Sunday, 2 November 2008

The only way to buy shoes.

How much does a new pair of shoes cost. Well, if you want disposable fashion, then New Look or Primark are probably the answer, but if you want something a bit more gorgeous...?

I'll probably expect to pay anything from £40-60 for a pair of average high street chainstore shoes. For the same money (or less), though, I've been discovering that I can have something by miu miu or Prada, or D&G...

The answer, as it so often is, lies with ebay. Now ebay is not a completely benificent enterprise, but it is an invaluable resource for the dedicated shopper.

I've bought four pairs of shoes from ebay in recent months.
  • Red patent, platform stilettos. Miu Miu. £45
  • Platform, wedge heeled, basketwork sandals. Prada. £35
  • Red flat mary-janes (for work). Camper £20 (Camper may not be 'designer', but they're £80+ in the shops).
  • Duck egg blue, kitten heels with bronze beading and lace. Miu Miu. £55
Now of course, there's a catch. They aren't brand new - and the Miu Miu shoes had both been worn - but I swear, only once - there wasn't a mark on them - and they all came in their boxes and dustbags and the thrill is far higher than owning something brand new from Schuh, believe me.

How to do it:

  1. Go to Clothes, shoes & accessories > Women's Shoes
  2. On the left hand side of the page, under 'Refine Search' the second category is "size". If, like me you find more than one size fits you, click "choose more", as this will let you select more than one size. Click "Go".
  3. Now under 'Refine search', find the "Brand" category and select 'choose more' again. Select the brands you're interested in. I'd steer clear of Manolo Blahnik, Louboutin and Jimmy Choo - they're often fakes and almost always very high prices. Don't select too many brands at a time - you can always go back to look at other brands later if your favourites don't have anything tempting.
  4. Find something you like the look of and bid. I use a bid sniper, for reasons I won't go into here. But remember the point of the exercise is to pay high street prices.
Things to watch out for:

  • Fakes. Fakes will purport to be brand new or BNIB (brand new in box). They'll have a relatively high asking price and a buy it now in the hundreds. A branded box or dustbag is in no way a sign of authenticity. If unsure, look for a seller who: doesn't only sell shoes; is selling a few pairs of shoes the same size; has worn the shoes (once or twice); or has taken the photos of them on their dining room table or whatever - these are good signs.
  • Well worn / knackered shoes. Look at photos carefully. Check feedback. I wouldn't buy anything which hadn't been kept in the box, myself - it's a sign of someone who cares for their shoes.
  • Fit. Know your feet. You can't try them on, so be aware of how narrow they look or other problems you know you have with shoes. Sellers often include helpful notes like "I normally wear a size 4 and these were on the small side" etc. If all else fails, you can relist them on ebay yourself and make most of your money back.
  • Postage. Shoes are big and heavy. Ask the seller for special delivery costs - they'll be insured for loss and it may work out no more expensive. If the seller wants more than say, £7 for postage, be aware they're looking to make money on it.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Thanks for commenting - always nice to know I'm not talking to myself...