When to save or splurge?

I have never spend more money on a piece of clothing, shoes or accessoires than I did on my Balenciaga city bag. It took me years to finally take the plunge and book a trip to Paris (when you decide to buy a bag like this, you should do it in style, non?). But when is the time right to make such an expensive purchase? And how do you know it’s worth spending a lot of money on?

Let me start by stating that you should never ever go into debt for something as a Balenciaga bag for instance. Seriously, it’s not worth it. If you can’t afford it, don’t buy it. It’s as simple as that. Even though I had just landed my first ‘real’ job, I didn’t have to clear out my bank account to buy said bag. So my first tip on buying designer goods is to start saving! Because what if your car or your bike breaks down? Or you suddenly have to replace your washing machine? Or one of your pets get’s ill? You get what I’m trying to say, right?

Having said that, I’m pretty sure you guys are smart enough to have realized this on your own. So let’s talk about how to decide on which items to save and on which things to splurge. Take my fall/winter wish list for example, am I really willing to spend €155 on that A.P.C. hat? Honestly, I’m not sure. It’s something I wouldn’t wear on a daily basis and I might end up finding it too much of a hassle, so looking at it from a cost-per-wear perspective, it probably wouldn’t be the wisest idea. The A.P.C. half-moon bag on the other hand would be something I could wear at least two times a week for multiple years to come. So yes, I would definitely buy the bag, but I might consider a cheaper alternative for the hat (not winning a lottery anytime soon anyway).

CPW = Total cost of the item divided by the number of days you’ll wear it.

Now some items, I feel, are reasonably priced. But there’s comes a point when a product reaches a certain level of craftsmanship and quality and there is absolutely no other reason to charge the consumer a ridiculous amount of money other than for the brand name. It’s up to you if you’re willing to give in. My Balenciaga cut-out boots were super expensive but I have never seen a similar design that looks just as nice as the real deal. Consider setting a limit for each item you would possibly buy. Would you spend €200 or €800 on a wool sweater and does that €600 difference really make a difference quality-wise? Regarding quality, check the materials (try to go for natural fabrics such as cotton, silk and wool), the seams and stitching, search for any loose threads and most importantly check the fit.

So to sum up this blogpost or TL;DR for the people with a short attention span, my tips for deciding whether to save or splurge:
– Only buy things you can afford
– Look at it from a cost-per-wear perspective
– Consider the price/quality ratio

Ps. this post could have been considerably longer, but I’ll save my ramblings on quality for some other time.

Any tips of your own that you’d like to share?