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Page 2 in the conversation "Your Most-Coveted High End" by Jenn
Like Suz, I don't yearn for any particular item or brand, but I do crave luxurious fabrications of silk and cashmere. Good silks and cashmeres. I shop silks and cashmeres every chance I get.
Truthfully though over ninety percent of the cashmeres I tried last year were scratchy (like cheap wool). I never give up though.
No particular brand sings out to me more than others -- for me, it's the lure of specific ITEMS.
I guess my sort of gateway purchase was the teal Burberry Diana mentions. Granted, it's among the lower tiered Burberry pieces (the Brit line), but it was still a lot to pay for a trench coat for someone who doesn't wear trenches often. Still, the color sang out to me and it's so classic in cut that I'll keep it and wear it forever.
Another significant splurge, and probably my most successful (in terms of CPW), is my IRO blue leather moto jacket. Again, I think it has enough longevity that I'll wear it until it falls apart.
The Valentino Rockstuds were another biggie. I am a little worried that they'll look "so 2010" in another 5-10 years, but in a way I really don't care because they are a great solution for a dressed-up shoe for someone who loves studs and a little bit of refined rocker edge. They are so comfortable they will be my go-to dressy shoe for some time to come. I'm praying they remain sort of classic rock-chic rather than end up looking hopelessly dated a few years from now.
I blundered a few years ago with a splurge on some Jimmy Choo peep-toe pumps. They were worn twice, killed my feet, and I sold them on eBay. I've made some similar mistakes with high-end purchases, but mostly dresses (DVF, etc.) that I then "grew out of" when I gained weight back.
So these days my splurges (which are becoming fewer and further between anyway) in high-end items are most likely to remain footwear and jackets, and maybe a bag. Jackets seem to fit me fine within a 10-lb weight gain or loss, and of course shoes always fit. I don't care what the label is, as long as it's a fab piece that I love that fits my body and my style well.
Janet, don't you have that amazing oil slick jacket? I could see someone wearing that practically forever. Don't recall whether it was expensive, though.
Vildy, I'm not sure what jacket you mean?
Jenn, I'm standing right beside you ogling the Burbery trenches
Janet, maybe I'm remembering it wrong and it's not a jacket. Maybe it's a coat? Anyway, I remember some link between your photography and what surfaces you sometimes like to photograph and that "jacket."
My most expensive items are also workhorse pieces that I absolutely love and feel great in every time I put them on:
A navy Burberry Brit jacket with a pleated back peplum (I am such a sucker for a pleated peplum) that I found on a huge sale last winter. It's a very short jacket, but it works perfectly on my very short waist. It's navy, which is a staple color for me, and it's made beautifully with good structure.
The Smythe jacket purchased during NAS two years ago. Good lord, I love this blazer. It's equestrian! It has elbow patches! It has a double-vented flippy back! The tailoring is impeccable and it fits like a dream. It goes with jeans and dressier pants. Even at the NAS price I gulped when I bought it but I've never regretted the purchase. Angie and I are jacket twins and I think a few other YLF members bought this too.
My beloved Aquatalia boots. I first saw these on Kate Middleton when I was deep in the frustrating throes of searching for boots that would fit narrow calves. I figured if Aquatalia fit her slender legs, surely they would fit mine. So I bought a pair and have never looked back. They fit as if custom, are waterproof, and are super comfortable.
I also have a long navy Mackage coat. It also has great tailoring, well considered details, and will go the extra mile.
Like lots of you, my fantasy list includes a Burberry trench. I'd also love a Cartier tank watch!
I actually have a Burberry trench and I love it though it's not one any of you would be likely to want. It's a man's trench and belonged to the very short father of an acquaintance and I picked it up at a yard sale she had for two dollars. I feel like the leading lady in a romantic spy movie in it.
My highest end item is probably a Max Mara camel coat, part alpaca wool so it's warm but very light. I bought it at a severely reduced price when a nearby boutique closed down.
As an aside, my friend owns a classic Burberry which she made entirely herself - making one from scratch (and thus familiarizing herself with the production process) was part of her induction when she joined the company as a young management trainee. Decades later, she still wears it and it looks as good as ever.
I have a Burberry trench. I bought it in the 1980s, when I was in my 20s. I bought it in the January sales in London at the flagship store. The exchange rate was good, but it was still a big splurge at the time on my very small income and it made me feel fab, but I'm pretty sure no one every knew how wonderful my coat was supposed to be, lol. This was when they cost US $400, in the US. I still have it, and it still fits, but the length is mid-calf, and it feels frumpy now. But I still love it and it is like a pet. I have a couple of high end watches, a vintage Rolex, which, like all vintage Rolexes, only sort of keeps time (and in the safety deposit box) and a heavy, chunky stainless Breitling that was a gift, not a personal choice, but I wore it faithfully for years and years. And 99% of the time I wear my fitness tracker. I mainly wear it when I'm doing public speaking, because I can track my time at a glance while talking away with an analog watch, but not at all with a digital display.
