Tuesday, March 14, 2023

Goyard Review

Goyard Review

Goyard Rue Saint Honore Paris

Goyard Anjou MM vs. Goyard GM
Anjou MM vs. Goyard GM

Goyard Monogram Options
Goyard monogram options

Everything you want to know about Goyard
Pre-Loved Goyard Bags:
This post was originally posted in February 2018; it was updated in March 2023! 
I have owned this Goyard St. Louis GM for about 5.5 years and still love it and wear it often. Anything in italics will be my updated comments.

You asked I am answering! I know this is such a hot topic with all of you. When I posted to my stories and Instagram while in Paris, I shared that I purchased a bag at Goyard. In turn, I received soooo many DM's and e-mails with questions! 

I also shared in this post before I traveled to Paris, that I was excited to buy a Goyard bag, but like a lot of you, I had so many questions.

If you are unfamiliar with Goyard, it is a French luxury brand with a rich history. You can read all about the history, here.  Town and Country also has a great article on the fashion house and Purse Blog's article with some great facts.

For this post, I am going to sort the information as a Q + A. Like I mentioned above, you all had so many questions, and I want to make sure I'm able to address all of them in once place, so I'm able to link to it in the future! 

What bag did you choose?
The St. Louis tote GM in gray. 
2023: Still so happy I chose the larger size! 

Which other bags were you considering?
The Artois and Anjou

Where did you buy your bag?
Goyard on Rue Saint Honore. There are two locations, and they are across the street from each other. You can shop at either. 

What was the shopping experience like? I hear they are rude. 
It was a true luxury. You are let in by a doorman. You are only allowed in with a 1 to 1 ratio of people to salespeople. One of the Goyard boutiques was full (and by full, it means there were 5ish customers inside), so I went to the other one across the street. I was greeted by my salesperson, and she was with me the entire time. Only one other customer was in the store while I was. 

Almost everything is displayed beautifully, but not necessarily all of the colors. I requested to see the St. Louis totes in both sizes, the artois, and the anjou (in several colors). She brought them all out for me and left me plenty of time to review each piece, ask questions and decide which one I wanted to purchase.

She was very knowledgeable, polite, and welcoming, and seemed happy to help in any way. I had also read that the sales associates can give off a snobby vibe, and I did not feel that at all. They were not pushy to sell me anything.

I also felt comfortable taking photos in the store. I read reviews saying it was 'shunned' to do so, but I figured I am spending a lot, so I will do what I want! She had no issues with me doing so and encouraged it when I was debating between the PM or GM sizes so I could see what they looked like on my body.

The interior was incredibly beautiful and curated. It was every bit as high-end and magical as I expected. I spent about 30-45 minutes there from start to finish. 

Why gray?
I wanted a 'special color', anything other than black (you can choose from black with black leather trim or black with tan/brown trim). Don't get me wrong, I think the black is beautiful, but I wanted to use the bag in the summer, too, and I don't wear much black during the summer months. I use a gray Ferragamo bag SO often, so I knew gray would be a great year-round neutral for me. 

2023 me is still so glad I got the gray! It truly works with everything and all seasons!  

Is there anything important I need to know before shopping?
You should have your passport with you for the VAT tax forms. The salesperson will ask for it as you check out and do everything for you. 

This is something I did not know. I bought two men's wallets as gifts. I wanted to buy two black wallets with tan trim. Goyard's policy is that you cannot buy two of the same thing in a calendar year (not sure if that is still the case in 2023, as I have not been to the Paris boutique since). Crazy, right? When you think about it, though, it's great because they are trying hard to prevent people from buying many bags in Paris and reselling them for profit. So I had to get a black on the black wallet and a brown on black wallet. Which was fine, but if you are going to buy a tote and your BFF wants you to get her the same one, you can't! If you are traveling with someone else, you could have them purchase it. 

The special colors cost more. I find this to be ridiculous, but that's the case. I wish to remember the price difference, but it is definitely a good chunk of change difference. 

If you choose the Anjou, you must get yours monogrammed. Kind of an odd practice, but I guess they want to keep people from reselling them. 

