This team of awesome and beautiful people founded Vestiaire Collective (a Paris-based international fashion re-sale site) in October of 2009, since inception their business has been growing exponentially all over Europe and the US.
Somewhat similar to the business model of Ebay, a peer-to-peer marketplace, however Vestiaire Collective goes far far beyond and offers carefully curated items with guaranteed quality and authenticity of all items sold on their site.
I stumbled upon Vestiaire Collective while looking for a Saint Laurent blazer by the brand’s previous designer Hedi Slimane in a specific style. The experience with the site is very interactive, in the way that even before needing to contact the seller you can read comments and see “likes” by others who are also looking for similar items. This makes you feel like you are a part of a community of like-mined sellers and buyers.
Interested buyers can contact the seller regarding garment’s condition and negotiate the offered price. My experience was very easy-going, and luckily my seller posted photos that not only showed the garment’s details but also a photo of her wearing the piece. I asked her if the jacket’s listed price could be lowered a little bit, she replied and the deal was done.
All your purchases would be shipped directly from Vestiaire Collective’s Paris headquarter, after a team of experts have checked and ensured quality and authenticity. There is nothing for you to worry. In three days I received my order, just as if I had ordered something in the US (I’m based in New York.) If you are concerned about the shipping cost, there is a premium membership, for $9.08 / month you get free shipping, no matter where you live.
Farfetch.com has been at the forefront of offering the latest international luxury fashion, but did you know they also offer vintage designer-fashion?
I’ve shopped with Farfetch for years now for both new and vintage designer-pieces. About one year ago, I was looking for a skirt by Comme Des Garçons (see why I love this brand so much) that was no longer available through all other online fashion retailers. Suddenly eureka! Who’d have guessed through Farfetch a boutique in Italy had just what I was looking for. Shopping on the site is extremely easy, just as how you would with other sites, find what you want, buy it and wear it. If you live in cities such as New York, LA, London or Paris, they offer same-day delivery. Just doesn’t get better than this. If you are not happy, there is free return.
Founded in London in 2008 by a Portuguese entrepreneur José Neves as a platform for designer-fashion. Over the years, I’ve seen their collection of offered items kept expanding. Going from a modest-sized selection at the beginning to one of the industry leaders. Farfetch partners with specialized boutiques world-wide to ensure buyers would find just about any brand and style they desire. I am partial to the vintage pieces they offer, as you are sure to land on a highly coveted one-off that everyone wants but only you’d have. Maybe even some collectables!
Speaking of collectables, 1stdibs is a site that specializes in museum-quality items. Within its vintage designer-fashion category, there a wide range of 20th – 21st century haute couture and high-end prêt à porter, or ready-to-wear.
I found the site one day when I was looking at an online catalogue from Sotheby’s. Because I also work in the art-world, I’d like to stay informed of what is out there on the market and it took me to 1stdibs. Ever since I discovered this treasure trove, it’s got me quiet addicted. Enough about me.
Everything you see on this site comes directly from expert dealers that provide detailed and precise condition reports and historic backgrounds of what they offer. For the fashion items, there are rare garments that are highly collectable and are smart investments if you are looking to add to your wardrobe collection, or if you just want to sport a stunning one-of-a-kind dress for a cocktail party. As for purchasing, if you’d like to be absolutely sure of what you are getting is as described, you can either visit the dealer in person (all information is included with their descriptions) or call up the person. For certain clients, they offer VIP consultation, now isn’t this wonderful?
Just a little bit of 1stdibs’ history- Micheal Bruno, an American entrepreneur got this idea of building the online luxury marketplace after he visited a historic Paris Marché aux Puces (flea-market) while looking for collectibles for himself. One of the uniquenesses of browsing and buying stuff on the site is that rather than having to traveling great distances and research for reliable dealers, it houses them all in one place, so you won’t have to do too much work in that regard. For Micheal Bruno and the new CEO, David Rosenblatt (since 2011), the priority in terms of serving their clients is to ensure each item is well-researched and the dealers they work with are experts and trustworthy in the field.
In addition, as I mentioned before, 1stdibes is also a great site if you are in the market for rare and quality 20th and 21st century furniture and (relatively) affordable art pieces without having to visit different auction houses, if you are not nearby or just haven’t the time.
All these three sites are my to-go for beautiful things, but most importantly things that would last for decades on. Just as Dame Vivienne Westwood once said: “Choose well, buy less and make it last.” Now, you can truly apply this philosophy to your shopping. Vestiaire Collective and Farfetch vintage for clothes you can wear as soon as you get it. 1stdibs for historic and museum-quality pieces. Let’s browse and see what treasures we find. Love to hear what you think.
p.s. Being such a fervent online-fashion shopper, I’ve put together a practical guide on how to find just the right fit and style for yourself. Check it out.