The big spenders are coming back to the market in big numbers. The surveys and studies by experts like the American Express Publishing and the Harrison Group and several other consultancies forecast a growth of around 8% over last year in the sales of luxury goods. Big ticket items that were either not being made due to the economic downturn or remained unsold due to a paucity of big spending buyers are making a comeback and the latest example is the Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen of the Row’s new line of handbags that includes a $39,000 crocodile backpack.
Barney’s have the exclusive rights for selling the line including the premium backpack. Amanda Brooks, Barneys’ Fashion Director is excited about the backpack as two of them have already been preordered even though the bags will be launched officially in August. Amanda feels that the backpacks are not just interesting and beautiful but classics. The buyer is sure to wear it for a long time. The chances of someone else wearing it are very low.
There are other examples of high end handbags receiving a good response from the market. Victoria Beckham’s first shipment of a new line of handbags including a hexagonal chain crocodile bag costing $13,950 sold out within 24 hours of hitting the Net a Porter. Hermès has several bags like Birkin and Kelly bags, which can cost tens of thousands of dollars and its sales have increased over 15% in the second quarter. However experts believe that the luxury consumer has become more discerning and they expect the high value items to be really unique. A brand name is not sufficient for the acceptance of an exorbitant price. The buyer must feel that he hasn’t seen anything like this before and then he is willing to pay almost any price.