Monday, September 3, 2012

Chanel Camellia WOC (in 11A Red)

A few weeks back, I was helping SIL decide on her first Chanel purchase. While at the store, the SA brought out a beautiful rose colored camellia wallet on chain (WOC). SIL tried it on and felt the strap was too long and hits her at an awkward spot. In a moment of insanity, I tried it on and immediately knew it was a bad idea. Lesson never learned: don't try on things for fun.

Now that the seed for a small and colorful crossbody bag has been planted in my head, I considered my options. A mini flap in burgundy also caught my eye, but I decided the color was too dark and the shape and style was too similar to my medium flap. I wasn't set on buying a Chanel, so I expanded my search to other brands but focused on their red selections only. I considered the Coach Legacy Penny Shoulder in carnelian, J.Crew Little Edie in flame, Tory Burch Robinson Crossbody Mini in raspberry, and the Marc Jacobs Single in burgundy. After sleeping on these options for a few days, the excitement for each soon faded for one reason or another (color/shape/size/style). It was back to the drawing board for me.

SIL on the other hand, had reached a decision on The One, a small bright pink Boy bag in stingray. She talked about how she used The Purse Forum to do all her research, even picking out a store with a specific SA in mind to buy from. It's been awhile since I've actively used tPF, so that conversation with her triggered thoughts of the rose camellia WOC from a few weeks back.

Through tPF, I familiarized myself with all the information I could find on camellia WOCs, current and past colors, leather options, quality, size, etc. The more photos I saw, the more enamored I became with the camellia embossing. The design is beautiful up close, feminine, and different than the quilting on my medium flap. Best of all, the camellia WOC comes in various shades of red, depending on the year/collection. Some were bright red with orange undertones, some a true lipstick red, some a darker wine-colored red. Photo comparisons helped, but I much rather see the colors in person if I could.

I went to two stores before the SA brought out the color that made my heart aflutter. The Chanel Camellia WOC in 11A red with silver hardware (tag info / buy pre-owned) was the perfect shade of red for me, not too bright, no orange undertones, a true wine-colored red. 11A means the bag was part of the 2011 Autumn collection, where it debut in the $1400-1500 range. A year and a couple price hikes later, the bag now retails for $1700. Ouch. I had been following the eBay market for pre-owned red camellia WOCs and haven't seen many I'd be comfortable with below $1600, so I figured I'd sleep much better at night buying brand new for a little more.
[photo above]: Due to various shadows and lighting, the bag looks to have an all-over gradient of colors. In real life, the bag's color is consistent througout.
[photo below]: A close-up of the camellia embossing that I fell heads over heels for.

I believe the camellia WOC comes in only two types of leather: patent and lambskin (please correct me if caviar exists). Although patent would be much easier to take care of, I've read of potential creasing issues on the underside of the flap. For me, lambskin was the easy choice as I already own a flap in caviar. I also felt the more delicate but luxurious leather looked best with the camellia embossing (the shiny sheen from patent leather takes away from the floral design).

This bag will top my Balenciaga as the most high maintenance. At the boutique, the SA showed me a blue camellia WOC in lambskin and there were already many scratches and signs of wear around the CC lock, just from people trying it on. I've also noticed the zipper above the CHANEL logo (see photo below) has already marred the leather slightly from when the WOC is closed.

The camellia WOC measures 7.5" x 4.75" x 1.5". I've heard that it's the largest of all WOCs, but unfortunately I don't own any others to confirm. There are 6 card slots, a main compartment, a zippered section, and a front slot that's similar to the outer back slot of classic flaps. The WOC is classified as a wallet, so it doesn't come with a dust bag. Instead, it comes wrapped in a sheet of felt. My SA was generous and gave me a small dust bag when I asked her for the best way to store and protect lambskin (lying flat with chain strap tucked inside).

When worn with the chain straps, I'm able to fit a coin purse, an iPod Touch, and a small cell phone in the main compartment. If worn as a clutch/wallet, I would go without the coin purse to make room for storing the chain straps inside.

I've compiled 6 ways to wear the WOC (or any other similar cross-body type bags). If you know of any others, please feel free to share. For reference, the strap drop on the camellia WOC is 24.5" and I'm about 5'5".
(1) as a clutch
(2) cross-body
(3) single chained for over-the-shoulder look - thank you Jean for this idea and showing us how to shorten the strap to a desired length
(4) double chained for over-the-shoulder look
(5*) triple chained worn at the crook of the elbow - I personally think this would look really cute with a dress
(6*) triple chained for hand carrying

*A big thank you to my SA, Shim at Tysons Neiman Marcus for sharing her knowledge

36 comments:

  1. Cee, thank you for such a helpful post! Your new WOC is gorgeous and I can't wait to see how you style it with other outfits!

    ReplyDelete
  2. Ohh!! The flower design is so pretty! I am glad that you can get so many different uses out of the strap! Looking forward to seeing this in your future outfits! :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. Hi Cee - The bag is absolutely beautiful! It actually holds more stuff than I expected. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I agree, small but enough to fit all the essentials :)

      Delete
  4. What a stunning bag - congrats!

