How to Get Vera Bradley Handbags For Practically Nothing

So you love Vera Bradley but you don’t feel like mortgaging your house just to have the newest handbags or pattern they have made. Don’t worry, you don’t have to pay full price for everything. And perhaps with the money you save on getting a purse for less you will be able to buy at least another gallon of gasoline.

First off, try not to buy Vera Bradley from a novelty shop or a store in the mall. Their prices will always be as high as they can make them. Once in a while they will have sales, but unless you are willing to fight off all the other shoppers and brag about your bruises the next day I suggest you move on.

Secondly, keep your eyes open. A friend of mine bought a Mesa Red Vera Bradley purse for only 50 cents! Yeah, I know, that’s what I said. Some people just don’t realize what treasures they have. It was a yard sale and it was early in the morning and the poor dear people who were putting on the yard sale could not have possibly known that those purses go for at least $30.00 or more. It was used, but in perfect condition.

Now, not all of us are going to find deals like that out there, but try not to be overcome with jealousy. It’s always worth a look. There are some that absolutely detest the quilted patterns in these purses but perhaps they bought one just because their friends had them. They may be willing to part with that handbag for less.

Another great option is to shop for Vera Bradley online. More and more stores are popping up all the time and the deals on these purses can be amazing. Not only that, but the selection is much more extensive than most novelty shops as well. You can buy umbrellas, towels, stationary, lamp shades, placemats, dog leashes, pet carriers, hair accessories, and yes, the list goes on and on.

The only big problem with shopping online for Vera Bradley is that after you make that purchase with the click of the mouse, you still don’t have a purse in your hands, and you must be patient. But it is always rewarding when it finally comes to your doorstep and it might just be like Christmas all over again, especially if you found a great deal on a pattern retired long ago. Your friends will be dying to know how you got your hands on such a rare handbag.

There are some stores that have partnered with ebay and they make it very easy to navigate their stores and find exactly what you are looking for. Of course, in the end you are dealing with a person who is selling something on ebay but they have been tested and tried many years and I personally have not had any major issues at all buying with ebay. As a matter of fact, I will usually look on ebay first before buying anything, because I love a good deal just as much as anyone.

To buy some Vera Bradley patterns and styles check out http://www.BuythatPurse.com

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Buying Authentic and Replica Designer Handbags Online

If you intend to buy authentic and replica designer handbags online, you need to take necessary steps to ensure that what you are getting are quality handbags and not getting yourself duped in the process.

The first thing you need to do is to watch for photographs of the handbags on offer. If there is only one photo, you should skip and look for another one. A lack of photographs not only looks suspicious but it does not give you a chance to really look at the handbag you intend to buy.

The best ones include those that show the handbag on offer at all angles. This way you get to look at the tell-tale signs of an authentic designer or replica handbag by looking at things like serial numbers, zippers and designer logos. Also, look out for the stitching and difference in colors.

Do not be fooled by the price either. A handbag which looks cheap will probably be priced cheap as well. Perhaps adding another 50 dollars for another bag you see can let you have something that is of a better quality. Authentic handbags usually do not come cheap while replica designer bags or purses can save you a lot of money while still looking like the real thing. The only thing is getting duped to buy non-quality bags.

If you find a bag which you like very much but only shows one photo and having vague descriptions, you can always ask the seller a question as some of these sellers are genuinely selling their collection of handbags but just do not know how to project their message across online. It does not hurt to ask them either and from their response they could probably send you some more pictures and more detailed descriptions of the handbag trying to sell.

There are online retailers which only show you original catalogue pictures of the bags which tell that they are either lazy or not genuine. Refrain from buying from them and go to another seller. You do not want to receive a handbag which appears different from the one you see online. Some of these sellers merely use the original catalogue photos to entice you to buy but in the end you do not get what you wanted.

Buying authentic and replica designer handbags online can be a fun and mesmerizing experience but you have to ensure you take some time to do a little homework which can save you from a lot of trouble later however do not let this hamper your online buying experience. It beats going to the mall anytime.

Now you can get designer handbags at discounted prices without having to leave the comfort of your home.

GetDesignerHandbags.com is your one-stop discount designer handbags resource. We provide a large selection of discount designer handbags and discount designer purses. Visit us online and choose from a wide range of authentic designer handbags.

