Fashion for Hire

ILLUSTRATION FOR TIME BY PETER ARKLE; HANDBAGS: DAVID LEVENSON FOR TIME

Designer handbags make a statement, but no self-respecting fashionista wants to keep repeating herself. Help is here from Handbag Hire HQ www.handbaghirehq.co.uk, which rents luxury bags to customers in the U.K. and Ireland. For $15 a month, clients gain access to the latest must-have accessories at a fraction of their retail value: the $990 Mulberry Bayswater, the $1,200 Louis Vuitton Hampstead and the $2,500 Chloé Paddington are available for $50, $60 and $70 per week, respectively. Customers receive their orders by post within two days.

Customer motivations vary as much as the bags themselves. "Some clients...

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