Hermès Birkin 101

Birkin Box

The ultimate status bag, the Hermès Birkin, is at the top of every girl’s wish list. But to truly appreciate the Birkin in all its beauty and to be worthy of its fabulousness is to be knowledgeable on everything about it. We all know Hermès bags are crafted by hand with the most amazing skins in the world. And by now even my housekeeper is aware of the secret blindstamp and craftsman ID on the strap. But it is not just the Hermès stamp and logo that makes one a “Bag Snob!” There is so much about Hermès bags that makes them the finest in the world. First, the tissue paper. I have had many conversations with various Hermès Managing Directors and they all love talking about the tissue paper. Apparently there are special tissue paper craftsman who spend their entire lives folding tissue paper for Hermes bags! They make little pillows for the Birkin to rest upon and layers of “blankets” to protect it. It is suggested that you keep the bag exactly as the day you opened it, sleeping on the little pillow will allow it to keep its shape for life!

Birkin BoxBirkin Pillow


The stitching on Hermès bags is also unparalleled. It is so sturdy you can carry rocks in them! (or if you are the Bag Snob, 10 pounds of baby necessities). The stitiching is usually the first giveaway between faux or real. The real deal should have a very uniform and slight tilt to it while the fake is crooked and uneven.

Dsc02272.jpgDsc02273.jpg

All of the exotic skins also come with certificates, which is handy when traveling. Now what other bag has its own passport? For the true aficionados, try to get an invitation to tour the private Hermès museum next time you are in Paris and get a complete history of all things Hermes!

52 Comments

  1. paz
    March 31, 2006 / 9:48 pm

    you’re right! and the raincoats, and the certificates for the exotic skins, and the little orange bag for the key and padlock! it’s the whole ceremony that comes with it that makes it the ultimate luxury purchase!

  2. Michelle O
    April 1, 2006 / 3:17 pm

    Oh Birkin how we love thee…..

  3. K
    April 2, 2006 / 10:38 pm

    I can’t wait to get that call when my red one comes in!!!

  4. Isabel
    March 8, 2007 / 12:17 pm

    Just curious, what does the letter which is embossed on the strap mean? I’m newcomer and have just purchased my first birkin! (a 25cm in black)

    Thanks!

  5. Tobey
    March 23, 2007 / 3:42 pm

    I just purchased a Kelly bag on e-bay and I am trying to educate myself to make sure that my bag is real… what is the “…secret blindstamp and craftsman id on the strap”? And should I just take it to Neiman’s or someplace to check it out for me to alleviate my worries??? Thanks!!

  6. RGM
    April 3, 2007 / 12:50 am

    Bagsnob,

    I need to ask you some questions. I basically want to know how much a Birkin would cost in the US. I know it’s a range usually (depends on leather type, color, etc.), but let’s say, how much would a Black, 30 cm, Togo Birkin cost? I’ve heard it’s US$6,500? or is it much more expensive now?

    Also, how long is the waiting list now? And how does it actually work? Do you just sign up, and when they say that your bag is finally getting made by the craftsman, is that the only moment you pay? Or do you have to make a downpayment (like they do with LV commissions) when you get on the wish list?

    And I’ve heard that Hermes asks its clientele to send Hermes bags back to France to have it “refreshed” and to make it look new again EVERY YEAR. Is this true? I only know that they do offer complimentary re-stitching of leather articles, if need be.

    Thanks so much, and your blog is my new addiction! It’s really a fun and informative read! I love it!

    RGM

  7. Bag Snob Tina
    April 3, 2007 / 8:17 am

    Hi RGM

    Prices for black togo 30cm is around $6,700. As for the list, you do not pay until that birkin is in your hot little hands. You can’t just sign up, you have to make friends with a sales associate in order to get on the list. It’s closed in most cities but you can still try in your local boutique.

    Cities like St. Barts, Florence Italy, etc usually have stock so always check when traveling!

    xo

  8. RGM
    April 3, 2007 / 11:06 am

    Bag Snob Tina,

    Thanks so much! 😀 You just don’t know how helpful you have been for me! I’ll be travelling to the States and would let you know how getting my name in the list works out!