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How to Buy and Choose a Designer Handbag – Follow Your Personality

Are you keeping up with the fashion of the trendy and trying to amass a sweet collection of elegant designer handbags? Then you will need to choose the right handbag that suits your personified lifestyle. Let me help you make your choices a lot easier.

You and I know that we women find it difficult sometimes to choose a designer handbag that is just right for us. The problem is there is no right or wrong handbag. It is how we intend to make use of it. Do we want something that we can carry along anything we desire for any outing or just a simple tote to fit some accessories and our precious purse. Perhaps it is best to do a personality check.

Have you ever wondered what you usually bring along with you every time you leave home? Are they just your purse and home keys? Ok, we have a slight ego. Please add car keys if any. How about a mobile phone? I sure would not miss my makeup but what about you? Ask yourself if there is anything that you never lug around.

If you like to dress casually and are always in a relaxed mood, you will need something comfortable. Go for a designer handbag that is simple and small. This way you would never end up squeezing your style. Some great choices would be messenger-type handbags or simply something over-the-shoulders to keep that chic look.

If you are like most women nowadays who run hectic schedules, you’d probably need a classic. As you are always moving about, you will need a designer handbag with a lot of functions. Notably those that have multiple pockets will suit your busy lifestyle

Lastly, if you are like me who go after solid, trendy fashion and always go after style than practicality, you need a big designer handbag. Why? Well, our vanity tells us that we should flaunt what we have and that includes our lovely handbags. I’d rather not be carrying something old fashioned.

Here’s a tip to stay on top of things or our handbags for that matter. Keep them organized at all times and never carry something that you do not need for the day. Go through your handbag on a monthly basis and get rid of those ugly dining receipts and re-arrange the makeup kit which always tends to fall apart. I’m guilty.

Enough said. Now go get that handbag girl! Another secret. I find great handbag deals online and save a bunch all the time.

Now you can get cheap designer handbags without having to leave the comfort of your home.

GetDesignerHandbags.com is your one-stop discount designer handbags resource. We provide a large selection of discount designer handbags and discount designer purses. Visit us online and choose from a wide range of authentic designer handbags.

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Designer Handbags at Any Price?

How much is too much to spend on a designer hand bag? An Hermes’ Birkin just sold at auction for more than $80,000. Is that too much to pay? It was made of genuine crocodile and had a diamond studded clasp, still too much? Believe it or not, that is not the most expensive bag available, not even close. Forbes recently put out a list of the world’s most expensive handbags, at $80,000 that silver Birkin did not even make the top 5.

So what is the phenomenon with outrageously priced designer bags? Is there any limit to their extraordinary prices or to their appeal. Well, I guess that depends on who you ask. I don’t think my mom ever paid more than thirty or forty dollars for a hand bag. She seems perfectly happy and always has a place for her wallet, pack of Kleenex and her cell phone. It does the job. I can’t imagine my mom ever looking longingly at someone else’s Louis Vuitton tote. She is too much of a practical Yankee to ever consider spending hundreds never mind thousands on something so unimportant.

Yet for others the hand bag takes precedent over everything else. I once witnessed a mother rebuke her teenage daughter for spending $450 on several articles of rather practical clothing saying, “Four hundred and fifty dollars! You could have bought a hand bag for that much!” When did this turn take place? When did a handbag become more important than back to school clothes? When did teens become the sensible ones and adults go over the deep end?

Obviously the women who can afford to spend tens of thousands or even hundreds of thousands on a single handbag live in world very different than the rest of us, with their own motives and rationale that the rest of us may never understand.

So what about the rest of us? Those of us that are willing to save our money or cut our budgets elsewhere so we can afford a Louis Vuitton or a Coach bag, how do we know what’s a good investment and what’s just paying too much? A classic handbag in a neutral color is going to give you more mileage than a trendy bag in a seasonal color way. You’re paying not only for the name but for the design and most of these bags are designed with great attention to detail. The perfect bag for you is one that suits all your needs, not only aesthetic. It should be of a size and shape that’s fits you comfortably. Most women are more comfortable with a bag they can carry on their shoulder and that is slim enough to sit under their arm. Even a small bag should have compartments to accommodate all your stuff and to keep essentials within easy reach.

