Burberry is surely the king of fashion customisation. So far it has monogrammed scarves, ponchos, perfume bottles and now, trench coats. Starting this week, you can monogram your trench coat using an online tool that gives you up to three initials in a selection of 15 thread colours. The beauty of the online tool is that it lets you preview what your monogrammed trench will look like before you press the ’buy’ button.
The monogramming trend does throw up one quandary for me however. Having been gifted a few monogrammed items by brands during the last year or two, one is faced with the dilemma, ‘what do I do if I don’t like it?’ A monogrammed item is pretty tricky to re-gift or resell and when it comes to something iconic and luxurious like a Burberry trench, I think it’s trickier still.
The beauty of classics is that they do have a high resale value. That’s why they’re considered investments. So in the (albeit unlikely) event that you tire of your monogrammed Burberry trench, you’re not going to get as much for it at resale as you would if it was plain.
Of course, some people don’t mind wearing someone else’s initials. If you’re shopping for yourself, you’ll make that choice. In terms of vintage it can even be quite charming to know that an item has had a life and a story before it arrived in your hands (or on your back). But if you’re looking to buy a gift and land on a pristine trench or shirt being resold on eBay or Vestiaire Collective, but it has someone else’s initials, wouldn’t that make you pause?
We live in a world where people buy things to wear for a certain amount of time before they resell it on Depop in order to buy something else. It’s a kind of eco-conscious way of consuming, while still having a fast fashion mentality. I guess the difference with something as classic and spendy as a Burberry trench is it’s a considered purchase. If you’re the kind of person who buys a monogrammed Burberry trench, you’re probably expecting to hold onto it for life. Let’s hope so anyway.