Louis Vuitton Rose NeoNoe
Feel free to skip over to the review portion of this blog post if you don't want to read about my [first world] struggles on the entire ordering process.
When this bag first came out in February of 2017, I instantly fell in love with it. I appeared all over my Instagram explore feed and was so intrigued by the design and colour palette. I first saw their pink and brown colour duo on the LV Neverfull Damier Ebene canvas bag and thought it complemented each other so well. I was never the biggest fan of their monogrammed canvas but the pink accent colour just sold me on it. What really hit the mark for me was the overall look of the bag, as notably the Neonoe was a redesign from their original Noe. I wasn't a fan of the Noe because it definitely stayed true to a lot of the traditional LV designs that often made me feel like it was targeted towards an older audience. The Neonoe however, was seamless and clean, which appealed to me immediately. I'm certain a big part of why it I was so quickly to fall in love with it was because it reminded me a lot of Mansur Gavriel's bucket bag - following a very clean design with strong accent colours complementing the interior and exterior of the bag. It was a bag I fell in love with a few years ago when I wasn't making any money for myself and was a distant dream. I recall fantasizing about the bag a lot as I would often mass reblog any photos of it on my Tumblr. Fast forward, the bag is way more affordable now ($595 vs. the Neonoe $1710), but I'm definitely out of that phase after obsessing over it for far too long. So when I came across the Neonoe in February, it definitely struck something in me.
THE HORRIBLE ORDERING PROCESS
Here starts my extremely long and irritating process of attaining this bag that I've so long yearned for since February (but technically much longer than that given my Mansur Gavriel bucket bag history right?). When I first saw this bag, I didn't cave right away. There were definitely a few days of "wow that's cute" and a few days of, "...that's really cute", and finally a bit more of "Fuck. That's CUTE". So I jumped onto their website ready to read all the details about this absolute cutie and found that it was not terribly expensive (compared to a lot of their other bags, but yes, it definitely is still expensive). I didn't purchase it that day, and told myself I would hold off and think about whether or not I really need it, because at the end of the day it's just a bag and I could definitely save my money for more practical matters. Of course, I kept thinking about it all night and decided that there was no way I was going to forget about it. With that in mind, I went to purchase the bag the next day, BUT it was sold out on the website which was super disappointing. I said it's fine. It's not meant to be. I'm over it. With that being said, I kept browsing Louis Vuitton's website hoping the call for availability would turn to place in cart. And surprise! It finally did! Ecstatic, I immediately placed my order and it went through - only I never received a confirmation email which made me a little skeptical. Of course I refreshed the website and the bag was, once again, call for availability. Obviously piecing together that there was a glitch, I called customer service and explained the situation to them, in which they confirmed it was sold out and definitely a glitch in the system. They told me they will refund the payment and instead, put me on the waitlist which was a 1-2 week wait (early March). She took my contact info and email and that was the end of that. The next day I realized I never got any sort of email confirmation so I decided to call back. This time, customer service told me that my bag was in fact, not ready until 4 weeks later (end of March). Disappointed once again, I said it was fine because I just wanted to have this bag and I was willing to wait. Oddly enough, I didn't get any email confirmation (should have been a red flag...) but thought it's probably fine, they wouldn't make that many mistakes. After this conversation I did not hear back for four months (one week ago).
