Tuesday, April 26, 2016

More Recent Bag Rescuing at Dr. Bags!

Not makeup, but bags today! 
I wrote last year about trying out Dr. Bags, a specialty designer bag restoration company with pro cleaning, coloring and coating services for premium leather goods. Besides bags, they also restore and recolor shoes, wallets, watch straps, you name it.

I tend to use my bags to death. I'm not the sort to be especially careful or ladylike with my belongings. They are subjected to a good amount of sun, rain, humidity, and tossing around. And that's just the outside. They also frequently suffer from makeup and pen stains - generally everything you do NOT want on an expensive bag. Needless to say, they don't tend to stay pristine looking very long, and I need restoration on a regular basis if I intend to use them for the longer term.

I recently went to get a black Fendi 3Jour restored because I'd used it for about a couple of months and ended up with one or two scuff marks. Very annoying because the marks showed an ashy white on a black surface. I.e. they look incredibly obvious. 

I thought maybe it was just some dirt that got into the leather grain and tried to use damp cloth, wet wipes, hand lotion (you name it) to try and get the marks out.

Black Fendi medium 3Jour, before restoration.

Well, that wasn't the smartest thing to do as I ended up making things ten times worse.

The men in my life got involved. My husband tried his hand at it, and so did my dad. Polishing cloths, leather polish, leather sprays, even a baby toothbrush and baby soap were brought in. Nothing worked. So I figured it was time to call Dr. Bags before we totally destroyed the thing.

I've used their services before so I kinda know what they can do, but I was still pretty surprised when I collected my bag. They'd pretty much removed everything but the worst scuff mark right around the center of the bag in the cleaning/restoring process, without even having to go through the hassle and cost of a recoloring. 

The bag looks almost new. Amazing.

And here it is looking all fresh and spiffy, none the worse for wear. Although I have made a mental note to be more gentle with it from now on...

The other bag I needed major restoration for was a vintage Louis Vuitton satchel that belongs to mom. I swear this bag is probably about 25 years old if not older
It is actually a gorgeous Épi leather satchel in the classic Kenyan Fawn color. Absolutely fashionable right now, if not for the fact that it was discolored, fuzzed all around the edges, and badly stained from mold

If you've owned a few LVs you'll know they don't do well in humid countries. They get moldy and start "rotting" and disintegrating quite easily, especially if you don't air them once in a while. This one not only looked a little worse for wear, but the inside was all sticky and mottled with dark patches from mold.

There was a lot of head-shaking and tongue-clucking from the people at Dr Bags when they looked it over. I was so certain they'd met their match LOL.

But I have to say they did it again. My jaw dropped a little when they pulled it out in-store after the restoration. Honestly, it looks pretty much new from the outside now.

The leather is gleaming and the color is so much more vibrant now. I never even thought it could look so much brighter. (More Kenyan Fawn than a strange dull orange Cacao.) The hardware of course is gleaming like new.

And the most amazing thing is the dark mold stains on the inside flap are missing. I'm pretty amazed. 

Even the inner lining has minimal stains left. (And there were big black patches all over when I brought it in.)

You know what this means?
Mom is not going to get it back for awhile cos I'm borrowing it. The beautiful thing about fashion is that every few decades, if you can wait long enough and keep them in good condition, things that have gone out of fashion come right back into fashion.

Like this gorgeous compact satchel. And if you have old bags or second-hand ones sitting around, don't throw them out until you check how much it would cost to restore them. A bit of good restoration might be all you need to pull it out of the closet.

P.S. I have more information on approximate costings in my previous post on Dr Bags, but prices can vary depending on condition and size of your bag, so if you need a consultation check out their site (<-click here) and contact them for a more accurate quotation.

And if you're restoring something, I HIGHLY recommend you get it coated/waterproofed as well. I'm not being paid to say this - it's just my 2 cents. It's much cheaper and easier to prevent damage than to try and repair it later after it's ruined.

Even if the team at Dr Bags seems to be able to work a little magic.


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