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Sales of designer shoes and handbags are plummeting as consumers realise they can get the same product for much cheaper.This spells trouble for the luxury retail companies who have long considered the categories to be their cash cow, luxury guru and Unity Marketing founder Pam Danziger said in a report.
Caring about Manolo Blahnik shoes or Birken handbags is considered “passe,” Danziger said in her email to us. According to her research, people are buying just as many personal luxury items, they’re just spending less for them.
“Spending is down both quarter-to-quarter and year-to-year. This indicates that consumers are still buying, but paying less for their fashion accessories, perhaps by looking for sales and discounts, and perhaps by trading down to less premium brands.”
And this attitude means that retailers including Coach, Saks and Ralph Lauren have all posted weak results in recent weeks, Danziger said.
Teri Agins at the Wall Street Journal similarly declared that the days of spending thousands for a logo should be over:
“Personally, I have always despised logos. I tolerate them on sneakers because we have no choice. But I am a stellar hold out when it comes to handbags—I insist on carrying an anonymous bag. I’m an intrepid shopper who likes to scour the marketplace at every price range. I’ve found gorgeous logo-free bags everywhere from Ann Taylor to Zara to Brooks Brothers, as well as artsy stores like Anthropologie. And yes, even Wal-Mart. My brown woven handbag for $6.97 from the store has fooled the most persnickety bag snobs.”
These retailers will have to bend to consumer need and offer more inexpensive items in order to survive, Danziger said.
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