    RGM

  9. Zoerose
    April 11, 2007 / 12:49 pm

    I was reading the information given on this say to tell wether you could tell is your bag is real or faux. I s the anything else on the bag that you could use to tell if the bag is real or faux?

  10. anonymous
    April 29, 2007 / 10:27 am

    to isabel

    the letter on the strap is the first letter of the craftsman who made the entire bag by hand. it’s one of those rewards for the craftsmen, they get to personally sign each bag.

  11. Latish
    April 30, 2007 / 11:53 am

    I want to purchase a Hermes Birkin bag but I want to be sure it is authentic before I purchase it. I am getting it from an associate of mine. It is a Hermes White Ostrich Birkin bag with gold hardware. I am not sure how to tell if it is authentic. I love these bags but I never purchased one because I thought it would be impossible to get one. From what I do know there should be a year stamp on it. What year should I be looking for on this bag? What amount should I be paying? Associate or not I don’t want to be over charged. Please help me. I really want to get this bag. It is so beautiful! Any additional information would be greatly appreciated also. Thank you so much

  12. anonymous
    September 9, 2007 / 6:34 pm

    I am absolutely in love with the Birking Bag. I desperatly want one, but i was wondering, what sizes do they come in? like a 40 cm in just plain black leather, how much would that cost?

  13. suzan asli aslan
    February 10, 2008 / 6:01 am

    hello;

    would like to learn something about the birkin bag & other hermes bags. does birking bags have a regesrtered stamp on the cover of the palladium gadget?

  14. Stephanie Iverson
    February 26, 2008 / 4:10 pm

    Hello – I am trying to find out if there are any Hermes stores that will put me on a birkin list even if I’m not a regular customer and cannot go in every day to “schmooze” because I don’t have one locally.

    I don’t mind waiting for one, but I cannot afford to go in an purchase many items to gain the relationship with the SA before I purchase a Birkin. In other words, the Birkin will be it!!

    I recently called a Hermes store that is a couple hours from where I live and the SA told me they would not sell me a Birkin unless I become a regular customer!!

    Can anyone out there help??

    I’m deperate for a Birkin and want to buy it from a Hermes store (not a reseller)!!!

    thanks for any help!!! Stephanie 🙂

  15. dan
    March 26, 2009 / 4:47 am

    Hi,

    I would like to ask something about birkin bag…if you buy birkin bag from the hermes store, will the blind stamp code appears on the receipt (the recipt will show the code of blind stamp)???

    thanks, please help me out

  16. patricia
    April 12, 2009 / 7:32 am

    …this is one smart marketing campaign 😉

  17. SUE GREER
    April 28, 2009 / 3:01 pm

    I purchased a vintage Black Hermes Kelly bag when I was in Paris this month. The boutique stated the bag dates back to the 60’s. It is in pristine condition for it’s age. I paid 3800 Euro which equates to $5000 US dollars. Vintage seems to be quite the thing these days but I may have overpaid? I’m wondering how I would treat the bag to retain it’s beauty. Thank you in advance.

  18. Hermes Birkin 35 blue for sale
    August 10, 2009 / 8:10 pm

    Fore sale:Authentic Hermès Birkin 35 Blue Jean Togo Leather Handbag

    Its very hard to get in any Hermes store.

    I would like to sell it for $17000

    email me at greatserv@gmail.com for all photos of the bag

    The dimensions of the bag are:

    35 cm L x 25 cm H x 20 cm W

    or

    13.8″ L x 9.8″ H x 7.9″ W

    The bag is brand new, just like you buy it at the boutique and was never used

  19. lee
    August 17, 2009 / 1:16 am

    hi,may i know the address of the shop u bought the vintage bag from in paris? but how do u tell if it’s genuine? do send me an email itootu@yahoo.com. many tks.

  20. Lesha
    August 22, 2009 / 8:41 pm

    Doesn’t the Birkin only date as far back as 1984?

