Right before I left for Europe, I made a trip to Plato's closet to sell some goods. While I waited, I spotted a Burberry trench coat nestled away in the racks. I couldn't believe my eyes (it was excitement similar to the time I found the Chanel wool trousers at the Salvation Army)! The price tag said $30, which seemed too good to be true. I was in a rush, but tried to authenticate the coat via some online resources before I purchased it. One thing with thrifting designer goods, is that the quality of materials is usually the biggest distinguisher. I've heard a lot of women tell me that they just don't know enough designers to be able to spot a luxury good. Pay attention to the weight of the material, the stitching, the fabric- if it's a high end item, all of these things will be present. When you touch the item, it will just feel more solid, well constructed.
So back to this trench coat- well the first thing that caught my eye was the label with the name "Burberrys'" versus "Burberry", that seemed odd to me. But I found some sources online that states that there are at least two types of Burberry labels, the first one reads 'Burberrys' (First character is capital B, the rest are small and with s. The single quotes are also written) and the second one reads BURBERRY (all capital, without s). Apparently the company changed the label from 'Burberrys' to BURBERRY back in the 90s.
Some other tips I found online were: Pay attention to the colors (The plaid should include a light tan, white, navy, and red. Any other colours, such as green, yellow or brown, are not authentic); The Burberry plaid should be symmetrical and line up evenly at seams. The pattern should always be continuous; The stitches should be high-quality and even; The true Burberry pattern is three faint navy stripes crossing each other with white in between the lines; The label should be sewn on neatly.
So I ended up buying the coat, everything seemed to match up to the info I found online and the coat was heavy and felt quality made. Now I just need to get it dry cleaned, and for the weather to cool down, and we're in business!