I was texting my boyfriend and out of the blues, I told him, "I seriously think they forgot to put me on the waitlist...". He ended up calling for me that same day and they made some excuse about having never shipped this bag to Canada before, but two days later I got a confirmation email that said my bag was ready for purchase. Putting aside how irritated I was that they lied about putting me on the waitlist for 4 months and the bag conveniently being available the day he called in, I figured it's fine because it's all done and over now. So I called in, paid for my bag, and they said they would send me a confirmation email when my bag is shipped (this damn confirmation email...). Of course Monday rolls around and I did not receive any email. Instinctively, my boyfriend calls in and of course, turns out there was something went wrong in the system 'but it's totally fine now because I just submitted the order and it's being shipped out today'. I thought, cool as long it's moving now it's fine. Tuesday rolls by and I still don't get an email so my boyfriend calls in again, to which they said 'oh, I don't know what happened but I'll submit it now and it should be shipped today'. At this point I'm a little appalled by how inefficient their team is - who's organizing all this and how is anything being done with so many consecutive mistakes being made? Luckily, I got a confirmation email on the same day, so I was feeling happy enough to just overlook all that terrible customer service. Now after all this, I was finally content when I was casually looking at the confirmation email - they gave me a tracking number that specified it wouldn't be updated until 7PM EST. So when it was past 7PM EST, I clicked the tracking number and it directed me to FedEx along with a message that appeared to say this tracking number does not exist. I said it's fine, it's probably still updating I'll wait until tomorrow. Of course when I tried to look up the tracking number the next morning, the link directed me to FedEx's website with a message that said the code still does not exist. You know what whatever, I'm just going to wait. Finally finally finally, I get a package from UPS today and behold it was my bag. It was from UPS. Their email DIRECTED me to FedEx. By far the most unorganized and inefficient customer service I've ever had the displeasure of dealing with. Actually cross that, I meant the most unorganized and inefficient customer service my boyfriend had to deal with because he knows I'm too timid to do these things and he's an total sweetheart for taking care of this and calling in for me every single time during his break at work.
Pricepoint (in CAD) : This bag sits at a pretty decent price point in comparison to a lot of the other bags available at Louis Vuitton. Often times, their bag starts at around the $2500+ mark, with the majority of their handbags sitting around 3-4K, and a few at 5k. With that being said, the Neonoe seems very affordable at just $1710 (you're looking at around $1900 after taxes). In comparison to LV's other bucket bags, it's about $60 cheaper than the Noe and $200 more expensive than the Noe BB (a smaller version of their old design).
Quality: Personally I can understand why it's priced much lower than usual. The bag isn't nearly as intricate and difficult to produce as a lot of their other styles, which are more layered, structured and overall better lined. The bag itself feels extremely lightweight, which surprised me because it felt like I didn't even have a bag hanging from my shoulder. The bag is more seamless and I'm certain a big part of why it's so much cheaper is definitely the fact that they went for the raw finish style, finishing off with just a line of stitching across the edge. This should have saved them a huge chunk of time and money without having to stitch another layer of leather all round the opening. With that being said, I love that they left it like that.
The Neonoe doesn't nearly feel as structured because their panels really just softly fold against each other. The leather is thin and soft, featuring their monogrammed printed exterior, and suede throughout their interior. Overall, still a very high quality bag (of course it would have to be), emphasizing a minimal and youthful design.
Practicality: Despite how tiny the Neonoe looks, it's actually quite spacious. You can easily fit all your essentials (Wallet, keys, makeup, sunglasses, etc.) without having it look too bulky. I saw a video where someone even packed their iPad Mini, which perfectly fits. In terms of sizing, I heard it was very comparable to the LV Speedy. I do enjoy the fact that it's an open top bag because I usually don't like figeting with zippers, buttons or flaps, and easy access is a huge bonus for me (a big part of why the Neverfull was my go to bag for the last 4 years, but the GM is just way too big for casual usage now that I've graduated).
I think it's nice that they included a zippy pouch which also doubles as a divider for the bag. The only downside I find is that it's definitely very narrow, and the zippy opening is a little small and awkward to maneuver especially since the bag is a little deeper. With the divider in place, it's a little hard to throw in anything too big since you only have half the space to work with, which means I likely can't fit my DSLR. However, the pouch is a nice touch and definitely adds some value to the overall look of the bag.
Another bonus I love are the straps. They come double up, but you could unsnap the buttons from both side to create a longer strap that could act as a cross body bag. I also like how the strap is interchangeable in case you decide to upgrade to something more luxurious like their matching Bandouliere.
Overall, I'm very excited about this bag. The lousy ordering process really doesn't affect the way I feel towards the bag at all. I feel like it made me love it all the more because of how difficult it was to attain haha! I believe Rose was made as a limited edition colour that was featured for their Spring/Summer collection, but red and black will still be available to purchase down the road. Recently they also created a yellow version (which I am not the biggest fan of, but it does look very summer appropriate...). Currently the Neonoe is still sold out in stores and online, and I believe those that are selling it second hand or new online have raised the price more than its retail value, which is quite ridiculous. With that being said, if this is a bag that you've been debating about, I say get on that waitlist because you won't be disappointed (about the bag, you will definitely be disappointed about their customer service).