If you prefer a bag that grabs attention or is more about the current trends than longevity your investment might seem to be short lived, remember the Louis Vuitton cherries of a few years ago? Even these flash in the pan trends can be saved, clean ’em up, put ’em in their dust jackets and stash it in the back of your closet. In a few years these currently trendy bags can be very retro chic. A good quality bag will last for years.

So where are the best deals? Buying from an authorized dealer has definite advantages. First being the service. The service you receive in a store like Channel is a part of the experience of buying and owning a designer bag. You can shop all their styles and see which one truly suits you in a way you can not when buying online. Also you know that what you are buying is the genuine article. The after care can often justify paying a premium price. The better design houses will take care of your purchase for its lifetime. Being able to register it with the company can help if you ever need to submit an insurance claim if it is ever lost or stolen.

Sales don’t just happen at discount stores but you will rarely see one advertised at any important designer’s store. To get the inside track on the good sales you have to have a connection. (See my earlier posts on shopping sales.) Having a relationship with your sales person will get you tipped off when your coveted clutch hits the markdown sheet. At the premium brands all the great sale deals go to their clients and the general public never even knows it’s happened. At Giorgio Armani the first day of the sale 90% of all the mark downs are already sold, having been waiting on hold in the back room with a name and credit card number waiting for the big day. By the time you hear of it, if you hear of it, all the best pieces are gone. The “clients” scooped them up weeks earlier. Why? Because they got a phone call inviting them to come pre shop the sale.

If you prefer finding great deals on-line there are plenty of options though not all are legit. There is a lot of fraud going on out there. Many online sellers represent counterfeit bags as the real McCoy and getting your money back from a criminal like that, well, good luck. Doing your research here is very important. There are lots of e-bay sellers offering deals on legitimate products. E-bay is a great place to buy vintage bags. With so many buyers only interested in “New with tags” you can pick up a used bag for pennies on the dollar and having that patina of use adds to the look. It also shows that your bag, while not off the lot new, is genuine. Fake bags don’t age well real bags age beautifully.

There is another on-line option, rent the bag! There are several companies offering new bags for rent! If you love the idea of growing a collection that you can pass down this is not the option for you. If you always want the newest and the best and then move on to the next this can be a great way to save some money. Rather than paying thousands for tomorrow’s cast off you can spend a couple of hundred, use it for a month or two, send it back and get something completely different. This idea would definitely throw my mom’s head into a tail spin, hundreds of dollars for a handbag for a MONTH! But if you are spending thousands and only using your purchases for a season anyway, it would actually save you loads of money. For many hand bag renters it’s the only way they can afford the real thing, it could be a great option for going to an event. Who wouldn’t like to walk into their high school reunion with an Hermes’ Birkin on her arm, no one there needs to know she couldn’t possibly afford it. It is better to have the real thing for one month than to have

Thomas Swider
http://www.insideretailer.blogspot.com

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How to Spot a Fake Louis Vuitton Bag

There are numerous ways to spot a fake Louis Vuitton bag. I had had it with being ripped off and did some investigating. I will touch on a couple obvious thing to look for!

Sellers of fake Louis Vuitton bags seem to be so careless that they leave some very obvious tell tale clues for us. These basic principles can be used for any Louis Vuitton bag.

The Tag This Louis Vuitton tag should not have a blue number printed on it. It should not have a blue number anywhere. Retailers seem to leave these tags on as they think this will some how prove that the bag is real. If you see this tag with a printed number down the side steer clear of the bag.

The Packaging This bag does not have a number printed on the tag but it does have another big clue that it is fake. The plastic around the the handles. This looks cheap. Some Louis Vuitton bags do have protective plastic around the handles if they are brand new but most resale bags aren’t. If a bag has ever been used or was a display model the plastic should not be there. As there is no such thing as Louis Vuitton wholesale consider where the seller got the bag from if the plastic is still on the handles.

Paper Everywhere Most fakes have paper around the hardware to protect it. This Alma bag has paper around the zip pulls and handles and you even see some with paper around every rivet.

The Price One of the easiest ways of checking if a bag is fake is just by looking at the price. If it is over 50% less than the price of the same bag in a Louis Vuitton retailer it is a fake.

Louis Vuitton does not sell bags at wholesale. Even if they did if the bag costs $1500/£825 in their shops they are not going to sell it at wholesale for $75 so another seller can sell it to you for $150. It’s not good business sense. If the bag is previously owned and the owner wants to sell it why would they sell it for a tenth of its value. I know if I’d spent $1500/£825 on a bag I would want at least half of that price back if I sold it. I would probably keep hold of it until Louis Vuitton stopped making them and then sell it for a profit.

