Buy Designer on a Budget

‘Luxury must be comfortable, otherwise it is not luxury.’
Coco Chanel


As I mentioned in my bio I try to keep my style affordable, shopping mainly on the high-street with the occasional high-end/designer purchase. I feel we work so hard for our money that once in awhile it’s nice to splash the cash and treat ourselves. I have put together some of my tops tips for buying designer on a budget.

Vestiaire Collective

Vestiaire Collective is Europe’s leading online market place for buying and selling pre-owned luxury fashion. Vestiaire Collective was launched in 2009 with the aim of delivering a high quality online marketplace. They have strict quality and authenticity checks in place on all sold items ensuring members can buy and sell premium designer fashion in a trusted and save environment. Most of the items I’ve viewed on this website are in perfect condition. You can also set up email alerts with Vestiaire Collective, so if you have a lust for a particular item they will email you if in comes into stock. They are always offering free delivery on purchases over a certain amount so keep an eye on the small print down at the bottom of their website. Check it out here.


Siopaella, named after the Irish translation of “Ella’s Shop”, is Ireland’s largest designer exchange store featuring new and pre-loved designer handbags, accessories and clothing. Based in Temple Bar, their carefully curated inventory changes daily, so there is always something new. I have bought two handbags here, one was a Louis Vuitton Speedy 25 (a classic) and the other was a beautiful Marc Jacobs by Marc Jacobs Taupe Too Hot To Handle Satchel. Both were in perfect condition and the Marc Jacobs had never been worn, the tags were still on and it was half the price! The shop assistants were so lovely and approachable, offering advice when needed. Siopaella also gives you the option to put items on hold and to pay them off in installments. They are contactable by phone, email, Facebook etc., ship worldwide and have just revamped their website, take a look here.


Unit K Sandymount

Unit K is a designer resale store, that sells premium ladies clothing, bags and accessories. Based in Sandymount it is owned by the lovely Karen. Unit K was introduced to me by a friend and I couldn’t be more grateful. I bought these Valentino Rock Stud heels which I had been lusting over for ages however I couldn’t justify paying full price. I saw these on the Unit K Instagram and I couldn’t believe my eyes, I snapped them up straight away – they had never been worn and were half the price. Unit K stock popular labels including Prada, Mulberry, Ann Demeulemeester, Dries Van Noten, Chanel, YSL, Isabel Marant, Rick Owens, Comme des Garcons, Vince, and many more. Karen offers buyers a deposit and payment installment arrangement which is how I managed to purchase these bad boys! I contacted Karen through Instagram private messages and she was extremely helpful. 


Depop is a mobile app where you can buy, sell and share millions of unique items. There are many well-known, establish bloggers and also pop-up shops on this app. Depop can be a great source for designer items.

Buy Classics

If you are buying designer on a budget this is a must, otherwise in my opinion there will be regret. Every year there are a host of beautiful ‘It’ bags that haunt us on Instagram, Pinterest etc. and it’s so easy to take the plunge and buy them. But shortly the next bunch of ‘It’ bags will be taking their place and the old ones are forgotten about. When I purchased my Louis Vuitton Speedy 25 from Siopaella I knew I would have no regrets as it will still be in style in 20 years time.


Shop the Sales

When I think to myself about shopping the sales for designer items Brown Thomas on Stephen’s/Boxing Day springs to mind straight away. However you need to be quick out of the blocks here, getting there early before the madness descends. If you don’t fancy this keep an eye out on the following websites for their sales: Farfetch, and The Outnet would be my picks. They all have the option to sign up to their newsletter, so you will receive notifications when they are having their sales.


Save your vouchers for that all important purchases! I was lucky last Christmas to receive a Brown Thomas voucher from my very generous brother. Instead of using it on little bits I put money with it and bought these beautiful Céline Sunglasses. When you buy something a bit more on the expensive side you also pick up a substantial amount of points on your loyalty card which can then help towards purchasing smaller items.



Research is key when you intend on spending that bit more money on an item. You have to LOVE it! You can’t be on the fence. Always check the credibility of where you’re buying the item from. Also, think about cost per wear. Cost Per Wear = Total cost of the item / Number of days you’ll wear it. Make sure the item you buy will go with what is in your wardrobe.

High-Street Clothes, Designer Accessories

This is something I stick to religiously. In my opinion you can get good quality clothing from a lot of high-street stores. I always opt for designer bags and accessories before I’d buy a designer piece of clothing. Again this my opinion but because I buy designer on a budget I like to be able to show off the designer piece when I can buy it. I think a designer handbag can finish an outfit off perfectly.

I hope these tips help next time you are toying with the idea of making that important designer purchase. I would love to hear your tips for buying designer – please leave them in the comment box below.

‘Buy Less, Choose Well’
Vivienne Westwood



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