Buying Secondhand — How Do I Know This Designerbag Is Real?


Around this year, shopping secondhand is popular then ever. The trend of buying vintage has grown out into a lifestyle. Not only it’s good for the environment, it somehow gives a lot of people (like me) the opportunity to shop a designer item. Talking about giving those precious pieces a good retired life!

In Belgium and Holland there a lot of good secondhand platforms that sell very fashionable items. They make sure they follow strict rules about the quality, authenticity and prices.
But lately you can find a lot of Instagram accounts, where they are selling gorgeous, vintage accessories. How much we adore this, the prices are very reasonable, so reasonable that we aren’t sure sometimes about the authenticity.

Before you go shopping, make sure you read these tips so you invest your money in the right causes.


The fabric betrays a lot if the item is a replica or an unique piece. Designers make use of high quality leather. Smell, feel and look. Real leather is smooth, soft but dry.
A replica feels most of the time like plastic, is stiff or feels greasy.


Like I always say “It is in the details!”. When you have an unique piece in front you every little details needs to be right. All the seams need to be the same, the logo, patterns and other details need to be correct. Everything has to be done with perfection.


Almost all brands have hardware with their initials in it, so pay attention to this. Zippers have to open-and close smoothly and all the hardware and zipper needs to have the same color. If this isn’t the case there is a 90% you have a replica in front of you.


You can see a lot of signs when something is authentic or when it is a replica on the outside. The inside of a handbag also says more than 1000 words. Designers do everything very correctly — pay attention to the fabric that has been used inside, are all the patch pockets straight lined? Does it have the same perfection as the outside? If so, then it probably is a real designer item.


In this time it is very hard to recognize a replica because there are so many ways to recreate the real designers pieces, so the little details are hard to find. With every authentic item, there comes a warranty card. Your source is very important, so do not ever forget to ask this!


When doubt, there are a couple of things you can do to make sure you buy the right item.
– Most people who have ever buy a designer piece, also keep the dust bag, warranty card, sometimes box and proof of payment. Make sure you ask.- When they give you a warranty number, you can insert that information via different links on Google, so you can check if this number actually exist and isn’t fake.

– Make sure you check who you are buying from and where they get the item

– The official websites of designers also have more information about how they sell there handbags, you can inform yourself at any time.



P.S. wondering why I know these things?
A couple of years ago I did an internship at Labellov. Number 1 secondhand designer items platform in Antwerp / Belgium. They learned me everything, I could learn about authenticity and other things, in the time I was there.

Beside that: my parents have been self-employed almost their whole life. Together they produced furniture and other interior items. Until this day my father has a lot of knowledge about leather and other fabrics, which comes in very handy.




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kiki vogels

Welcome to A way of dreaming! Your online style diary with useful and interesting tips and tricks, carefully written and curated by me! The 26y old Fashion Stylist who loves to share her knowledge, love and likes to inspire people.

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