  21. jean
    August 29, 2009 / 11:44 am

    Hi, I’ve been given a Hermes Birkin by a friend, who is lives in Dubai, it is quite a bit used, and has no lock, the letaher inside(sort of like pigskin) has a couple of small tears, it has been well used, I just wanted to know if it is a real or a fake, I didn’t really want to ask my friend, I felt a bit rude to ask, maybe you could help, thanks so much, Jean

  22. February 9, 2010 / 4:04 pm

    Handbag Fore sale!!

    Authentic Hermès Birkin

    Size: 35cm

    Available colour: Purple, Etoupe & Maroon (All ready stock)

    Leather: Togo

    Include: Original Box, Original Dust Box, Original Clochette

    We sell the bags wihout Lock, Key & Rain Protector.

    Each bag only $9000.

    Special price: $17000 for 2 pieces

    Hot deal: $25000 for 3 pieces.

    The bags are 100% brand new, cheap & authentic.

    Contact me,

    Marsha Ayudia

    bb pin: 20e6a25c

    email: shasasha@hotmail.com or ayudia.marsha@yahoo.com

    profile: facebook.com/sashairawan

    mob.phone: 6281808930350

    • feisal marjan
      May 14, 2014 / 4:16 am

      please call me 00971508449351

  23. Haydee
    February 10, 2010 / 8:10 am

    I’m selling the following HERMES:

    1) Hermes Constance Crocodile Porosus in Black 18cm

    2) Hermes Constance Black Leather 18cm

    3) Hermes Mini Kelly Crocodile Porosus in Black 20cm

    4) Drag Bag 32cm

    5) Hermes Kelly 32cm in Gold Leather

    Visit http://coolchic.multiply.com and email me at athaydees@gmail.com for more info. 🙂

    thanks! 🙂

  24. Kristin Owen
    May 27, 2010 / 3:46 pm

    What color is the authenticity card that comes with a Birkin bag?

  25. jose newhati
    August 7, 2010 / 5:33 pm

    i am a very lucky owner of a 30cm fuchia pink hermes birkin.i am a die hard louis vuitton fan,but i must admit the classic lines and sheer beauty of a birkin is second to none.the craftmanship is unbelievable!love and enjoy!x

  26. Covet Couture
    August 24, 2010 / 2:47 am

    Hi everyone,

    We currently have the following brand new exotic skin Hermes Birkins available for purchase, together with original box and all original accessories including lock and key, rain jeacket, dustbag etc.

    1) 35cm Fuchsia Shiny Porosus Crocodile with Gold hardware

    2) 35cm Blue Brighton Matt Alligator with Gold hardware

    We also have an extensive range of normal leather Birkins readily available now in various sizes and a wide variety of colours, including Orange, Bleu De Malt (new colour for 2010),Bougainvillea, Black, Gold, Blue Jean, Etoupe, Tabac Camel etc.

    For further enquiries or details, please feel free to contact us at covetmoi@gmail.com.

    Best wishes,

    Covet Couture

  27. September 27, 2010 / 10:33 am

    I want to sell my Authentic Hermes Birkin Orange size 30, Togo Leather, Gold Buckle, Stamp N. complete all with box, receipt, dustbag, lock, raincoat, etc.

    The bag is 100% new, bought 1 month ago from Paris, never been used ( I want to change or trade it with size 35)

    Location Jakarta,Indonesia.

    GUARANTEED 100% AUTHENTIC OR DOUBLE YOUR MONEY BACK!

    Serious buyer only.

    For price and more detail pictures :

    call/SMS : +6281808806683

    email : grimmauld_place12th@msn.com

    blackberry PIN : 258C9CE9

  28. Nonsense
    October 22, 2010 / 11:38 am

    Why would anyone pay $10K for a bag! Or accept a worn out, lockless, and damaged original as a gift? I am all about quality not quantity, but you can get that same quality from a different designer for a couple hundred dollars. Why not be original? For $10k I better be the only one with a particular style bag. Unless you’re a millionaire, why sacrifice so much money. No one will believe you anyways.