Why did you end up with St. Louis over the Artois?
Going into the store, I was almost set on the Artois. After researching online and hearing from a bunch of you, I figured the Artois would be a more sensible decision since it has a zipper, a thicker canvas, and reinforced corners. But, once I got into the store and saw the Artois in person, it is an extremely structured 'ladylike' handbag. It is not slouchy, nor a tote where you can just throw all your stuff in the bag and 'go.' It's beautiful, don't get me wrong, but just not the bag I was looking for. 

I was buying the bag to be something I could travel with and use daily that would fit my 16-inch MacBook and Nikon d610 camera, plus other daily essentials. While I liked that the Artois felt 'sturdier', it didn't have that casual, slouchy feel I sought. Once you see them both in person, they are two very different bags. 

I also loved that the St. Louis tote was the most classic option. It is truly iconic and will never go out of style (it may never really be 'in' style either, and that's what I like). The St. Louis was originally designed to be a beach bag, and it makes sense. I've used it as a beach bag quite a few times. now and it's been the perfect thing. 

If I had to choose again, I'd still choose gray. But, if I could choose a second color, I'd have chosen navy blue or green. They were such deep, rich colors. I have no plans on getting a second Goyard tote because I don't find that I 'need' nor want one, as the gray works for me. However, if something happened to my gray bag, I would certainly purchase another, as I use it frequently- I'd be lost without it! 

Why did you choose the GM over the PM?
Going into the store, I knew I would 99.9% like the GM over the PM. I love bigger bags, but I also knew that my Macbook is 15 inches, so it had to fit that comfortably. The GM also has longer straps. The GM is much bigger than the PM... the PM is more of a purse, and the GM is a large tote. 

Can you buy Goyard Online?
You can buy them second-hand on sites like The Real Real and Fashionphile. Both are known to be reputable (though, recently, I've been hearing some negative things about The Real Real but haven't looked further into it- be sure to do your own research). You cannot purchase new Goyard pieces online. You can purchase from Bergdorf's in Manhattan. In the US, they have Goyard boutiques in New York City, Miami, Chicago, Dallas, Beverly Hills, and San Fransisco. 

Why didn't you get yours monogrammed?
I didn't get mine monogrammed because I bought it on the second to last day we were there. It takes several days to weeks to have your bag custom painted, and I didn't want to have mine mailed back to me. However, I plan on getting my bag monogrammed in the US. I am not in any rush because I may wait until marriage to get it monogrammed. Now, in 2023, I'm married, but even so, I am glad I didn't get it monogrammed. I like it plain and without color. The pattern is busy enough for me. I am not sure I will get mine monogrammed ever, and this is coming from a person who lives by the motto 'monogram everything.'

How much did your bag cost?
I feel weird talking about the cost, but this is a commonly asked question because it's hard to find real information online. So I am sharing in hopes this gives others more information! 

It cost USD 1442.38 (a little less than 1200 Euros). I received $164.13 USD back after filling out the VAT Tax form. I submitted the VAT Tax forms at the airport at one of the kiosks (before going through security) on November 20th. I received my VAT Tax refund on December 28th. Making the total cost of the bag about $1280. 

According to this article from Sotheby's, the St. Louis GM now retails for $1900 (in 2023). I don't know whether that is the US or European price. Typically, it's less costly to purchase European designer brands in Europe, especially with the current exchange rate. 

Is the price worth it?
No. Yet, if you ask me if any designer handbags I have purchased are worth it, I'd also say no. I'd love to know the profit margin on a St. Louis tote. Besides the hand craftmanship and (a lot of hands-on man hours go into every Goyard piece), you are paying for luxury and a label/logo, and you need to be conscious that that is what you are paying for. It's just like Louis Vuitton. This is canvas! There is not even that much leather in these bags. Yet, they are works of art. 

I bought this because it is not as commonplace in the US as Louis Vuitton (though now in 2023, it's still pretty common), and I wanted a designer tote bag. I also noticed that it seemed like many French women were carrying Goyard, and I rarely saw the LV neverfull around Paris. 

