London is amongst the top ranked countries in the world for fashion. There are so many opportunities for self-expression as the population is so large, that there are many different outlets for distinctive style.
What caught my eye was the amount of Middle Eastern women wearing Hermes Birkins & other luxury brands that are inclusive to the wealthy. I even saw a Birkin with a rain coat – yes, a rain coat on top of the purse! How brilliant! (I will be ordering a couple of these to test out on my purses – I will be posting a video on if they really work).
Walking through the afternoon tea room in Harrods into their restaurant; Mezzah Lounge, I saw a table of ladies who each had a Birkin to match their burkhas. I smiled when I walked by because, their public self-expression is in their makeup, shoes & the most important, their purse.
Compared to my short turquoise hair, all black attire and measly Hermes Evelyn. We looked at each other and all smiled. I thought, if I could afford that sh*t, I would wear it all the time too.
I got back to my afternoon tea and started to research. I found an article from Reuters stating;
“For us, with China, the Middle East is the market that is growing the fastest,” Hermes Chief Executive Patrick Thomas told Reuters at Paris Fashion Week. “These markets for a long time preferred a more ostentatious type of luxury and now want a more refined and discreet style,” he added.
The ability to own their public style with a $11,000 to $300,000 purse, opened up a new fashion niche for me while vacationing in London during the holidays. I’m used to the Crazy Rich Asian genre of Louis Vuitton and Chanel. More affordable brands.
Being the world’s biggest buyers of fashion, Middle Eastern women are purchasing haute couture for a social calendar that can have 15-20 weddings a year and monthly private events, where only women will see them. Making Middle Eastern & Chinese women higher demand in fashion houses vs North American who purchase for occasional events. Fashion houses have to keep track of who is purchasing what pieces in order to ensure there are no overlaps with outfits. Customers, are wearing outfits only once to each event. My dream come true, wearing an outfit per day. I can only think of the 365 possible ways to express myself every day.
So, where does this story fit into my vision of the Styleworthy brand? This is where I like to discuss self- expression, confidence and authenticity.
Out of the public eye, we are genuinely authentic to ourselves, we are bare faced, wearing comfy clothes and kind.
In the public eye, some tend to have an alter-ego, where what one wears is their means of self-expression – to seek approval and attention. Some are harsh on themselves on how they look to others vs how they look for themselves.
The Middle Eastern women that I saw, have their public style mastered. One that leaves women, such as myself wondering, what are you wearing in private events? Imagine thousands of women at an event in all couture? I can. It would be a fashion lovers paradise.
I wasn’t envious or jealous of the items they were wearing, it made me curious. I was in London to shop for myself but was able to see and learn about a different culture’s way of consumerism.
For Middle Eastern women, couture is a symbol of social status and success. At parties and weddings, they want to shine and impress potential mothers-in-law scouting for eligible brides.
In North America, women tend to shop to impress those around, just look at the InstaFeeds!
How is the above story about wealthy expats relatable? Their means of self-expression happens to be with items such as their purses, shoes and makeup because in the public, that is all they can reveal
The clothing that you put on your back is a direct indicator of what you think of yourself and your life.
What ways can individuals like myself have to express our style?
Anything you wear, at any price point, will lead awareness to self-perception & self-awareness, raise self-esteem then encouraging a well-balanced life.
A brand name isn’t you’re brand name. You have your own image and brand that you create.
How to own your style, encourage yourself, feel worthy and how to be authentic 24/7.
If you can afford a luxury purse and use it as a part of your personal brand & style, then why not?
Just don’t let the brands takeover who you are. Don’t create the appearance of a lifestyle you have not yet earned.
Especially, don’t get into debt over it.
Follow my journey of understanding all things Style & Self.