As affluent customers decrease spending on personal luxuries, signs point to the end of the era of limitless spending on coveted items.
The 1990s and early 2000s may have been the halcyon days of the fashion accessory. Manolo Blahnik and Christian Louboutin shoes, and wait-listed Birkin handbags led the pack of must-have accessories, and even those who blanched at the high-and-increasing prices of these items gave blue-box jeweler Tiffany and classic handbag brand Coach some of their best years. But those days may well be passed.
Recently I have noticed some major cracks in the armor of these status brands, and my research backs it up. For example, in one recent Wall Street Journal column by fashion advisor Teri Agins, she gave permission to her style conscious readers to eschew logo handbags - she writes, "I have always despised logos." - with advice on how to find handbags that do not include conspicuous brand logos, a badge of expense and social arrival - or at least social aspiration.