I also bought it as my souvenir from Paris. I didn't really buy anything else while there. I knew I would use the bag, and it would remind me of fond memories from my trip for years to come. I love the print and the style of the bag; I love the rich history, and I like how they try to keep it from becoming ubiquitous. I love that it is timeless and classic. I would not purchase the bag in the US just to have it. I would wait until you can get to Paris to a) save money and b) have it mean something by buying it from the original boutique! 

Also, something to think about is the resale value. Goyard bags are actually good investments. They are re-selling heavily used for more than I paid for my bag. The price only goes up yearly, so if you kept yours for a few years and eventually wanted to sell it, you'd likely profit over the sale. I don't plan on ever selling mine, though, so I didn't care about resale value. 

How is the quality? I heard they are flimsy? Can they hold weight?
You will be floored when you feel the bag for the first time. The St. Louis tote is extremely flimsy. But, then you need to remind yourself, it was originally created as a beach tote and meant to fold up to be packable. 

When you feel the Artois, you will see with great clarity that it's a much sturdier, quality bag. I've been using my St. Louis tote for about 3 months daily, and it hasn't shown a bit of wear. I am one of those people who buy luxury goods and put them to use... I'm not one to admire my fancy bag and be afraid to use it or mess it up. I wear the heck out of my shoes/accessories, and the St. Louis tote is no exception.

If you are worried about the wear and tear on your St. Louis, Goyard can repair and care for your bag. You could even put leather on the bottom corners if you are concerned. 

As for holding a lot of weight, they hold SO much weight. I put Henry in my bag once as a joke. He is 25 pounds. I constantly carry my laptop, my (heavy) camera, a bottle of water, and many other things, and I have not had any issues whatsoever. 

2023 update: I have a tiny bit of wear on the bottom corners of the bag. I use it a ton. It is my workhorse tote. I've tossed in food, beach towels, water bottles, pens, pencils, you name it, I've carried it in my Goyard tote and it still looks really nice. It doesn't look brand new but it certainly doesn't look like a 5.5 year old handbag! 

Do you worry about the straps breaking or the bottom corners wearing?
I don't worry, a) because it's a material item and everything wears eventually. Sometimes, I even prefer a little wear because that makes a piece look loved and has character. I also know that if things start to wear, I can always have them fixed. 

What is the difference between the LV Neverfull? Are they comparable?
They're very comparable in size and style. The LV neverfull just feels heavier and more durable. However, I personally love that you can choose different colors with the St. Louis tote and that you can also fold it up even more compactly for traveling purposes. 

You can't go wrong if you are choosing between the two (they are comparable in price). They will both serve the purpose of a great designer tote. The Goyard feels a touch more special since it was my Parisian souvenir! 

Did you end up seeing the Faure le Page brand? What did you think of that?
Yes! I saw it at Galleries Lafayette! I should have taken some photos. The pieces were gorgeous. The tote looked different from a LV Neverfull and the St. Louis tote. It was more structured and reminded me more of the Goyard Artois. It was still pricey (I can't remember the price, but nowhere near as costly as Goyard). I saw several people carrying Fare Le Page bags out in the wild in Paris, so they are becoming more popular. 

How do you organize your St. Louis tote?
I did a 'what's in my bag post' that you can find, here. It is a few years old so I will do an updated post soon. I don't use a purse organizer, but if you want to, they are everywhere and give the bag a more structured look. I prefer the slouchy look. 

Overall, are you happy with your purchase?
Very. I am so glad I held off on the LV neverfull and waited to go to Paris and purchase the St. Louis tote. It was a special experience, and the bag is a wonderful reminder of my trip. It's beautiful, and classic, and I get use out of it daily. People stop me on the street (often) to let me know that they, too, are a Goyard fan.

After 5.5 years I'm still very happy with my purchase. I use this bag almost daily as my everyday handbag to carry my computer and other things. It has been money well spent for me and always reminds me of the fun times I had on my trip with my girlfriends!  

