Sunday, January 10, 2010

The Cost of Designer Accessories for what They're Worth

I apologize for the rant in advance dear readers but...

Just before we moved to Australia in 2007 I decided to invest in a new pair of sunglasses. I went into my local opticians, David Clulow and looked at a few pairs but settled on a pair of black Prada ones for £150 against the advice of my hubby who recommended I buy another pair of Oakleys. Oakley have a years guarantee for their glasses, a great customer service department and if videos on youtube are anything to go by they're practically indestructible.

I was under the impression that a designer brand would offer good long lasting quality but how wrong I was. This year I got a small scratch on my glasses which I fully admit was completely my fault as I have on many occasion just thrown my glasses in my bag and not put them away properly in the case. I took my sunnies into Sunglasses Hut (who incidentally are owned by the Luxottica Group, the same company as David Clulow opticians.) to ask if they have details as to where I can send them to be repaired. The assistant advised me that repairs would probably cost more than a new pair of glasses. It seems that Prada sunglasses have to go back to Millan to be repaired and Prada do not cover the cost of P&P. It is only when they have recieved the glasses and assessed the damage that they can give you a quote for the cost of repairs. It seems crazy to me that I would have to fork out to send my sunglasses half way around the world and then may be given a quote for repairs that is more than the glasses cost in the first place!

After being advised about Pradas repair policies I have been extra careful with the glasses and now keep them in the case when I'm not wearing them but just this week I noticed small spots all over the lenses. At first I thought water or something must have splashed on them. I tried to clean it off with soap and water as advised in the leaflet that came with the sunglasses however on closer inspection it seems that the outer layer of plastic is peeling off.

I always thought that if you pay for a designer brand you're paying for quality but in all likelihood I probably could have bought a pair of fake Prada sunglasses and they would have been the same quality as the real thing. It seems these days that when we fork out our hard earned cash were paying simply for the label.

Whilst trying to find out where to send my Prada glasses for repair I stumbled upon an interesting piece of information. It seems Prada sunglasses are made and distributed by the Luxottica Group. Luxottica own Oakley, Raybans and alot of other prestigious brands. Luxottica are also licensed to produce Chanel, D&G, Versache and just about any other designer brand of sunglasses you can think of.

Gone are the days of fashion houses who make and distribute their own products in small boutiques! It seems nowdays everything is mass produced cheaply and labels stuck on at the end. This may be an exaggeration on my part but it just leaves me wondering where does a girl go to find real quality accessories these days?

Any advice dear readers? ... x


  1. I never by a name...It doesn't as you have found mean quality...Have a good week

  2. You're so right gingey, its an expensive lesson to learn though...have a good week too x