Why It’s Time to Invest in a Classic: My Roadtrip with Ralph Lauren’s Ricky

On the road again! What else is new? Labor Day and Fashion Month have hit so it’s time to rev up those fall engines and get going. But first let’s talk strategy here for a minute. Style strategy, that is. You hear me me talking constantly about the Affordable Editorial Solution: the art of mixing high and low items to create a truly couture and catalogue worthy look for less. I scour the internet, stores, and showrooms finding the best “knock off” versions of this season’s “it” items and share them here, stressing the importance of color choice, layering textures, hem lines, tailoring, and above all styling. But one key component of building the perfect Affordable Editorial wardrobe, one that will make you look like a magazine editor every morning you hit the sidewalk, is having what I call a “Collection of Classics”. This is a base line selection of pieces that are so beautifully well made that they will hold up over the years no matter how much you wear them (and this is key because my gosh do you wear them). 
A classic and investment-worthy piece is something that is not just “timeless” but that is timeless TO YOU. I am sure you’ve read countless articles on “the-(insert number)-best-investment-worthy-pieces-to-take-out-a-mortage-to-snag-this-season” but this is not what I am talking about. Building a Collection of Classics takes a little time and is something you revel in the process and enjoy curating. As you collect and wear your pieces, you will actually remember the story behind each piece, what occasion you bought yourself those Chloe sunglasses for, the afternoon you and your best friend found that small vintage shop and discovered a set of 1970s Balmain pearl and diamond earrings, or that rainy birthday your mother and you got lost in Paris for hours after she bought you your first black Dior handbag. Punished clearly for being so spoiled…worth it! 
Or maybe it’s the beautiful box full of vintage Hermes and Cartier scarves your grandmother dropped off the day after you moved into your first apartment that have basically provided the perfect accessory to countless important outfits for your entire style career. (You can see one of my favorite Cartier scarves my grandmother gave me featured above)
So how do you do it? Where does a Collection of Classics start? How do you begin? And what about the upfront cost to buy something new that may or may not BE a classic?
The answer is simple: luxury pre-owned.

When it comes to luxury items, things like fashion and classic cars, the Luxury Pre-Owned market is the best place to start out discovering what it is you like, and what has stood the test of time value and quality wise. And because these items are preowned, but preciously cared for, they are priced lower than the brand new version. Now you’re wondering: how on earth you can insure the quality and condition of a piece, especially if you are buying it online because that’s where the largest selection of luxury goods are right at your fingertips.
Enter Trendlee. THE online one-stop-shop for finding the best luxury pre-owned handbags. Trendlee has a constant stream of new bags that are meticulously selected for sale, and independently verified as authentic and in peak condition. They also offer free returns if for any reason you are not satisfied, and ship worldwide. But that’s not even the best part: Trendlee is now a pioneer in the luxury pre-owned fashion market offering easy financing through their partnership with Affirm so you can split and spread your payments out to make it more affordable and manageable to start collecting. For anyone with a monthly paycheck…ie EVERYONE, this is finally the fashion world giving us something accessible and practical! 
SO, when given the opportunity to take a look through Trendlee’s collection, I already knew the bag I wanted to add to my Collection of Classics. Ralph Lauren’s Ricky tote hit the market several years back with clean classic lines, top quality leather, and strong and iconic hardware (much like their horse bit buckle belt which I sprang for 6 years ago and never literally NEVER travel without). So why this bag? For me it is a symbol of the all american woman TODAY: the tote in all it’s sizes is extremely practical, it is masculine yet also feminine, can be dressed up or down, worn as a fashionable cross body bag, or draped with a scarf and taken out on the town in the evenings. I know the bag craftsmanship will have held up through wearings already and will only continue to look in prime condition. It has the ever EVER important metal feet on the bottom of the bag, which prevents wear and tear on the soft leather bottom, and allows me to briefly set it down on the carpet at lunch or on the floor of a meeting. And then there’s the color… the classic black leather with the bold red stripe. This is an emotional decision on my part: something about that red stripe down the center just makes me smile. It evidently screams confidence, but in a beautifully strong way because the tone of red is just that perfect. 
In true Affordable Editorial style, I’ve paired the Ricky above with my faux black leather jacket of the moment (I find one each season because I wear them so much, and haven’t found the right “investment level” one to add to my Collection of Classics) This Design History jacket is a bomber style with floral laser cut details, which adds a little femininity to the powerful lines and hardware of the Ricky tote. It’s all about the play really: I like to look at and construct outfits the same way I read a painting and visually work through a great piece of art. This must come from my years as an Art History student and in the NY Art Scene while working for Sotheby’s, but nevertheless the comparisons hold true: when you stand in front of the mirror in the morning, you are a living moving blank canvas. The colors and pieces you choose, no matter what you are getting dressed for, all need to come together on the page and reflect what you are trying to say and convey. And if you think you aren’t really trying to say anything with your clothes, then you are making the first mistake because your style and how you present yourself is the first thing anyone will notice, see, and think about you. So go forth, be confident, be classic, be conscious, and be you.
If you dress it, it will come. 
Dress The Part.
Ricky Leather Satchel 33 Bag, Ralph Lauren via Trendlee *10% off site-wide with code LABOR
Leather Laser Cut Bomber, Design History, similar 
Jeans, Guess
Eyelet Top, Zara, similar
Booties, Schutz, similar
Shades, Quay, similar

Shop the Look

Photos by Chelsae Anne Photography, many thanks to Chariots of Palm Beach for the use of their stunning pre-owned Morgan, Visit Chariots of Palm Beach online to discover the best international selection of pre-owned classic cars. Available Worldwide.


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