Carrying My Goyard St. Louis GM Tote Over the Years

Goyard St Louis GM Gray

goyard st louis gm review

goyard st louis gm review

goyard st louis gm review

goyard st louis gm review

goyard st louis gm review

goyard st louis gm review

how to style goyard st louis gm

how to style goyard st louis gm


Heather Watson said...

Thanks so much for this review, Sydney! A monogrammed Goyard tote is a gift I'm considering buying myself when I finish my manuscript (the book I'm writing is soooo close to being finished and I want to treat myself!) and this helps a lot!

Lauren said...

That place sounds amazing!


Rachel said...

The gray is beautiful!

Anonymous said...

The price also is significantly less when purchased in Paris. I purchased the exact same bag last summer from
the Goyard Boutique inside The Michigan Avenue Neiman Marcus and the price was closer to $2000.00 with tax.

Unknown said...

I'm traveling to Paris at Thanksgiving and I'm excited to purchase my first Goyard! In your opinion, is it better to bring the bag back to the US for personalization? I'm trying to do the math with VAT refund (don't you have to have the bag with you to receive) or sending back home (I think you don't pay VAT if you do this?). Basically, I would like to buy it in France regardless but wondering the best / most affordable way to also get it personalized. Thanks!

Unknown said...

I just purchased my first Goyard at BG.

This blog was very helpful. Glad to hear about the wear and tear. I thought I was going to have to be more careful. It sounds like we carry the same stuff so I should be good.

Thanks again!

Jen said...

I was there this summer and I was planning on purchasing a Goyard Saint Louis. I did so much research and was prepared. I had the worst experience at both the stores in Paris. I was ready to buy a tote, wallet and several other items. Maybe it was my bad luck and I got the one bad sales person. I went to Louis Vuitton and had the most amazing associate and experience. I went to the Champs Elysse store and was taken up to their private shopping room on the top floor overlooking Paris. We rode in the private elevator. My associate had my items embossed and was amazing. He still sends me emails. I was disappointed at first but now I cannot wait to return to Paris to go back to Louis Vuitton.

Anonymous said...

If you want to get your Goyard monogrammed in Paris and mailed to you in the US, you will have to pay customs on it which is around $500. You don’t have to get an Anjou monogrammed, unless they’ve changed their policy since I was there in April. If you want to bring it back and have it monogrammed in the US, don’t use it! I carried mine for less than a month and when I took it in to the NYC store for monogramming, I was told it was too soft for the paint to adhere properly and they couldn’t guarantee it wouldn’t chip off. I bought a luggage tag and had that monogrammed instead. Next time I go to Europe I’ll buy a St Louis and not use it until it’s monogrammed!

Jill said...

Such a great post, Sydney! I referenced it multiple times before making the leap to buy my Goyard in Paris last summer and it was super helpful. Just for fun, what color would you get if you were going to get a second?! I dream of adding another to my collection in a few years...we'll see :)

christen said...

Love your bag! I was on the fence with that goyard bag in navy & went with another LV neverfull bag. I don’t wear totes much anymore but I remember being disappointed with the goyard beverly hills store 5 years ago and it was so dark in there i was having a hard time seeing the bag & they wouldn’t let me take pics. (like you, i like to take pics of myself wearing different styles and colors to see it from different perspective) or to go home overnight and think and figure it out for sure! fast forward to 2024 (5 years later since my last in store experience) my daughter was looking at the st. louis vs artois tore and i was looking at a crossbody. they were so snobby in goyard and again security came to bark at me after taking 2 photos…the lighting still so dark and terrible. we left re: the snobby customer service and lack of being able to take a photo. they wouldn’t even let me facetime my husband to get his opinion on colors. i love goyard and the small boutique feel but id rather give my business elsewhere. the irony too is i can walk across to chanel and spend 3 times the prices easily or to LV and spend similar pricing and they’re all so amazing and friendly! goyard lost a lifelong customer. i just can’t support a business where 90% of them treat customers so horribly :(


© Summer Wind Blog 2017 / site design by kiki and co. / disclosure