What is the first thing you notice as you enter your favorite Hermès or Chanel boutique? The handbag everyone is carrying of course. But do you notice their clothes, shoes, or accessories as well? Perhaps they are wearing head to toe labels. Alternatively maybe it’s a post-hot yoga pop in.
As a devoted handbag lover, getting a new bag from our favorite design house will never get old. But it’s also becoming harder. Unfortunately, the days of walking into a boutique and impulsively grabbing the newest hot bag are gone. At least for now. So how do we make this happen?
Showing Loyalty to the Brand
The obvious way to show loyalty to your favorite luxury brand is to wear the clothes, shoes and accessories while shopping in the boutique. Some customers dress head to toe designer, while others carry only their Birkin, Kelly or classic flap to shop.
However, this begs the question: whether you feel compelled to wear the designer’s clothes or accessories while luxury shopping. Perhaps you perceive an advantage to dressing in the designer’s label. Or think it improves your status as a trusted client. Possibly it proves your loyalty to the brand. Let’s discuss. . . But either way it sure doesn’t hurt to dress head to toe in a label and feel special.
What to Wear While Shopping
There are shoppers who dress as though it is a special occasion every day. They plan outfits in advance, coordinate their bag of the day (botd), and deliberately incorporate as many designer pieces as possible into the ensemble.
Others sport athletic wear on the daily, day to night. Whether driving the kids to school, grocery shopping, taking an exercise class, or shopping in a luxury boutique, it is Lululemon or Alo all day every day.
Truthfully though, most shoppers dress casually in non-luxury designer clothes or business attire. Some find it takes a lot of planning to wear luxury pieces every day. The key is to show your individual style and to own it. Whether you wear only high end pieces, mix high and low pieces together, or wear jeans and a t-shirt, it all works.
The Sale Associates’ View
Sales Associates do notice what a customer is wearing when they enter the store. They are immersed in the brand all day and probably do not even realize they are sizing up the customer strolling in the door. Certainly it is not a prerequisite to getting good service, but unconsciously it likely helps them better understand the customer’s style. Although SA’s treat everyone the same, they do enjoy seeing how clients style the designer pieces they purchase.
Now, let’s take you away from your local store and head abroad. If you are traveling and shop at Chanel or Hermès, do you intentionally show your love of the brand by dressing in their label? Some think it suggests you are interested in purchasing rather than just browsing. And maybe you find the SAs more attentive.
What is your personal style? Do you intentionally carry a Chanel or Hermès handbag, or wear the designer clothing, shoes, and accessories to shop at your favorite luxury boutique? Maybe you save those luxury pieces for special occasions and date nights. We’d like to hear what you’ve experienced. How you describe your style. Whether you sport Hermès for a visit to the orange boutique And Chanel for a trip to Coco’s house. And more importantly, whether you think it impacts the way you are treated when shopping.
Our guess – and experience – is it has very little, if any, effect. We can regale you with stories of purchasing Birkins in sweats or not getting sales assistance for classic flaps even when wearing head to toe Chanel, and we might add, vice versa. So, although we all love to shop, our attire usually does not impact the ability to purchase the new, hottest, hard-to-get luxury handbag.
Does It Matter What You Wear While Shopping?
Ultimately, it is not how you dress, but how much you spend. Being a loyal spending customer and having a good relationship with your SA seem to be key factors.
On the other hand, after two years of (on and off) sheltering in place, then your luxury pieces have not received the exposure they deserve. Your treasures likely have turned into mere closet ornaments. As a result, any opportunity to use and wear your luxury items is probably welcome. So, now is the time to show them off . . . Don’t wait for a special occasion.
Whether or not wearing your luxury clothes gets you better service or access to the most sought after handbags is irrelevant if wearing them makes you happy. Because isn’t that what shopping is all about?
What we really want to know . . . is what you do! Consider these three shopper styles then take our Reader’s Poll. Do any describe you?
Madame Shopper A:
She travels all over the world. Has a healthy budget. Wears exclusively Chanel ready to wear (RTW) and accessories, and carries mostly Birkins, Kellys or Chanel classic flaps. Has relationships with her local SA’s but not outside her home town.
Madame Shopper B:
Loves to shop. Lives in a major US city. Is not loyal to one SA or one particular boutique because there are a few to choose from within a reasonable distance of each other. Does not wear any of her luxury pieces while shopping but wears them for events and parties.
Madame Shopper C:
Is loyal to her local Chanel and Hermès boutique. But loves to shop in other cities or countries. Always dresses in designer RTW and accessories when shopping. And has good relationships with several SA’s.
So, who is your shopping spirit? Are you Madame A, B, or C? Conversely, do you have a completely different approach. We want to know!
Updated: February 25th, 2022