We’ve all heard the three iconic words Hermès Birkin Bag before. Ever wondered how the Hermès Birkin bag became the most desirable bag and has maintained that unreachable status for over three decades? Infamous for its exceptional craftsmanship and jaw-dropping price that continues to rise, it has become the most iconic it bag worldwide. Hermès has triumphed in maintaining the bag’s untouchable reputation, as one of the world’s most desirable luxury handbags, the Birkin has always been the ultimate symbol of status. From their synonymous orange packaging to the extensive waiting lists, we are going to explore the history and ever-growing drive for it bag of the century.
The History of HERMÈS
First, a little history. In 1837, Thierry Hermès founded his namesake business in Paris as a horse harness shop, dedicated to serving European noblemen. Winning various awards during the late 1800s, Hermès earned a reputation as one the finest producers of leather goods for horses — crafting all-things equestrian from saddles to bags, boots and hats. His son Charles-Émile later moved the HERMÈS flagship shop to 24 rue du Faubourg Saint-Honoré in 1880, where it remains to this day.
By the 1900s, under the founder’s grandson Émile-Maurice, HERMÈS became the official saddler for the Czar of Russia and the first brand to introduce the zipper on leather goods in France. After producing golf garments for the Prince of Wales in 1918, HERMÈS began its first foray into leather handbags in 1922. Haute couture followed, along with an expansion into jewelry, watches, porcelain goods, and scarves.
Price Increases and Investment Values
So what really makes HERMÈS bags so special?
“It’s the fact that these bags are handmade. It takes high-brow craftsmanship and attention to detail to make them — not to mention the amount of time the artisans dedicate to manufacturing each and every bag.” Because of this (and the fact that these artisans are far and few), HERMÈS bags are not as widely available, meaning they’re super exclusive.
Is a HERMÈS bag a good investment?
“They are a good investment, because they gain value with time — from the moment you walk out of the store with the beautiful orange carrier bag.”
How do you care for your HERMÈS bags?
“My philosophy is that people are to be loved, and things to be used. Of course, people spend a lot of money on HERMÈS bags, so naturally, you want to take care of them. My advice would be to fill them in with bag shapers, try not to wear them in the rain or humid weather, and avoid overpacking them with heavy bits as this can really weigh down the leather.”
Do you have your eye on your next HERMÈS purchase? Which is next on your wishlist?
“Always. The moment I walk out of the HERMÈS store I already know what I am looking forward to next as I like to build my wardrobe based on my needs. I have few colorful options for spring/summer, but also the neutrals are so stunning all year round. Believe it or not (besides my HERMÈS Mini Kelly), I still don’t own a classic black Kelly or Birkin for everyday use. Perhaps this one should be next on my list.”