I will admit it: I like and want beautiful things.
Editor’s note: Although this post is about a fashion accessory generally only used by women, the principles Brooke talks about here apply to any sort of purchase. We trust that readers of The Good Men Project will be able to appreciate Brooke’s story and apply it to their own experiences.
I will admit it: I like and want beautiful things. I try to make it a lower priority on my list, but since I was a child there were objects or objects that I thought a lot about, desired desperately, and every now and then actually got. To be clear, I work hard and always have. I also keep my shopping trips few and far between so that I really enjoy and treasure the experience. When I was 12, maybe 13, I wanted a Benetton Rugby shirt. When I was in my early 20s, a black Gucci belt with a ‘g’ at the buckle (ugh), and the list goes on from there. Now that I am older, well actually, let’s just say wiser; I don’t really want what everyone else has. I like the concept of a limited run or a hard-to-get item; the chase, online or in store, can be a very nice distraction to everyday responsibilities. Happily, there are companies who embrace this concept.
A few months ago I was checking my Instagram feed and happened upon a beautiful leather bag featured in a collaboration with nail art studio I follow (that’s a whole other article…). I dove into the hunt and quickly discovered that it is made by Mansur Gavriel and more importantly that they only make a few. Mansur Gavriel is a New York City-based label started by Rachel Mansur and Floriana Gavriel. They started it just a few years ago and bring great color and design to beautiful leathers and craftsmanship. They have a business model that is so up my alley. Rather than over-produce and charge a lot to cover the ‘waste’; they under-produce. They choose a price that represents the product, the process, and an appropriate product. As a result, you can get a beautiful bag that is stylish and highly desired because it’s hard to buy, hard to find. Even better, it is not just priced for celebrities or CEOs. It’s at a somewhat normal price point.
I was hooked, and now I had just one last challenge; how could I, a busy working suburban mom, get one? My Google searches led me to dead ends. However, a few click throughs on Instagram took me to a small fashion blog that had the down low. They were releasing the bags on October 20th–only one bag/person. So on the 20th, a lot of fashion-savvy 20 and 30-somethings—and I—checked, rechecked, and checked again for the resupply. I knew it was on when my younger cousin’s very cool wife uploaded a picture of her win to her Instagram feed. I had my new bag in my virtual basket shortly thereafter. I received it a few days ago and have been wearing it around NYC as I hop from work appointment to appointment. Perhaps it’s just my imagination but I feel like a few insiders have given me a knowing glance. The best part about it is that I love my bag, and because there only a few, I am not going to see them everywhere.
Photo: Flickr/Anne Worner
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