Why I don't prefer Chanel

I've never been a big fan of Chanel. I know it's all the hype in the fashion world to own a Chanel bag and I won't discourage anyone from pursuing it if that's your thing but it's just not my cup of tea. So I felt like listing down all the reasons why I don't prefer the brand:

1. Material: Chanel bags are mostly manufactured in lambskin, caviar leather, or tweed. If you ever come across a vintage Chanel in lambskin, the durability of the leather in those bags was actually a lot more than the lambskin variants manufactured now. You'll still find a large majority of them with collapsed or collapsing quilting though...I hate to think what's going to happen to the ones being manufactured now in a couple of decades. Caviar is said to be more hard-wearing but honestly I have a PST in Caviar and it's a high maintenance thing. I think the whole hard-wearing thing is a myth. That baby has been rubbing on its edges and threatening to flake off so I would hate to invest more money into another piece made with it. Tweed is nice and they have fabric options in the jersey line as well but good luck if you ever get caught in the rain with one of those babies. Jersey bags are a snagfest too and one stray sharp object can send thousands of dollars down the drain for you. 

2. Fitting into my needs: Apart from the fact that I don't want to buy leather of any sort, lambskin, calfskin or whatever, and the tweed options cost an arm and a leg, I just don't see a classic flap of any size fitting into my life. I could buy a Jumbo-yes it's a big bag but if I am traveling, I can't carry this highly expensive purse around with me and constantly be concerned about what's happening to it. If I'm going out for a fancy event it's just way too big. So basically I'm buying it to go grocery shopping or attend casual events...which makes no sense and doesn't justify the cost. If I buy a medium or a mini, they're too small to serve me for any practical purposes. Yes the mini could be a great evening bag maybe but other than showing off I don't know what other purpose it could serve. So I don' get my cost per wear. And honestly, if I need an evening bag I can go for much better options for a fraction of the price. 

3. The price point: It's just way too damn expensive. I could think of 3000 better things to do with that money than buying a fancy purse with it. Sure the resale value is great but only if you keep your bag in mint condition. If you want to get a lot of wear out of it then you may not be able to get your money back if you decide to sell it. Maybe a black caviar option may still get you there but then what's the point of buying something just to sell it? If you want to invest then buy some stocks or put that money in a fixed deposit. You are bound to get it back with an increase. 

4. Coco Chanel: So I come across a lot of people who have this misconceived notion of Coco Chanel as a warm, iconic, motherly character and hence they look up to the brand just for this impression of her. Well the truth ain't quite so pretty. Sure she was successful and a pioneer of her time but she was also someone who had close associations with the Nazi party and who spent WWII comfortably as a guest of Nazi leadership. The company is owned by a Jewish family which kind of makes up for it but when I read this whole story it put me off associating myself with something that carries her name. The brand actually downplays this aspect and even when she was alive, she was asked to keep it on the low to save the company from losing its clientele and credibility but it's a fact.

5. Quality Decline: As the brand moved from serving a small group of elite customers to catering to a global audience with high demand for its iconic pieces, somewhere I feel the quality has suffered. Apart from the more fragile lambskin leather, there are other aspects like hardware and customer support which need to be kept in mind. Till 2008 Chanel bags featured hardware plated in 24 carat gold. This meant that bags could last half a century without any discoloration to the hardware. With the new plating, however, discoloration is a likelier event. Also, since they are notorious for bad customer service, if something were to happen to your bag, you may not get the support you need from the boutique. It's a buy-at-your-own-risk situation.

6. Influencer Culture: Open YouTube and check out any damn influencer. Chances are their account will be overflowing with Chanel....like just running over. As if it's candy and you can buy it at the neighborhood grocery store. It just seems fake and too wannabe. 

For these reasons and more, I am never really able to see Chanel as anything other than a waste of money. Of course that doesn't mean it's the only way of looking at things. It may be the right thing for you and it may fit in perfectly to your life but for me, at-least for now, it's going to be a hard pass. 


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