What I would like would be a current Burberry coat, and a really nice purse, maybe a second hand Channel.
Oh, Vildy, I think you're thinking of my Philip Lim vest! Yes, that counts too. Very funky and distinctive, but probably timeless in its "arty-ness."
Frances, I'm awed at your friend's having made her own Burberry coat.
AND that brings us to NAS. I am so excited this year. By June 30th, I will have paid for two major house renovations!!! YAY.
And I yearn to splurge on something for me. Something fun. Something that I would not normally buy. I am literally counting the days until the non-Nordstrom credit card holders can shop. I will be shopping via YLF as the credit card holders show their caches. I will be buying when Nordstroms finally allows me access.
Yes Suz the Burberry trench was made for me. It takes everything up a notch. I also splurged on a silver cuff when I decided to retire. I wear it a lot in my WIW. I will take a picture and post. The artisan makes jewellery and engraves poetry on it. Some is her own and some is others. Including Leonard Cohen's "There is a crack in everything...." I really wanted that one but it was way over my price range.
Like BrieN I have been coveting the Paul Green 'Cayanne's. I can't really justify them given all the summer shoes/sandals I own but if ever I saw a pair on sale I might change my mind.
Sterling, yes! I don't know if I'll buy anything during NAS, but I will have my eyes open for any items on my list for this fall's "less but better" strategy.
Those Paul Green Cayanne booties make my mouth water.
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I'm seriously coveting these Rick Owens sock boots. The other kind are just too far out of my price range. This is pretty close to becoming an obsession for me.
oops, forgot the picture.
Again, the Paul Greens are on Ebay - I just got a pair for $149!
I want to know why they are all over eBay . Are they secretly really uncomfortable ? I'm suspicious - even though I want /need exactly this shoe.
The Paul Greens are on ebay! I am a bit suspicious too. I would like a pair of high end booties. Paul Greens maybe.
Mine are totally comfortable, FWIW. I can't see a reason to sell mine. *clutches shoes to her chest*
You know, the Paul Green discussion reminds me of my other big leap in high-end footwear: the LD Tuttle sandals. I remember gulping as I hit the "buy" button on those shoes -- I never paid much for sandals before that. Sandals are one of those types of footwear that always seemed more "disposable" for some reason. But they are so distinctive, comfortable, and well-made that I have worn them a ton and gotten every penny's worth out of them. They still get compliments and questions every time I wear them. Have no idea what the CPW is, but whatever it is, it's a bargain in the long run. For better or for worse, those shoes increased my threshold for what I'm willing to spend on a great pair of sandals.
The Freebirds have actually taken some of the stress off of these sandals. I know other people don't like to "split wears" but I'm happy to not rely too heavily on one favorite item, and I'm glad I'm taking some wear and tear off the Tuttles so they'll last longer.
I remember my high-end splurges so distinctly for the particular times in my life that they occurred.
This has been a really interesting question to ponder. I guess I am not into high-end fashion because -- even if price were no object -- I can't think of a thing. Unless, maybe if you consider it an 'accessory', I have coveted a 12-string Martin guitar since the mid-70s.
A small epiphany: it's not so much that I covet high end items just because of the name brand and they are high end - it's that what I tend to like is hard to find inexpensively. I think it is a bit easier to find classic and boho items at all price points because they are popular and sell well. It's much harder to find an R13 or Rick Owens-type look for less, at least for me. What are your thoughts on this theory?
alaskagirl - I agree. There is edgy off-kilter stuff in a little section in H&M, but it's such crap it's nothing you could build a wardrobe around. Mainstream labels/brands don't knock off the really high end alternative stuff - the market is just that much smaller for it, I guess. I do know this is one reason I am spending more on each piece of clothing I buy now - because a lower-priced version just isn't there.
That makes sense, alaskagirl. My husband teases me that I can walk into any housewares/home decor/furniture store and whatever I point to and say I like will inevitably be the most expensive item in the store. I think there are certain design details that only show up at higher price points.
In terms of fashion, what attracts me to higher-end pieces is really more subtle design details, as well as luxe materials and rock-solid fabrication. When something's meticulously made/designed, you can just tell.
Una, I agree completely. It is somewhat of a niche market, so not a lot of copies. I found a somewhat reasonably priced set of the boots I posted above so I just pulled the trigger. Since I started my 5 piece, one or 2 are reasonably high end. The others are just over my basics threshold by a little. I'm spending about the same amount overall as I did before, but it has enabled me to spend a little more to get "the one"
My fantasy high end purchase would be from Erdem. I'd have to be ready to spend at least $2000 for a dress full price or $1000 for a top, and it would be unlike anything out there in the cheaper stores. His colors, patterns, and tailored cuts are unworldly beautiful and really make me swoon. They're in my dream wardrobe.
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