How I got a FREE piece of Louis Vuitton Luggage.

First things first — this is a completely true story. I’m not sure how, or why I was lucky enough to get this, but I did. So I can’t say this is a foolproof system or not. But this is my experience in the Nice and Florence boutiques of Louis Vuitton, and how I somehowmanaged to get a free piece of Louis Vuitton luggage.


 

Backstory

 

In May this year, my mother and I took our annual holiday together and instead of choosing a cultural city break as we normally pick, we decided to go on our first cruise. On this cruise, I knew it was the perfect time to add to my Louis Vuitton collection and had saved up enough money to buy my Jeanne Wallet (my full review on this is up on my blog here)

I found out that in our first port of call, which was Villefranche-Sur-Mer, there are direct train links to Nice, and Mother and I decided that this is where we wanted to spend the day. There was also a Louis Vuitton in Nice, and I thought to buy a French piece of Louis Vuitton on the French Riviera would be so chic.

The Nice Boutique.

 

So off we went on a day of sight-seeing. Nice was a lovely city albeit slightly overcast on the day. But we wanted to stretch our legs and walk along the famous promenade. One of our first ports of call was Louis Vuitton however, and upon entry to the Avenue de Suède boutique, we were helped by a lovely sales assistant who helped me find my exact wallet and pay for it very smoothly.

From what I gather, the Nice Louis Vuitton is over two floors and has everything from Ready-to-Wear Women’s and Men’s fashion, leather goods, perfume and books, along with a personalisation service. The shop was very clean and well-stocked, but did get very busy as downstairs can feel overwhelming if you’ve got quite a few people milling around. I didn’t venture upstairs, so I can’t comment if it goes back or out any further.

The Luggage Tag Story

 

This is the part of the story where I’ve got to mention that this cruise coincided with my birthday. And after not knowing what to get me whilst in the UK, my mother asked me if there was anything I wanted on the cruise.

And after deciding that picking an excursion on the cruise (these day trips tend to run quite pricey when they are organised by the ship itself) I also asked for a Louis Vuitton Luggage Tag. I had lusted after a luggage tag for a while after seeing a few people carrying personalised ones on their Speedy’s and thought it looked so classy against the Monogram print, and after scouring purse forums, I’ve found out that the best thing to do was just ask in the boutiques if they stocked them.

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So, my Mother and I asked the manager of the Nice boutique whether or not there was the possibility of buying a luggage tag from them. I had read that the luggage tags range from about £40-£100 (dependant on shop/source/size) and we were willing to buy one then and there.

The manager initially said no, but eventually disclosed that they may have them in tomorrow. However, as the cruise ship was departing for Italy the day after, there wasn’t a possibility that we could go back. So we explained that we would be in Florence the day after, and would have to leave it.

He then told us that we could certainly go and ask in the Florence boutique, as they may have something they could offer. My mother and I thanked him and left the Louis Vuitton boutique to enjoy the rest of the day in the South of France.

The Florence Boutique.

The next day we arrived in the beautiful city of Florence. After my birthday-present guided tour, we were allowed a few hours to grab some food and go exploring the historical streets before the coach took us back to the cruise ship.

My mother and I had a leisurely stroll around the city before making our way towards Louis Vuitton. To be honest, at this point, I didn’t care if I got anything. I didn’t want to make this whole trip about ‘Alice hitting up every Louis  Vuitton she comes across’. This was going to be our last shot.

Unlike in Nice, where I was carrying my Speedy and looking all glam, I had dressed down for the hot Italian weather and wasn’t every carrying my new wallet. (I like getting insurance on them before taking them out anywhere).

But we walked into Piazza degli Strozzi boutique like we owned the entire company. We, first of all, talked to a very helpful sales assistant who, after listening to our query, got the store manager. The manager was incredibly helpful and told us to wait a few minutes. He disappeared out the back, and after about ten minutes of us walking around the shop, he came back and led us upstairs. We were given water before sitting down with us and saying that he had luggage tags, and wanted to know would I like them personalised.

At this point I was stunned. I assumed that we wouldn’t get anywhere, and my only chance of getting a luggage tag would be through buying a huge piece of luggage or suitcase in the future.

(In retrospect, I think the manager had phoned up the Nice shop to confirm who we were, and that we had, in fact, bought something from Louis Vuitton the day before).

He showed us the different size lettering and fonts etc, before taking my initials down and having them take to be hot-stamped.

The whole process took about ten minutes, and I was thrilled when it came back.

But then it came down to payment. He put the luggage tag in its own little box and bag, and when I said ‘so, where do I pay? How much for it?’ (If it was more than I was expecting, I would’ve gone half or more with Mum. I genuinely had no idea how much it would cost) but he just dismissed us and said ‘No no. Free. A gift.’

I was beyond stunned.

So, here I was. Dressed down like sweaty English tourist, and walking out of Louis Vuitton, clutching my luggage tag and not having to spend a penny that day.

And from the minute I got on the boat, the luggage tag has sat proudly on my Speedy.

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But like I said, this is my experience. One that I still can’t understand or really know why it happened that way. Is that commonplace in Louis Vuitton? Do they think I was someone special? Who knows.

If anybody has any questions/queries about this, then please don’t hesitate to let me know.

Louis Vuitton Speedy Bandouliere 30 – First Impressions and Review

So, after a good 10 years of pining, making scrapbook pages and just lusting hopelessly, I finally got to get my dream handbag of a Louis  Vuitton Speedy 30 as a graduation gift. And now, after a month and a bit of using it virtually everyday, I think I can finally write a review on it as being an investment piece, and as an everyday handbag.
So, which handbag did I pick?