There is so much more information as to how to spot a Louis Vuitton bag like Symmetry, Quality, Date Codes & Serial Numbers, Stamps & Markings, Metal Wear, Locks & Keys, Rivets, Material, Tag, The Lock and Sides, for pictures and more information visit

http://www.celebritycrazed.com/louis-vuitton-bag.html

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The Perfect Handbag – How to Find It!

A woman’s handbag is much more than just a place to put our keys, wallet, hairbrush, etc. It is an expression of our personality, of how we want to portray ourselves to the world. Just like with shoes, men often can’t understand why we need several different purses, but as women, we know the power that the perfect handbag can bring. For days that we need to be practical, a classic black handbag is appropriate. For a romantic evening out, something a little smaller and glitzier, and for change of pace when we’re feeling stuck in a rut, a handbag that is bold and colorful does wonders to lift our mood. In recent years, designer handbags have gotten all the attention, and with good reason. They are gorgeous, well made, and highly sought after. But as gas prices go up, and job security goes down, many women simply can’t justify spending several hundred dollars on a designer bag. Without the signature status symbol of whatever your favorite designer brand may be, how do you choose from the thousands of styles and colors out there? Here are some tips:

1. If you are looking for an everyday handbag, stick with neutral colors. Neutral colors no longer have to be black or brown; they can be gold, bronze, silver, some shades of green, gray or some combination of these. Think about what you have in your closet, and determine what kinds of colors you wear most often. Do you mostly wear black? If you want completely practical, stick with your classic black. But if you want to stay neutral, yet stand out from the crowd; go with a silver or gray, or even a neutral shade of green. If classic black is too boring for you, go for something fabulous in a shiny silver handbag.

2. If you frequently change your handbag depending on what you’re wearing, the sky’s the limit for you. You don’t want one “go with everything” bag; you want a selection of styles to go with your mood. Once you have the basic neutral, go crazy with the rest of your handbag wardrobe. This Melie Bianco Double Pocket Cargo Bag in turquoise is the perfect bag to pack a punch when paired with the right outfit. Don’t be scared of color, just make sure you keep your outfit relatively simple when going this bold.

3. Go ahead and give in to the trends. Giraffe prints are super hot this season, but they are subtle enough that they don’t scream “I will be so out of style next year; you won’t know what hit you”. A subtle giraffe print bag in black is trendy, but can still have a classic shape and neutral colors to even out the trend factor.

4. Whatever you end up buying, make sure you love it! There are so many styles and colors to choose from, you are bound to find something that screams “buy me!!”. When you find that perfect handbag for you ,the compliments will start pouring in, and you will feel like your outfit is complete.

http://www.missy-j.com

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Choosing the Right Handbag For Your Body Type

Believe it or not trying on a purse is just as important as trying on clothes. Even though a purse is just an accessory, wearing the wrong style, size or shape can really ruin your look. The part of the body that the handbag rests on will be the part of the body that the eye will be drawn to. The right choice of handbag can actually accentuate your positive attributes. Before you order one of the seasons hot, new bags, learn how to choose the right bag for your body type.

Things to consider before purchasing a purse online

If you are slim and tall – You are lucky! Being tall and slim allows you to get away with most purse styles. Oversize bags, shoulder bags and clutch bags will all look great. The only thing you really need to watch is the size of the handbag you choose. Small bags should be avoided as they will make you look bigger. Mid size, large, floppy or bulky handbags are best. Bright colors, prints and patterns are okay, too.

If you are short and petite – The most important thing to watch for as a petite girl is the size of the bag you choose. A good rule of thumb is to remember proportion. Small bags work well for small girls. Choose small bags and wear them close to your body.

If your hips are large – If you wish to draw attention away from the hip area try a shoulder bag. Choose one with a short strap. The purse can be tucked easily under the arm. The best look for you is a shoulder bag or a hobo bag that hangs slightly but ends well above the hip line.

If you are top heavy – If you are generously endowed on the upper half of your body you will probably want to draw attention away from your bosom or waist. A messenger bag or a handbag is a good choice for your body type. If you really want a shoulder bag try one that has a long strap and is fairly large in size.

