The best-selling luxury designer handbag brands by U.S. city
Over the summer, Credit Suisse released a report detailing social media activity around 14 luxury -- and aspirational luxury -- handbag labels. (The report mostly measured chatter, as well as the positivity or negativity of said chatter.) Vanessa Friedman of TheNew York Times offered a pretty comprehensive summary of the findings. Here's a boiled-down version: At the high end, "quiet luxury" labels like Hermès fared worse than bolder brands such as Fendi and Louis Vuitton. (Céline and Bottega Veneta were not even mentioned by name, probably because those houses do not generate enough yearly sales for their respective conglomerates to be interesting enough to Credit Suisse. Dior was missing, too.) The sentiment around not-so-subtle Gucci was pretty negative, while minimalist Calvin Klein saw a massive, and seemingly positive, uptick in interest.
It could be argued that Hermès should give a hoot what the web is saying about its bags, because the whole point of the world's most revered leather goods maker is that it's not all up in your face. What's more, as Friedman noted, "We won't know whether the data is actually going to translate into an equivalent sales profile for another six to nine months." But it got me wondering: what are shoppers of luxury handbags hungry for at this very moment? I asked San Francisco-based designer consignment shop The RealReal to pull data for me on the bestselling luxury handbag brands in its 10 biggest markets. I chose a reseller for this exercise because many of these brands -- including Hermès and Céline -- are not available to purchase outright via the web. Resellers also have a better sense of what's still in demand from a couple of seasons, or years, ago.
The results were not terribly surprising. Except when they were. Because TheRealReal broke down sales by city so that we could see what brands are trending in which towns. I asked the site's chief merchant, Rati Sahi Levesque, to walk me through the findings.
Click through the gallery to see the best-celling designer handbag labels by city.
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