Buying anything pre-loved definitely requires a bit of extra work and patience but is well worth it, in my opinion at least. Purchasing pre-loved bags, shoes and accessories online is far easier than clothing. I know my shoe size in my favourite brands and there’s no risk that a bag or bracelet won’t fit.
That said, you can certainly find great discounts when buying pre-loved clothing. Clothes don’t hold their value like a well-looked after Birkin Touch Vert Cypress Togo Matte Alligator 25 Tote (I love this bag, it’s absolutely stunning in person).
Buying something sight unseen and generally with no returns policy (there are a few exceptions, which I will do a separate post on later) can be offputting; however, I have found these steps make it easier.
🔑 The Keys to Success
1. Keep records of your sizes for each clothing category for your designers
2. Get to know your sizing in your favourite designers
3. Find an amazing seamstress!
4. Read size guides
I’ll cover numbers one and two in today’s post.
📏 Sort Your Size
Certainly the most daunting and time-consuming of these points. I suggest starting with a small and manageable project – put together a spreadsheet of your top five shoe designers and note your size in four shoe categories – flats, heels, mules, and boots. If you don’t know this information, treat yourself to an afternoon of window shopping at your nearest department store and try on each style with each designer.
🗒 Take Notes
It’s helpful to have this information on hand as I find sizing varies. I’m generally a 38 but always wear a 37.5 in Jimmy Choo Romy pumps and in any heeled shoe from Aquazzura I wear a 38.5. In my Chanel mules, I went all the way up to a 39. Once you realise you can sort shoe sizes in just a few hours, clothing won’t seem as overwhelming.
👗 Next, Clothes
The same principle applies to clothes, start a spreadsheet and take note when you’re trying things on. Sizing obviously varies for each designer and depending on your body shape you may require different sizes in different items.
For example, in Dolce & Gabbana I’m consistently a size 40 in skirts. In tops without buttons, I’m also a 40 but if it’s a button-up blouse I may go up to a 42 to avoid any risk of pulling around the chest.
I won’t continue to bore everyone with the details of my sizing but I hope this conveys the general idea: try on clothes from designers you love, take notes, buy said designer clothes at a lower price.
There is always some risk when buying preloved online. If something really doesn’t work out Vestiaire has a feature where you can automatically relist the item for sale without going through the fuss of creating a new listing on your own.
That said, some of my favourite and most treasured items in my wardrobe (like this skirt!) I purchased from Vestiaire. All in perfect condition and for a small fraction of the RRP.