If you have great curves – A shoulder bag that ends just above the waist is the most flattering style for you. The only type of bags that you will want to avoid are ones that are either really big or really small.

IF YOU’RE A PLUS SIZE – Any style of bag that is wider in width like a Hobo bag suit you best. Stay away from bags that are small. A small bag will make you look larger. Go for bags with short to medium length straps.

Lynn Donn is the webmaster for http://www.unique-handbags-and-purses.com Her website offers tips and information on all the latest trends in purses and handbags for the fashion enthusiast.

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Women’s Handbags – Handbags That Flatter Your Body Shape and Size

Handbags, next to diamonds and maybe shoes, are a woman’s best friend. Not only are they used to hold everything that we hold dear, from our cellular phones to our credit cards, our palm pilots to the papers that will spell the difference between promotion and demotion. Let’s face it, can you imagine a world without the women’s handbag as we know it?

Today, women handbags are not only “receptacles” of your prized possessions but also fashion statements. Handbags are often used to express moods, individuality, style and status. And even though, it is not really worn so close to the body like bloused, skirts and jeans, there are still shapes and styles of women’s handbags that may be flattering and unflattering to a person. Believe it or not, the handbag that you carry can actually add on or lessen the weight that you appear to carry.

Read on and find out just how to choose the perfect shape, size and style of women handbag that will fit your body type and personal style.

Look at the shape.

Choose the shape that is opposite your body type. For instance, if you are tall and thin, look for bags that are more on the rounded side like the hobo or those that are a bit unstructured. This will complement your figure as it would provide a sharp contrast to your body. If on the other hand, you are on the short and heavy side, it is good to carry women handbags that are tall, rectangular or those with really defined shapes. Long and sleek designs will help counterbalance your more rounded figure. Of course, there is no need to buy women handbags that are absolutely reed thin or those with really sharp edges. Silhouettes in soft fabrics and leathers can do the trick. Just remember to stay away from women handbags with rounded designs.

Think of the size

The size of your bag should complement your size. While the shape should be contrasting and complementing, the size should be in proportion. If for example you are quite tall and big for your age, it would be really awkward for you to carry this really small handbag. The same goes with a really petite person while carrying this really big bag. Awkward. Awkward. Awkward.

Closefitting women handbags or those that can be fit right under the arm at breast level can only look great with women who are slim and those who want to emphasize their cleavage. Using these kinds of women handbags are discouraged for people who have big arms and big busts as the short handles tend to emphasize the large sizes. Remember that the length of the handbag or shoulder bag will always accentuate the part it comes near with. If, for instance, the bag hits your bottom half or hip area, then that area of your body will become more focused as the eyes are naturally drawn to it.

Most women look great with handbags and shoulder bags that end in mid-torso as it flatters the waist. To determine if the length of the strap fits you, try it out. If your arm feels cramped, then it is too short. Try out the bag in the mirror and see for yourself if the bag is flattering to you.

Mark Dietzel operates For-Handbags.com a website that specializes in Discount Womens Handbags.

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The 5 S’s of Handbag Selection

Are you one of those women overwhelmed by the sheer, staggering number of handbag choices? Do you long for the simpler decisions of your grandma’s day? For the days when her choice was the black leather frame handbag—think Golden Girls’ Sophia’s ever-present purse dangling from her forearm. Or would grandma pick her white patent leather summer purse? Or maybe a woven wicker number for the hazy, crazy summer days of the 1950s and 60s? Aaah the simple life.

Life in the twenty-first century is not short of choices, rigid rules, fashionista do’s and don’ts, instant experts and armchair critics. Many women are unable to act because of decisional paralysis. We’ve grown to rely on the fashion industry stamp of approval to tell us what we like, what we want, and where to get it. Unless it’s included in fashion magazine full page ads or top ten lists we’re just not sure if it’s right for us. If it bears a designer insignia or is favored by the hottest celebrities we want it. At the very least we crave the approval of family and friends. We’ve given up control.

In yet one more take on how to pick the perfect purse consider the following five tongue-in-cheek handbag design personality types. By pigeon-holing er defining your personality preferences you too will be able to take back control of your design destiny and buy just the right purse for you and live happily ever after. Honest.

