Why is Saint Laurent so expensive

Designer goods are becoming more and more expensive

The year 2001 is an episode from the series “Sex and the City”. The friends Carrie and Samantha stand in front of the window of the Hermès boutique in New York and look at the Birkin Bag that is on display. “Isn't it wonderful?” Says Samantha, pointing to the bag. “The Birkin, really? It doesn't even fit your style! ”Replies Carrie. “It's not about what she looks like, but what she stands for,” says Samantha. "It's priced at $ 4,000," says Carrie. "Just. When I carry this bag, I know that I made it. "

$ 4,000 for a Birkin Bag! What kind of times were those, one might almost exclaim. Once designed for and named after British actress Jane Birkin, this bag is one of the most expensive and sought-after in the world. In Germany, prices for a new, medium-sized model made of leather start at around 7,000 euros today, and in the USA at 9,000 dollars. If Carrie had known how things were going, she would have advised Samantha to strike right away.

Outrage over the $ 68,000 dress was yesterday

For years, prices for designer fashion, bags and shoes have skyrocketed. In August, for example, the US website racked.com reported that the classic "2.55" bag from Chanel made of quilted leather with a chain handle was still available for $ 1,650 in 2005. Today it costs 4900 dollars (in Germany it is 3950 euros). The black "Simple Pump" by Christian Louboutin is pretty much the simplest shoe that the label offers with the red sole. In 2008 you got it for 398 euros. Today you have to spend 465 euros for it.

A year ago, the fashion industry was outraged about an embroidered babydoll dress from Saint Laurent for $ 68,000. Charging such a sum for a ready-to-wear piece seemed unimaginable until then. And another example from “Sex and the City”: In an episode from 2003, Carrie's pumps are stolen from Manolo Blahnik at a party because all guests have to take off their shoes before entering the apartment. Carrie demands $ 485 as compensation from the hostess, that is how much the designer couple would have cost. This famous model is still available from Manolo Blahnik to this day. Price in 2014: $ 755, an increase of 56 percent.

What's wrong with the fashion industry? How can it be that some classic accessories look exactly the same today as they did ten years ago, but cost two to three times as much? How can it be that off-the-shelf designer fashion is no longer that far removed from tailor-made haute couture? And how can it be that all these things are bought anyway?

Higher material costs as a reason?