The Speedy collection ranges in different sizes – from the teensy Nano through to the 25-40 versions, and with a variety of prints and colours at your disposal:

  • The Monogram – traditional LV printed monogram.
  • The Damier Ebene – brown checkered print.
  • The Damier Azure – cream and blue/grey checkered print.

There are plenty of options for your personal taste. With the addition of the crossbody strap, the Speedy evolves into the Bandouliére design, which in turn also has the Monogram, Damier and the Empreinte design (a embossed leather finish in a variety of colours).

So, as you can see, there is a lot of different colours, styles and choices to make. I chose the Monogram print, as I’ve always loved the LV print over the checkered brown, and I like the idea of the pale patina leather (more of that down below).

Now, I’m a girl who carries the world and its kitchen sink in my bag. As a reader, I always have to have a book with me, and usually there’s chargers, cardigans and just an assortment of crap that gets shoved in the bottom of my bag in case I need it. So I prefer handbags that have a crossbody strap, as it bears some weight off my wrists and has that added security bonus. So for me, the Bandouliére was the perfect design.

But what I get most asked is’how much was it?’, and the answer is very simple. It cost £790. And don’t get me wrong, I appreciate how lucky I am to own this bag, and to be given it as a gift was incredibly generous of my family. But for a designer bag that has been tried-and-tested to be long-lasting, and virtually indestructible as a everyday bag, I think it is worth every penny. Another interesting fact I was told is that the pale calfskin colour of the strap, handles and side would darken in time due to the use and exposure to the elements, which I personally cannot wait for. I love that the bag changes as the years go past, as it shows that I’ve been using it.

So, how does this bag fare? Well, whilst I was at the shop, I was allowed to test out both the 30 and 35 size, as I wasn’t sure how big and deep the bags were. And for me, as a big-bag lover, the 30 was the perfect size. It has plenty of room inside for everything I need, and I’m sure that if I needed to, I could turn this into an overnight bag.

If you detach the shoulder strap, the 30 still retains that capable and comfortable handbag feel, whilst to me, the 35 would have looked a little oversized. However, you need to be mindful of the openings of both bags. The zip opening of the 30 is fine for me, but I do find myself sometimes slotting things in at an angle to actually get them into the bag. The 35 may also have the added room so you can completely overfill your bag with every possible necessity, and it not appearing fit to burst. But, it’s entirely up to you and your personal preference.

The bag is brown canvas inside, so there is no worry of scratching any soft leather if you shove your life into this bag, and it has one inside pocket. The inside pocket isn’t the most open or widest pocket ever, so usually I just stick something flat inside there,such as train tickets or keys. The bag also comes with the added security of a lock and key.

I also chose the Bandouliére over the traditional Speedy due to the added shoulder strap, and security that it brings. The Speedy’s handles are notoriously small, so really it can only be held in the hands or in the crock of the elbow. And sometimes, when you have a lot of stuff in your bag, or you just want to have it out of the way, that can feel a bit overwhelming or heavy. Also, despite the Classic Speedy having flaps for a possible strap, these are just punctuared holes in a piece of leather, so if you overburdened your bag, and had a strap holding it up, it may rip and completely disfigure the shape of your bag.

With the Bandouliére’s reinforced side panels, hooks and having actual measures put in to make sure a strap is a viable option, I chose that one. The strap is also an interesting piece of workmanship, as it’s
not just one long piece of leather with an adjustable slide, but actually two straps that buckle together. So this can be switched up to be either a crossbody bag, for those times when you just want to sling it across and forget about it, or a fashionable shoulder bag. The straps also have three different lengths, so you honestly can mix it up so many ways. However, you must be warned. The Bandouliére is +£200 more expensive than the Classic Speedy in the same size. So there are positives and negatives to that.

So how is this bag boxed, and how was the customer service? Customer service was exemplary. As I went into the New Bond Street’s Louis Vuitton, I was greeted by a host of store members who cooed over the fact that this was my first LV. My server was a lovely Asian lady called Grace, who brought out every bag I asked for, gave me all the information I could ask, and brought over some complimentary drinks which really added to the vibe. She explained everything to me, and let me have a look around the shop as she got my bag ready.

Now, how was the boxing? I must say, the packaging for these bags is well done. I got dustbags, boxes, ribbons and all the bells and whistles. Even the receipt was on plush paper and inside a little envelope. But the actual boxing? For ease of transporting, size and whatnot, your bag is folded up and flat-packed into the box. And some people may like that. But for me, it was a bit of an ‘oh…’ moment. Because you are paying quite a lot of money (in my mind anyway), and to see your bag being folded up is just a bit odd. I guess if you were buying a more expensive bag, it wouldn’t get manipulated that way, but who knows. So afterwards, the bag did need a few days being padded out and warped back into shape. The Monogram Canvas bag isn’t actually full leather (a fact I didn’t know) so it can be moved into those positions and squished without too much damage. But I guess that is why it lasts. I can be tossed around, and it will last.

But all in all, I love my bag. I know some people find the Monogram print a bit tacky, and copied. And I was torn between the Speedy and the Neverfull (which is going to be my next splurge), but this is me getting my lifelong dream bag. I use it all the time, it’s a perfect transitionary piece between all the seasons, night and day, and it just screams class in my opinion. I am so happy with it!

But if you have any questions on this bag, please let me know below. I hope this is enough of a review.

But let me know if you’ve got a Louis Vuitton, and whether you think it’s worth it!