    ReplyDelete
  5. SOOOOO gorgeous! Congratulations on your new baby! :) tPF is a dangerous place for me - too enabling, lol.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I know, right?! It's worse than blogging, if that's possible ;)

      Delete
  6. Beautiful!!!! Maybe I will request this kind of flower on my next anniversary, hahaha!

    Monica from Fashion Koketi

    ReplyDelete
  7. Sooooo gorgeous! Love that color. Congrats on your new Chanel!

    ReplyDelete
  8. congratulations on the WOC! it looks great on you!! xox P

    ReplyDelete
  9. Gorgeous bag! Love the color and I love your tutorial on the various ways to wear the bag!

    xoxo,
    Suzie Q
    www.StyleCueBySuzieQ.com

    ReplyDelete
  10. Oh my goodness! What a beauty! I love the color. Congrats on your new addition =)

    ReplyDelete
  11. i try to stay away from tpf when i'm considering a purchase!! i'd have tons more bags by now ;) your bag is stunning, i'm sure you'll love it for years to come!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Haha I'm the opposite. tPF is amazing with all the resources available. If only my brain absorbed knowledge this easily while I was at school, lol!

      Delete
  12. Congrats Cee! So pretty!! I've always wanted a WOC!

    I too, also splurged on the 12A.. got myself the mini flap from BG and it should be coming this week. :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Ooh, please share photos once you receive it! I considered 12A, but preferred a darker red in the end. I hope your mini is everything you expected and more!

      Delete
    2. Hey Cee! Gah I'm so disappointed.. it looked beautiful until I noticed the flap was totally misaligned on the bag... about half an inch on the right side! :( It's going back tomorrow. I can't believe Chanel let this bag out of the factory!!

      Here's a pic: http://i668.photobucket.com/albums/vv43/bunny_068/photo.jpg

      The shape looks odd right?

      Delete
    3. Sorry Jen! Somehow I missed this comment earlier.

      This photo is a straight-on shot, right? I completely agree with you, the right side looks off, both on the flap and the "shape." The length looks shorter overall compared to the left side? I hope your SA will be able to track down another in better condition for you. On the plus side, the red is gorgeous <3

      Delete
  13. Congrats on your new addition. I can only hope one day of owning a classic such as Chanel. very pretty WOC.


    xo
    Sam
    http://fabulouspetite.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  14. That is BEAUTIFUL! What an elegant bag - and the color is so classic and chic. Super jealous. :)

    xo,
    Morgan
    seemomogo.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  15. congratulations! i absolutely adore that beautiful floral design!

    xo julesinflats.com

    ReplyDelete
  16. What a fabulous buy! Love the floral. My goal is to eventually buy a Chanel...I figure it is a great investment because many of my friends have their mom's Chanels...so it can be something you hand to your daughter..haha

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I sure hope modern Chanels will be able to stand the test of time condition-wise like how vintage Chanels have held up. *Fingers crossed* Good luck with your goal!

      Delete
  17. So pretty! I love the pretty embossing. Great choice in color and size. It's just perfect! :)

    ReplyDelete
  18. I have a RM wallet on a chain that I love, but yours put mines to shame, lol. The detailing is just beautiful!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Pshhh, we like what we like. I have bags in all sorts of price ranges and I heart them all :)

      Delete
  19. Wah, congratulations! It is such a beautiful piece. I'm sure you'll enjoy it for a long long time.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Congrats Cee! She's beautiful and I can't wait to see her many outfit debuts in the future!

    ReplyDelete
  21. Yay congrats on your new purse! Maybe you tried it on for a reason? It was meant to be? LOL At least that's what I try to tell myself...LOL It's a classic pice and you made a great choice! Thanks for the helpful post!

    ReplyDelete
  22. OMG so pretty!! I absolutely love the camellia embossing. I thought about getting a WOC as my next Chanel but I'll have to wait on that for a while.. haha.. congrats! She's a beauty. ;)

    xo - Sheila

    Giveaway on my blog!
    http://sheislovely1.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  23. Read this reveal excitedly a few days back but forgot to leave my comment! Beautiful choice, Cee, and very you. The embossed camellias are lovely. After you give it sufficient love, please let me know how you find the tiny snap button closure. It's the only thing preventing me from giving my WOC more love, as it tends to snap open at the slightest over-stuffing.

    ReplyDelete
  24. Congrats on your new purchase! I've been on the hunt for the perfect red Chanel bag for ages. Yours look great on you! :)

    Love, S

    http://shamelesslyoverdressed.blogspot.com

    ReplyDelete
  25. Oh dang that is one beautiful bag. I understand why it's in all of your photos now. The flower pattern is really lovely, a lot better than the original Coach pattern IMO.

    The 6 ways to wear are nice although I usually only default to crossing them or wearing on one side.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lol, sorry for the bag in photos overkill! I tend to wear my newer items over and over in the beginning, so there's probably going to be more outfits to come feat. this bag :)

      Delete
  26. So gorgeous, you make wanna buy one today. WOC and your outfit <3

    ReplyDelete

I'd love to hear from you. Constructive criticisms welcome!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...