luxity’s team of experts qualified to do the authentication process that is required and sellers can expect an offer sent to them within two business days. Customers can also request for a particular item/s that they have spotted online to be sent to a specific store where they can come in for a closer look.
Conceived five years ago by Michael Zahariev and business partner Luke Calitz, Luxity was inspired by the potential to fulfill the passions of stylish South African women, who value designer collectibles.
Luke, shared his 5 secrets to making sure you are buying an authentic luxury item:
IT’S IN THE CRAFTSMANSHIP
Besides using genuine leather and quality materials for elements such as hardware, zips, and trims, luxury brands also add hidden elements to their designs to look out for. This can be found in the form of codes (usually available online) that include stamps and stitch counts, authentic serial numbers, model numbers, or even the weight of the item will, in some cases, be documented.
PACKAGING IS KEY
The packaging is one of the first indicators of fake ‘designer’ items. A-grade fakes tend to copy the packaging in order to seem more original but often get it wrong by adding extra features or missing out on the finer details. Plastic packaging is a big red flag. It is easy to be fooled into thinking an item is ‘new’ when it is wrapped in tissue paper or plastic wrapping. However, designer brands seldom wrap anything in plastic. Because every touchpoint is valued by a luxury brand, the packaging will be luxurious as well. For example, Louis Vuitton shopping bags and boxes are only covered in raw cotton material which is how they convey their commitment to luxury and sustainability.
USE LOGIC – IF IT SEEMS TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE, IT USUALLY IS
If someone is trying to sell you a designer bag that normally sells for R10’000 for R500, you can already tell that something is fishy. Nobody who bought an original would sell it for that price. Likewise, designer brands seldom have too many options to choose from. As a result, various size, design, and colour options are an indicator that the items might be counterfeit.
CHECK IF THE DESIGN ACTUALLY EXISTS
By visiting the brand’s websites you will see if the style actually exists, however, brands often only carry current ranges. One can also use legitimate resellers’ websites such as Luxity to see if the item and its style has been previously produced by those brands. If you are considering investing in luxury, it is worth spending time getting to know their style. It will also help you choose something you really love.
BUY FROM LEGITIMATE SOURCES
Many brands such as Prada, Chanel are not available new in South Africa, and they don’t allow other retailers to stock their goods new. Therefore, if a person or store suddenly has a multitude of items from these brands, ask yourself why. Besides buying from the brand itself and when looking to purchase a brand that is not available in your country one should consider avoiding shopping from the classifieds.
The Luxity store at Melrose Arch was moved to the larger store in Nelson Mandela Square, while the boutique in the Cape Quarter Lifestyle Village remains a destination for luxury lovers in the Western Cape.
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