Day 8 – Go ahead and hate me….

If you walk down any street in London (or any cosmopolitan city for that matter) and count how many ladies are carrying an ‘exclusive’ luxury handbag … fake or real… I think you will be rather surprised and realize how non-exclusive it has become these days!!

It seems to me that all the ladies I know either own a MK bag of some kind and/or has  a pair of Jimmy Choo somewhere in her shoe rack..

So basically it gives me the feeling that having a luxury logo is not really a luxury anymore but more of a common place requirement to belong to a certain socioeconomic group, to prove that you are part of the modern world success group and to show the world your achievements.

I am pretty sure that a promotion often means treating yourself to $700 Louboutins these days and expecting a $1400 Prada bag from your husband is no great expectation either.

Now, don’t be fooled into for a second that the male population is spared from this bug..

You wear a Rolex? Think you have earned it with your own success and money? Got a brand new BMW, Audi or a Mercedes to show off? My darlings.don’t fret….you are equally contaminated with the ‘irrational’ disease of luxury branding 🙂

We all know that people don’t behave rationally all the time, and considering the enormous debts the citizens of first world countries have, consumers clearly don’t always act in their best financial interests. Luxury goods are a great example of how irrational we can be; a decent and sturdy handbag can be purchased for $50, yet people will still spend thousands to buy a logo. Why? No wonder the global demand for luxury goods is strong and rapidly growing, with over $200 billion in annual sales each year!

So why are  you all willing to pay extra for a brand? The jewelry in my store might be as beautiful and as well made as the branded names, yet customers will walk past my store to shop for branded merchandise at a store down the street, sometimes paying more for a product no better than the one I carry. A solitaire is a solitaire, but put it into a powder blue-colored box and suddenly it has added value. Why?

I think here’s a few reasons –

1) Wearing branded merchandise sets you in a specific economic category, a certain rung on the socioeconomic ladder. It tells others where you are on the economic scale. There is a certain pecking order in society and wearing branded merchandise tells those with whom you come in contact that you are in a lower group, the same group or a higher socioeconomic group than they are, depending upon the prestige and price point of the items worn.

2) It allows you to feel as though you fit into society and belong to the group. Humans aren’t solitary animals any more than monkeys are. Wearing similar and familiar brands helps you to relate to others in the group and feel a part of something larger than ourselves.

3) There is, of course, the sense of  pride of ownership. Everyone wants to own beautiful and well-made things, and branded merchandise tends to be of high quality. There is a sense of pride when you walk up to the three-pronged hood ornament that decorates your shiny Mercedes. Each time you shut the car door and hear that classic “thud” it gives you the sense that you have purchased a well-made machine. Every morning when you get up and slip that stainless steel and gold watch over your hand and hear it snap solidly onto your wrist, you take a moment just to appreciate its art.

4) Branding takes the thinking out of a purchase. When a man goes shopping for his wife and he knows she likes a certain brand, he doesn’t have to think any further than the brand name. Anything that has that particular name on it will please his wife. Our society has turned over thinking to the few designers who rule our fashion world. Individuals no longer think about what is good design or bad; if it has some well-advertised name on it, it must be good. It’s gotten to a point that you now wear sweaters with names across the front and no design at all.

So really… what does that make you? What are you becoming?

Shouldn’t you try to free yourselves from this unnatural and irrational phenomenon? Or you think staying enslaved in the world of luxury  brands and looking all posh and pretty and classy is better?

Go ahead… hate me for pointing it out to you.

But before you go – can you maybe spare the change from your luxury purchase below????