  29. Just trying to be honest
    October 25, 2010 / 7:50 pm

    I really need some assistance. I have an orange Hermes Birkin that was given to me and without going into the details, I wish to sell. I want to be sure it is authentic so that I do not scam someone. It has all the signs that it is authentic, however one can never be too sure. It has the dust bag, as well as the lock and key. It is in mint condition and has the rain covers as well as a small folder with two cards in it. The folder lists all the stores and there numbers and there is a small business card with the name “SOGO YOKOHAMA” on it. There is a “N” stamp, as well as the number 23C. I did not purchase this bag myself and due to my recent finances would like to sell it, if it is authentic but as I said, I need to be sure first.

  30. Miranda
    October 29, 2010 / 6:15 am

    I would like to buy a Hermes Birkin bag, I am saving for one at the moment s there anyone still looking to sell? The best way to check if a bag is authentic is to go into the store and ask.

  31. Fanny
    November 3, 2010 / 8:43 pm

    Yes, there is no such thing as a Birkin VINTAGE bag. So you def overpaid.

  32. Jessica
    November 20, 2010 / 7:18 pm

    Hi, I have as 32 cm black Kelly Bag, and I am trying to authenticate it. I was wondering where I would find the craftsman’s initial? Also, where the handle strap meets the top of the bag, in the loop of the handle where handle attaches the the ring that attaches to the bag it self, what color would that be? Also, is there any glue used in attaching the handle to the bag? Thanks for your help!

  33. Anonymous
    November 23, 2010 / 1:40 am

    HI I HAVE A BRAND NEW 30 TOGO BIRKIN IN IRIS COLOUR FOR SELL. GARRENTY AUTHENTIC WITH ALL REQUIRE INFOR. IF ANYONE INTEREST PLEASE EMAIL ME @ teddy17akjc@yahoo.com

    PLEASE, SERIOUS BUYER ONLY..:)

  34. AK
    November 23, 2010 / 1:42 am

    HI I HAVE A BRAND NEW 30 TOGO BIRKIN IN IRIS COLOUR FOR SELL. GARRENTY AUTHENTIC WITH ALL REQUIRE INFOR. IF ANYONE INTEREST PLEASE EMAIL ME @ teddy17akjc@yahoo.com

    PLEASE, SERIOUS BUYER ONLY..:)

  35. Anonymous
    November 23, 2010 / 1:46 am

    i m ooking to sell mine. if u’r interest email me.

  36. Alexa from London -again
    December 29, 2010 / 10:58 am

    Correction- sorry, the hardware of my bag is not Palladium, it is gold plated. I told you I haven’t used it at all!

    Alexa

  37. Anonymous
    February 11, 2011 / 12:17 am

    I have the exact bag, with the exact number 23C stamped N. It also has the two cards you listed with the same name. I came on here to also post if it was authentic? Is it possible that they are both stamped the same number or are they individually numbered?

    • Just trying to be honest
      February 19, 2012 / 10:33 pm

      Hi, I am the person that posted…
      “I really need some assistance. I have an orange Hermes Birkin that was given to me and without going into the details, I wish to sell. I want to be sure it is authentic so that I do not scam someone. It has all the signs that it is authentic, however one can never be too sure. It has the dust bag, as well as the lock and key. It is in mint condition and has the rain covers as well as a small folder with two cards in it. The folder lists all the stores and there numbers and there is a small business card with the name “SOGO YOKOHAMA” on it. There is a “N” stamp, as well as the number 23C. I did not purchase this bag myself and due to my recent finances would like to sell it, if it is authentic but as I said, I need to be sure first.”
      It has been over a year and I am no closer to an answer. I noticed that yours had the same stamp and card and wanted to see if you had any further information?

  38. vlb
    June 29, 2011 / 3:19 am

    You need much worse crisis, you silly people…

  39. Stitch
    September 2, 2011 / 9:37 am

    why some togo leather birkin have a lil square something after the HERMES PARIS on the buckle? what does it stand for?

