How to Spot a Fake Designer Bag: Authenticate Like a Pro
Posted 72 days ago by Amanda Raye
Broke & Chic teamed up with Bella Bag founder Cassandra Connors, to teach you how to authenticate a designer bag. Bella Bag is an online shop where you can buy, sell and trade pre-loved designer bags. Yes, even a broke fashionista such as yourself can rock the same bag as Victoria Beckham!
If you’re going to spend even a penny on a designer bag, make sure you’re not being taken advantage of. Back in the day (as in only a few years ago) it was easy to tell if a designer bag was fake, but now it’s getting harder and harder to tell if your piece is the real deal. Taking from her 13-Point Authenticity Inspection, Cassandra Connors provides some helpful tips on what to look for when authenticating a bag.
- Counting stitches. While tedious and somewhat frustrating, counting stitches can really be a deal breaker when it comes to authenticating a bag. Keep in mind that the real deals often have a much more complex stitching design that most knock-offs.
- Examine interior and exterior logo stamp. While knock-off logos might look like the real deal at a glance, a thorough examination is necessary to find the minor detail differences between the real logo and the knock-off logo.
- Trace serial numbers. Serial numbers almost always seal the deal in authenticating a bag. The serial number assigns a specific number to one designer piece that involves the history of the bag. A knock-off serial number will not show up in a designer database as it was most likely made up.
- Test hardware magnetism. This has a lot to do with the materials there are generally used with a specific brand. When the material used of the real deal is known, it’s easy to compare the differences.
- Inspect zipper heads. Each brand uses a different zipper brand, and almost always uses the industrial ones. Also, zipper head designs are almost always altered, and because the zipper is such a small details, it can sometimes be hard to catch.
I’m also a proud owner of a pre-loved designer bag. A navy blue Marc Jacobs Stam bag has a permanent home on my shelf. Although still pricey, it was worth every penny. It has saved me at quite a few New York Fashion Week events.
Do you own a designer bag? As a broke fashionista, was it worth every penny? Or, is your credit score still suffering? Let us know in the comments below!
Out and About: How to Take Control of Your Finances, featuring LearnVest & Marie Claire
Posted 389 days ago by Amanda Raye
Just recently, Melissa Murphy of Office Style and I had the opportunity to attend ”Women in Business,” the Marie Claire event showcasing Joanna Coles, Editor-in-Chief of Marie Claire and Alexa Von Tobel, Founder and CEO of LearnVest, in honor of Ruth Fertel, the founder of Ruth’s Chris Steak House. It was so great spending the evening celebrating the achievements of female leaders.
The event started off with Joanna Coles, telling us a funny story about a salon mishap and eventually it was turned over to Alexa von Tobel, who stole the show!
While looking for ways to better manage her own finances, Alexa saw a need for reliable financial guidance for women. And so, she launched LearnVest in 2008. Today, the personal finance and lifestyle website has helped over one million women gain control of their finances!
What an accomplishment on Alexa’s part! If you’re a lady who’s found herself not truly understanding her finances, LearnVest is for you. Don’t hesitate to check it out. Remember, Broke & Chic is here to teach you how to be fashionable and fabulous on a budget; LearnVest teaches you how to take control of that budget!
On an entrepreneurial note, if you have a dream, turn it into a reality. Women have more of a voice than they give themselves credit for. If you have an idea, don’t hesitate to act on it. Who knows…you could even be the next Mark Zuckerberg or Jack Dorsey!
- Dress: $30 NY & Co.
- Nude Pumps: $69 Nine West
What we learned:
Here’s a few things Melissa and I learned at this event that blew our minds. Needless to say, we both were eager to head home and organize our finances!
1. Only 40 years ago, women weren’t allowed to have a credit card in their own name.
2. Take control of your finances. Get organized and consolidate accounts. Treat your money like your social life!
3. Think about your life based on what you take home, not your salary. You might make 60,000/yr but in reality, you only make 42,000/yr after taxes. Treat the later as your salary.
4. Your rent should only be 30%of your monthly income.
5. 20% of your income should go to essentials. Utilities, food, gas….
6. Your credit score is the only grade that matters when you’re out of school.
7. According to Alexa Von Tobel, everyone should have an emergency fund of nine months of living expenses.
8. Should you buy or rent? It depends. If you don’t think you can live in a home for at least 16 years…don’t buy it.
9. All women should have their own bank accounts. Don’t let a man ever control your finances. Don’t rely on someone else to support you forever. Always have your own income. You never know. The only person you can really depend on to be there for you, is yourself!
10. Want a raise? Set up a meeting with your employer a month in advance to talk about your career. Be prepared to negotiate. According to Alexa, women have a hard time with this. Go for it ladies!
11. Don’t be to aggresive in your negotiation. Educate yourself on what others in your position all over the country are making.
12. 25% of the USA consists of single moms!
13. We make 6-10 money decisions everyday!
Helpful Articles from LearnVest
9 Ways to Raise Your Credit Score Immediately
9 Secret Ways Stores Seduce Us Into Buying
4 Things To Do if You Don’t Get the Job
Is Your Spending Normal?
Alexa von Tobel and I after the event.
Here’s a question for you. Why do men negotiate their salary tooth and nail and women don’t? Let us know you personal thoughts in the comments below.
Trend Alert: High-Top Sneakers
Posted 414 days ago by Amanda Raye
Isabel Marant has officially started a trend with her Willow shoe. Aka, the high-top sneaker wedge! Not a fan of heels? Regular high-tops are just as trendy.
This trend has taken Europe by storm, and has just recently made its debut on the New York City streets. Get the lift you desire while sporting a casual look, or opt for the regular flat version. Either way, you’ll be stylin’. The more bright and loud the colors are, the better.
Unfortunatly, the Isabel Marant pair start at a whopping $760. Luckily for us broke fashionistas, ASOS has saved the day. Find a pair of wedge high-tops for only $82 on their website.
Other options for a wallet friendly wedge sneaker:
Nike’s ’Dunk Sky Hi Liberty’ Hidden Wedge Sneaker: $130
Modcloth’s Heigh and Seek Wedge: $90
ASOS DENY Wedge High Top Trainers With Suede Detail: $82
If you’re not a fan of the wedge, check out Aldo for a funky pair that won’t hurt your feet. If you want to avoid the funk factor, stick with the traditional Converse. Try a pair in white, they’ll go with everything you own…even that LBD!
What are your thoughts on this up and coming trend? Think you could pull it off? Let us know in the comments below!