Racked is no longer publishing. Thank you to everyone who read our work over the years. The archives will remain available here; for new stories, head over to Vox.com, where our staff is covering consumer culture for The Goods by Vox. You can also see what we’re up to by signing up here.
Cropping up all over Southern California are Divorcée Sales, which are exactly what they sound like: Rich, no-longer-married California socialites selling off their Prada bags and Dior shoes, all in the name of closure and cash. But these aren't yard sales—they exclusively take place in "ballrooms of upscale hotels." The WSJ reports: "For these women, divorce means saying goodbye to a spouse, along with poignant farewells to Louis Vuitton, Christian Louboutin, Dolce and Gabbana, and walk-in closets."
At one of these particular sales, Julie Spira, a former radio and Internet executive, had a lot to sell. "I had a very glamorous lifestyle. I had to look a certain way." Looking a certain way included a $25,000 necklace of baguette diamonds, which at the time of the sale, was up for grabs.
Jill Alexander, a former manager for Tory Burch who has never been married but is now a little leery of doing so because she's "heard stories" from these women, started the sales when her friends began to get divorced. This is how the initial meeting with a new client seems to play out: "On a typical day, Ms. Alexander shows up at the mansion of a stranger, bringing cupcakes, tissues and a shoulder to cry on. 'It's very intimate,' she said, 'and it can get emotional.'"
But in the end, the tears and the cupcakes all seem worth it, because there's big bucks to be made. "I have 60 gowns and who needs 60 gowns?" Spira said, adding, "It's time for a more realistic lifestyle."
· These Boots Were Made for Selling [WSJ]