One. Are you a woman who appreciates fine lines, defined edges, art for the sake of art? Do you gravitate to sleek furniture and streamlined accessories? Aim for a “Sculptural Silhouette.” Look for handbag designs that are structured, yet beautiful enough to display on a bookcase or table in your home. Designs that make you gasp in awe.

Two. If the words minimalist, uncontrived, and smart define your design sensibility in clothing and home decor think “Savvy Simplicity.” You want to combine practicality and common sense with clean, simple designs. You don’t want or need umpteen pockets in your purse. You frown at embellishments like tassels and grommets and pleating and buckles. Understated elegance is your watchword.

Three. Confident, refined, possessing worldly experience in matters of fashion and culture are words that define you. You know how to carry yourself and handle any situation that presents itself. You personify “Sleek Sophistication.” You gravitate to those handbags constructed of luxury leathers, fine finishes and attention to detail. You understand that often less truly is more.

Four. You are the woman who’s most likely to turn heads. You’re well put together and not afraid to bend the rules. Your motto is: “it’s better to ask forgiveness than request permission.” Your style is “Stunningly Seductive.” In the language of purse design that means sexy fabrics and finishes like lace, sequins and beads. Your handbag selection could reflect the rock chick vibe or the fun, funky exuberance of youth.

Five. You are the woman who expects good value for your dollar. You’ve earned everything you have and you will not settle for less than the best. You expect, no, demand reliability, functionality, enduring, affordable quality. And you’re not willing to forgo fashion forward style to get it. This handbag design personality type is “Stylishly Substantial.” Organizer purses with multiple pockets, attached key chains and coin purses are features you appreciate. With your hectic, multi-role life you need a handbag that works for you. Whether you need to pack some files or some baby wipes this purse will accommodate your wishes. You opt for classic designs.

Unless you’re willing to go through life with one basic black bag it’s time to have some fun with making your own fashion accessory decisions. Take note of what you love on others but trust your own good sense. Expect value for money and don’t settle for less. Assess your needs—do you need a bag to take you from home to work and back again? Or do you want a glitzy little number for a hot night out? Or perhaps a fun and funky tote for the Saturday mall crawl? Take back your control and experience the power of purses.

Hazel Anaka is hooked on handbags and leather purses as evidenced by her online business http://www.powerofpurses.com. Her weekly column “From Where I Sit” appears online and in print. Using 16 years of retail experience she’s just opened Heart Works Studio Gallery & Gift Shop near Andrew, AB Canada. Featuring her original art and eclectic giftware, Heart Works also offers workshops in art, writing and personal development.

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How to Tell if a Web Site Sells Authentic Designer Handbags

There are many web sites out there claiming to sell authentic designer handbags. Unfortunately, many of these web sites, although claiming to sell authentic handbags, are in reality selling fakes. Here are some simple tips that can help you figure out whether a web site is selling authentic goods.

1. Guarantee: A web site selling authentic hand bags will always have a guarantee: Authentic or money back. If this policy is not listed on the web site, contact the web site operators to find out if they offer such a guarantee. If they don’t it indicates that they are not so very much convinced that the goods they are selling are really authentic.

2. Quality: If the web site claims that the products being sold are of the best quality, or something along these lines, something is wrong. If they are selling authentic goods, then the quality is constant and is equal to the quality offered by each competitor. If they talk about offering good quality, they are really saying that they have good quality fakes.

3. Chinese connections: Companies based in China are almost always selling fakes. To find out where a company is based, go to http://whois.sc and enter the domain name. You will normally see who registered this domain. If this is an address in China, stay away. The domain information will also include the IP address. Click on this IP address and see it’s information. You will, amongst other things, get a location. If the location is in China, stay away.

4. Louis Vuitton: If a web site is selling Louis Vuitton goods, this is usually a very bad sign. The only web sites that sell authentic Louis Vuitton goods are eluxury.com and vuitton.com. Other web sites may have a limited choice available in limited qualities, but even that is exceptional. Some people do sell authentic Louis Vuitton on eBay. These sellers will usually be a member of MyPoupette. Look for the MyPoupette logo before buying Louis Vuitton from eBay.

5. Contact: A trust worthy web site will list a street address. If a web site does not list a street address or phone number, stay away.

6. Return policy: Stay away from web sites that will not take returns.

There is no simply formula that will determine whether a web site sells authentic designer handbags. You always have to use your own judgment. But the above rules should help you make this judgment with better confidence.