  40. geeta
    September 5, 2011 / 1:57 pm

    looking for a croco birkin 30 cm

  41. September 13, 2011 / 2:58 pm

    can someone please tell me how much a brandnew black 35 togo birkin in black would cost from the hermes shop? thanks

  42. Miranda
    October 1, 2011 / 6:53 pm

    I have a Hermes Birkin 35cm Bag for sale. It is used but in overall good condition. I have had the bag since 2010 when I purchased it. It is stamped on the inside with the letter “N” for the year 2010. I have all authenticity cards and bags that it came with. This bag is authentic and can be taken by any Hermes store or sent in to guarantee it’s authenticity.

    Please email me with any questions or for more pictures, I would be happy to answer. Thanks.

    Size: 35 cm
    Color: Tan Togo Leather
    Leather: Togo
    Date of Purchase: 2010
    Stamp: N
    Bag Condition: Used
    Price: $7900
    Original Box: No
    Original Dust Box: Yes
    Original Rain Protection: Yes
    Original Lock, Key, and Clochette: Yes
    Original Receipt Provided: No
    Location: Tennessee, TN, USA

  43. Jo
    October 12, 2011 / 7:49 am

    Hi, i have for sale my beautiful Hermes Birkin 35cm Handbag, it is coffee in colour with palladuim hardware, bought in 2008, hardly used therefore still in immaculate condition.

    The bag is stamped with the letter ‘L’.

    Comes with original dust bags, box and receipt, keys and lock also.

    This bag is a genuine hermes handbag and this will be confirmed by any hermes outlet or expert.

    Contact me for any more information joyce1963@ymail.com

    Thanks 🙂

  44. Beth
    October 16, 2011 / 10:57 am

    hi,
    I am selling a few HERMES bags for a friend which I am going to put up on ebay. I don’t know much about them. She gave me approximate prices and all the info she knows. I have a 30CM Vintage Black Birkin with gold hardware, A 28 cm black Kelly Bag with gold hardware a Trim? I think that is the name in black with textured leather and gold hardware and a Navy small long strap double fold purse which I don’t know how to describe. It is vintage. I want to use the right names in my description. THey are all definitely authentic, Vintage Hermes and in pristine condition.
    Thank you everyone. I just found this blog today.
    All the best,
    Beth

  45. jane moore
    October 21, 2011 / 12:56 pm

    I would be really grateful if you could tell me what year my hermes red trim bag is,the blindstamp says MA,the clasp is stamped HS40 any information about my bag and valuation,it’s in perfect condition would be thankfully received jane moore

  46. Mei Leen
    December 8, 2011 / 8:30 pm

    Hi there,

    Can I ask you for your advice on Hermes 35cm ostrich birkin. I understand that Hermes stopped production of the 35cm in 2008. A friend of mine wants to sell hers; only problem is it is stamped as N ie. 2010!! Is this a fake/ it is possible for that eventhough Hermes stopped production in 2008, the last batch was only made this year also ie, O (2011)? Your advice is greatly appreciated!!

  47. Shannon
    April 16, 2012 / 4:34 am

    Hi, I was wandering if anyne can help me I have closeup photos of my bag and was wandering if anyone thinks it may be authentic. It is vintage and has been given to me.

  48. heaven
    November 10, 2013 / 6:20 pm

    If anyone wants to buy a hermes birkin porosus crocodile 40cm This bag has orginal paperwork and used once Email me at heaven@qualityservice.com I can send you pictures

    A bag like this used are sold for 85k I am going to sale this bag for half the price

  49. isabel
    December 5, 2014 / 10:09 pm

    Hi,I was given a Hermes Kelly bag,(Green)many years ago by a rich lady,the problem is there are no Hermes mark or date mark, yet it has all the great workmanship,stiching ect,that makes it genuine,i live in London and wouldn’t have a clue where to bring it to have it authenticated and hopefully sell it,i have never carried it out,(don’t have the clothes to match it)lol,the money would sort me out,i would so much appreciate any information ,thank you for reading,heres hoping and good luck..x..isabel dempsey.

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