Louis Vuitton Haute Maroquinerie

Thursday, 25 April 2013
Celest&Marlene
Outfit: Alexander Wang t-shirt (U.S here), Rick Owens biker jacket, Hermes belt (hidden), Zara boyfriend jeans, Hermes Cape Cod watch, Hermes Kelly (or here) and Halogen Bianca wedges

A few weeks ago, I was invited by a Louis Vuitton sales associate to take a look at Louis Vuitton Haute Maroquinerie (which directly translates to high leather goods) at the maison on Bond St. I decided to wait until my friend, Celest (who's an awesome bridalwear designer based in Asia and garnering a lot of hot press) arrived in London cos bag shopping is way more fun with a girlfriend, particularly one who's as bag crazy as I am. 

We were ushered upstairs through a lift which zipped us up to the top floor and then through to a lounge where large pieces of leather were displayed hanging on the wall. It's all done rather hush hush, by invitation only with an appointment to suit the client. I'm jaded enough to say that it's a marketing ploy to showcase the exclusivity of the handbag equivalent of haute couture - a massive push by Bernard Arnault to compete with Hermes. The customer service is exceptional - friendly and informative which is a nice and welcoming change to the snobby and patronizing attitude displayed by a number of Hermes sales associates at the Sloane St store.

Photography isn't allowed which is a bit of shame as everything has to go through to their press department for approval. The bespoke service allows customization of 5 bags - Milaris (Milan + Paris = Milaris), Neo Steamer, Noe, Lockit and Triangle where the client is given the option to choose the exterior leather and lining (lambskin or goatskin). Prices start from £4500 upwards. Bags made in crocodile skin came with a price tag similar to that of a nice compact Toyota. We mentioned this to Celest's husband whose face turned ashen, gasped and for once, was speechless, a condition which unfortunately lasted only 2 minutes (it was quite an achievement if you know him rather well).

The Milaris looked eerily like an Hermes Lindy. Hmmm..... The only bag which appealed to both of us was the Noe which came with a handle and an additional strap. Let me break down the pros and cons of this bag.

Pros 
1. beautiful luxurious leather comes in a nice selection of droolworthy colors
2. additional strap which is long enough for those who prefer to wear their bag crossbody
3. 4 feet on the base to protect the bag

Cons
1. the handle that is too long for hand carry and too short to be worn over the shoulder especially if you're wearing a coat.
2. the strap isn't adjustable. This just doesn't make sense particularly for a bespoke bag.
3. the thread used for stitches is a little too thin for my liking. I prefer thicker and sturdier threads as well as double stitching to ensure durability.
4. if I pay £4500 for a bag, I would like a handmade bag which is hand-stitched inside out, not machine stitched.
5. after sales service is a selling point for most people. I'm waiting to hear back from the sales associates in regards to this.

Verdict: I am impressed with the service but not enough with the handbag itself to fork out a sum equivalent to that of an Hermes Kelly for a bespoke Louis Vuitton bag. BUT who knows, I may change my mind if they tweak the designs more and offer a wider selection of customization instead of the current 5 models.






18 comments:

  1. Great review. Love that it's thorough and extremely honest. Most people go ga-ga over LV for no reason at all - label love, I guess. I like that you listed both pro's and con's. And you are so right. If there are so many cons, it's not worth the price tag.

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  2. You cute girls. I always love how you team your boyfriend jeans with patent-shiny shoes and a slick jacket. You always get it right -- and man! you live the life! Love it!!! (and love your pal's orange peaking under the jacket)

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  3. Oh how amazing! You are handbag royalty....what a fab experience. And I agree re the outfit. Effortless. And about Celest's orange - looks stunning. So glad you had a great girlie day xx

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    1. LOL "handbag royalty" love it!

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    2. Hahaha.... I'm no handbag royalty. I was invited despite the fact that I was adamant I was not going to buy.

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  4. You are bang on about everything. Great post and I can say I know "handbag royalty", even if it is only virtually.

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  5. What fun!!! It's funny, because I was just thinking about the Noe bag. I've always liked it and it's such a classic. But I'd be happy with a regular stock version. :)

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  6. You can still buy a Noe or Petite Noe on the resale market for a fraction of the price, esp. in epi leather.

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    1. Totally. I couldn't agree more. Whilst the leather for the custom order Noe is beautiful but it's certainly not worth £4500.

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  7. Hello. I want to ask a question about your 28 kelly. So you can wear it cross body? Is it the orginal strap or you ordered one?

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    1. Hiya, I always wear it cross body. Yes, it's the original strap. Hope this helps.

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  8. You and your friend are both beautiful! What a fun experience - I can totally see them competing with Hermes on this one, if you do end up ordering I look forward to following along on the experience!

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  9. Oh to be invited to something like that is my dream Marlene, how exciting! Love that your honest in your reviews of it, if your spending that much, it has to be worth it. x

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  10. sounds like a really fun experience!!! bwahahahha price of a Toyota :O

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  11. I bet the two of you had a brilliant time. Thanks for the honest feedback! I always trust you to be open minded and true with your blog posts. It's so refreshing to see the pro's and con's rather than just endorsements which some blogs do.

    - Mandi
    Find Me A Muse

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  12. hey I always love your outfits, but I think your hair and glasses somewhat age your look, any thoughts on updating them?

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    Replies
    1. I am beyond clueless about hairstyles. I'd love to hear your recommendations on glasses and hair.

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