Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION

Online consignment boutique offers economical way to buy and sell luxe ite

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If money grew on trees I would have a wardrobe, shoe and accessory inventory that would rival Sex and the City character Carrie Bradshaw's Manhattan apartment closet collection.

But the reality is, like all responsible working women, this freelancing fashionista needs to be cautious with her hard-earned cash, and that means saving up for those luxury pieces and picking and choosing my wardrobe additions with an air of conservatism.

Still, it sure would be fabulous to be able to obtain some of those luxe items sooner rather than later. Wouldn't it be even more fantastic if you could get them for a fraction of the price?

Well this is exactly what Montreal entrepreneur Caroline Reny had in mind when she launched Own The Couture -- an online luxury consignment retail boutique.

"I was actually exposed to the concept of luxury resale by my mother while my parents were living in Europe. It's quite common for a European woman to do this where they both buy and sell designer goods in pre-owned boutiques," said Reny. "I loved the idea and as a longtime Internet shopper I decided I would bring this concept online in Canada."

Ownthecouture.com is a member-only e-boutique that offers clients an opportunity to buy and sell their gently used -- and by gently we are talking garments and accessories worn maybe a handful of times, and some not at all.

Ladies, we are talking Louboutin, Dior, Vuitton and Chanel -- even some Valentino and Gucci, and according to Reny, all items on the site go through a authenticity process that involves inspection to ensure the quality and condition of the item is in tip-top shape.

The e-boutique is ideal for the fashionista out there on a tight budget or the lovely lady who is looking to pass along her treasured items onto someone who will cherish these gems as much as she has.

"Clients who wish to consign love the idea of cleaning out their closet and Own The Couture doing all the work, taking the pictures, listing and promoting the items, storing and shipping," said Reny. "Buyers are quite surprised by the site and the shopping experience it provides, the multiple pictures for each items, the detailed descriptions and measurements."

 

Got a suggestion for a future column or a fashion trend worth following?

Email Connie Tamoto at connietamotofashion@hotmail.com.

Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition May 24, 2014 D13

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