By Sarah Coursey, Editor
RIO DE JANEIRO – Handbags are a woman’s ultimate fashion weapon. Dressed to kill? Without the finishing touch of a handbag, there’s no chance of perfectly completing a look. Women around the world have known this for years, hence the billions spent annually on handbag purchases.
How to have a wardrobe that captures every possible look without owning every possible bag? Enter BoBAGS, the dream accessories closet that lets you literally rent a bag, for as little as a weekend and as long as three months.
Bel Braga and Bianca Silveira, Carioca pioneers in the digital revolution, came up with the idea as a natural evolution of the online space targeting women. Linked to new consumption habits and as a consequence of observing the global business model around bag rental and the massive growth of internet retail in Brazil, a company was born.
Bel quips, “Bags provide that refreshing break in composition, a romantic, daring or elegant trace. The concept was based on marketing BoBAGS as an extended closet for a woman’s numerous functions in the modern world: executives, artists, mothers, athletes, girls that manage companies, paint, exercise, nurture their homes, spirits, and talents; with varied expressions for each moment.”
In addition to offering an accessible and convenient service, with bags that can be delivered the same day they are rented, the idea of having ever-changing accessories complements our era of fast-changing fashion cycles.
Having accessories for a little while is very appealing, both because it takes time and effort to take care of them, and because women get bored and are avid for the next ‘it bag’.
With around 60 bags today and plans to double their inventory by the end of the year, BoBAGS has three style-oriented categories: haute-couture bags, hype bags from clutches to day-to-day and functional bags for women to wear on a daily basis.
On the fashion radar, they have already seen a strong demand for Chanel, especially Chanel 2.55. Marc Jacobs, of course is always a hit in Brazil. His bags unite style, great branding and affordable pricing.
BoBAGS is offering a touch of vintage to Rio’s fashion pack. They have scoured the globe over the past two years and developed a chain of international suppliers that include vintage shops in Paris, London and New York. A vintage shop has been created inside their blog, giving women the opportunity to buy and sell their bags, making more room in their wallets and closets for different bags.
The company will start delivering in São Paulo next month and in Brazil’s other major cities by the end of the year. One of their services – the vintage shop – is already available for women across the country.
Word of mouth has been extremely positive, and brought a testimonial atmosphere to the fledgling site. If the theme of their business is high style, their marketing in contrast is decidedly grassroots and homegrown, with Facebook, friend’s blogs, the founder’s hairstylists and friend’s shops spreading the good word.