You’ve invested a small fortune into your bling. It might be a beautiful pair of shoes, or that gorgeous handbag that caught your eye in the shop window. It cost you part of a paycheck but when the crystals glisten in the sunlight or your girlfriends swoon over your bling, you know it’s worth it.
Time goes on and like everyone else, you love to wear your bling and show it off. Ballet slippers with glitter on the toe look so pretty when you look down at your feet, or that gorgeous clip covered with Swarovski inspired crystals adds a bit of class to the pedestrian ponytail and an admiring glance from the guy who is your secret crush.
Then one day, you look down and you notice your ballet slipper is missing a crystal.
It’s gone forever. Lost on the mean streets and never to be seen again.
True story – I have cursed myself many times for not anticipating this in advance and have many hair clips and several gorgeous pairs of designer shoes that are missing crystals. Every time I look down now, I stare at the black hole where a crystal used to lie, so to be honest, I don’t wear those shoes anymore. So take it from someone who has worked in the luxury industry. Here are some tips for keeping your bling babies beautiful, and intact.
- Super Glue – Yes, fellow bling lovers, this is an industry secret. During our luxury retail days, in addition to ordering paper for printers and office supplies, we ordered super glue for occasional fixes. What did we use it for? Usually, small issues for phone cases that needed a small dab when the company logo fell off in transit from the factory or the occasional crystal that popped out of a costume jewelry piece. To avoid staring at the space where your crystals used to live, I suggest a minute dab of superglue around the outside of the crystals to ensure they stay in place. Note: This shouldn’t be used on fine jewelry or real jewels where the claws are there keep your diamonds in place.
- Dust Covers, acid-free paper, and boxes – Dust covers are a great tool for protecting your luxury shoes, boots, and bags. All mid and luxury retailers should provide a dust cover in every box, even at the outlet locations. If they aren’t there, go back to the store and ask for one. Not every type of product will come with a dust cover – but it doesn’t hurt to ask. Keeping your shoes in their original boxes is a great way to stay organized and if you only use your shoes or bags for a special occasion- make sure to stuff them with the acid-free paper that they were originally packaged in. It will preserve your baby’s shape for the next time you wear it.
- Leather Protector – To spray or not to spray, that is the question. Luxury companies aren’t trying to upsell that leather protector spray to increase commission, there is a purpose for it. Using a good leather protector on your bags and shoes will keep them in fine shape for years. I have a custom leather jacket that has sat in my closet for many years. I will never wear it again but when I first received it, I coated it in the finest leather protector and stored it in a garment bag and ten years later, it looks and feels brand new.
- Labels – Not the luxury label, the garment label. If you are investing $200 in a designer cardigan, please don’t throw it in the wash. Check the label and take it to a good dry cleaner. You want your garment to stay as beautiful as the first time you wore it.
- Silica Packets – You can find them everywhere. In the box with your designer shoes, in a package of food at an Asian grocery store, and in bulk on Amazon. Save them and reuse them, especially if you live in a humid region and are worried about your leather babies attracting mold. Cool, dry storage is the best way to keep that gorgeous handbag or pair of shoes beautiful for years to come.
- Company Websites – All luxury brands invest time and effort into ensuring their clients are happy, especially after the purchase. They want you to come back season after season so they also invest in sharing information about the upkeep and maintenance of their products. Check their websites for tips on keeping your investment looking fresh and new for future uses.
Christine and Team