Shari Berg had no retail experience when she told her husband she wanted to open a store selling second-hand designer handbags and accessories.
“My husband thought it was completely crazy to get into a retail business, and he had no interest at all and thought I was crazy,” Berg says. “I was so busy that he had to come and help me,” she adds.
Berg owns Designer Exchange, a consignment shop in Syosset where she buys and sells gently used authentic designer bags, jewelry and accessories.
“I’ve had a passion for high-end designer bags for over 30 years,” says Berg, who grew up in Great Neck. Thus, she has a personal knowledge of what others like her want the most. Designer Exchange “has something for everyone,” she adds, and it offers layaway so “almost everyone can afford exceptional pieces.”
The store offers a large collection of Chanel, Hermès and Louis Vuitton products.
“We have a huge clientele ranging from people in their early twenties looking to start a collection and buy their first designer bag or accessory, to people in their 70s and 80s looking for a special place to complete their collection,” says Berg.
Berg notes that she prefers to buy and sell items in excellent condition, but she says those that are not are always considered if they are at least in good condition.
“While we like to offer bags in mint condition and price inventory accordingly, we offer more used items at a lower price,” says Berg. “Essentially, at the very high end, almost every condition has a price or a value.”
Prices range from $350 for a Gucci belt all the way up to $20,000 for a Hermes Birkin bag.
The store is located at 18 Jackson Ave. in Syosset. Hours are Tuesday, Wednesday and Saturday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.; and Thursday and Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. The shop is closed on Sunday and Monday; 516-422-2270, ldesignerexchange.com.