Henk Devos is the founder of Genuine Designer Bags, a great source for authentic handbags by Fendi, Gucci, JP Tod’s, Marc Jacobs and more.

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Bags With Bling

“Sex appeal is 50 per cent what you’ve got and
50 per cent what people think you’ve got.”

-Sophia Loren

I don’t know the time or context in which Sophia said this but I re-discovered it in a book of quotes, “The Last Word-A Treasury of Women’s Quotes” by Carolyn Warner, published in 1992.
It’s safe to say, fourteen years later, that not a great deal of what ‘you’ve got’ is being left to the imagination. In a world gone mad, it’s more “if you’ve got it, flaunt it.”

For those women unwilling or unable to compete with the sexy, nubile, twig-skinny, nearly-naked, rich young girls, the only recourse is letting your accessories speak for you.

Personally I consider shoes to be utilitarian. With plantar fasciitis the need for comfort is non-negotiable. In fact if I had a nickel for everyone I know with some sort of foot problem, I’d be a rich woman. So, for me at least, shoes are not the thing that defines my look.

However, handbags are. Never before has selection been greater. The sheer number of designers pumping out at least two collections a year ensures product galore (and a very short shelf life for all but the most classic designs). The internet has served to make our world so much smaller. The world’s inventory is literally available in the comfort of our own homes.

Knock-offs play into Sophia’s “what people think you’ve got.” For those women inclined to create an impression, albeit false, knock-offs may be the answer—how to have the designer look when clearly you can’t afford it.

Most other women are content (or is that resigned?) to making their fashion dollar go as far as it can without resorting to copycat products. That may mean, in practical terms, just buying one really good leather bag each year plus a fun, funky, faux fad knowing full well it’s almost a throw-away.

Current handbag styles seem to fall into two loose groups. The trendiest ones are loaded with buckles, tassels, rings, straps, appliqués and jewels. In a word: bling. They tend to be over-sized, slouchy, unstructured. Group two are those classic styles, colors, construction and finishes that endure year in and year out. A toned down, more subtle bling. The sort of designs that become the mainstay of some of the world’s most successful and enduring design houses.

Both groups are available in price points exclusively for the ultra-rich, Hollywood starlet or more reasonably priced for you and me.

But back to Sophia…is it sexy to flaunt the illusion of wealth even if you can’t afford it? Or is it sexier to flaunt your authenticity—pulling together your very best look —with the greatest accessories you can afford.

Hazel Anaka is hooked on handbags and leather purses as evidenced by her online business http://www.powerofpurses.com. Her weekly column “From Where I Sit” appears online at http://www.voicemagazine.org and in print. Using 16 years of retail experience she’s just opened Heart Works Studio Gallery & Gift Shop near Andrew, AB Canada. Featuring her original art and eclectic gift ware, Heart Works also offers workshops in art, writing and personal development.

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Women’s Handbags: Spruce Up the Ordinary

Do you ever find your wardrobe is missing something? Have you ever wondered how to make an outfit more or less formal? The answer to many of today’s wardrobe problems can be answered with the handbag. You do not have to run out and buy an entirely different wardrobe; a new handbag will spruce up the average jeans/t-shirt ensemble, or add life to an everyday work outfit. This can make an otherwise casual outfit a little dressier without sacrificing comfort. That same handbag can also add to a formal or business ensemble by adding a little glimmer that catches anyone’s eye.

If you find yourself stuffing your wallet into your back pocket or grabbing the same boring and worn-in satchel, a bright and trendy handbag can turn frumpy into fantastic. Some people believe that the handbag they have carried for years is just the perfect size and some have even developed an emotional attachment. A healthy wardrobe, however, consists of more than one useable handbag. Many other bags are able to fit just the right amount of makeup and other essentials. Not all designer handbags are impossibly small or unnecessarily big. There are all types and sizes to fit with every personality type.

Also, beautiful women’s handbags do not have to be a drain on your wallet; many are inexpensive and very durable. Choosing a great handbag is easy; if it catches your eye, it’s a keeper. Every time you wear it, you’ll feel great and sexy.

Kimi Lasser is a consumer writer and fashion consultant, and an enthusiast of women’s handbags. She currently attends Rochester Institute of Technology where she studies Advertising Photography.

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