Why is HERMES Birkin bag expensive? Here are the reasons!
By WATANABE · September 18, 2019
HERMES Birkin is almost the synonym for high-end branded bag. Many ladies dream for owning a Birkin which is loved by celebrities around the world. However, some may think that they will never ever get it despite longing for it.
Apparently, it is true that Birkin bag is difficult to get. However, it is never out of reach. This time, we would like to share with you some basic information of Birkin and how to get it in special price!
Birkin 30, Leather / Togo, Color / Black
While HERMES was founded as a luxuruy harness brand by Tieria Hermes in 1837, HERMES Birkin was only released in 1984. Compared to the long history of HERMES, Birkin bag release date is surprisingly recent. In 1984, Jean-Louis Dumas, the then president of HERMES, coincidently met Jane Birkin, the famous actress and singer, on a plane.
At that time, the basket she was carrying was so fully stuffed that the contents almost spilled out. Dumas witnessed it and suggested that he will present a bag to her that would fit all her stuffs in the basket. This is how “Birkin”, a bag that women from all over the world desire for, is born. If the two didn't happen to sit next to each other, Birkin, the eternal classic masterpiece, may have never been born.
Although Dumas passed away in 2010, Jane Birkin is still active and is a Japanophile. After the Great East Japan Earthquake happened in 2011, she came to Japan within less than a month and held fundraising campaign on Shibuya streets as well as charity concert. These supportive activities of her had gained her a lot of attention. She was awarded the Order of the Rising Sun in the Spring Conferment of 2018 for her efforts in promoting cultural exchanges between Japan and France.
And Birkin bag is the masterpiece branded bag that bears the name of Jane Birkin. Let's take a closer look at the features of the bag.
What makes a Birkin Bag?
Birkin bag has elegant feature and is sturdy enough for everyday use. Here, we will explain the structure of Birkin bag by using the regular Birkin 30 (Material: Togo, Color: Etoup)
Birkin is made to remain sturdy even if you put in many items, and it comes with two handles to support that.
The flap is closed with the strap.
The flap can be opened and closed with the belt to cover the contents inside.
The strap is removed.
The flap has notches that match the position of the handle. Such a beautiful design.
The strap is fixed at the back of the bag, and it allows width adjustment acording to the contents without affecting the bag's elegant shape.
The strap can be hooked and fixed on this pontet.
It is common to use it as a handbag with flap remains inside.
Birkin has no partition inside and can be opened widely, allowing many items inside.
Zippered back pocket
With an open pocket on the front, and a zippered pocket on the back, these functional designs allow users to store small items separately.
There are four metal feet at the bottom to protect the bottom of the bag when it is placed.
When the flap is removed, you may see the HERMES stamp.
For the models that were manufactured by 2014, ID stamp indicating the year of production and craftsman is located on the inward side of the strap. For those manufactured from 2015, the mark is inside the bag, on the left side close to the flap.
It comes with cadena (padlock) and clochette, a symbol of HERMES.
Accessories. Comes with a large dust cover too.
There is also a rain cover in case you are caught in the rain. Such a kind consideration!
What is the difference between Kelly bag and Birkin bag?
Birkin 30 Verso Leather: Togo, Color: Blue Zanzibar x Malachite
Kelly bag, the bag that represents HERMES, is often confused with Birkin bag. However, you will be able to differentiate them if you know the features of each model.
Kelly bag is made of harder leather material than Birkin. Also, it's solid trapezoidal shape is self-supporting in maintaining its shape when it is placed on the floor or desk. There is only one handle. Because the Kelly bag is particular about the beauty of the appearance, it has no external pockets, maintaning a formal impression. A flap is attached so that the items inside the bag would not be seen, and it can be opened and closed by strap. However, the width is not adjustable, unlike Birkin. On the strap, there is cadena, the symbol of HERMES. As their strap and cadena look similar, it can be confused with the Birkin bag.
In addition, different sewing methods are used on Kelly bag, which include outer stitching and inner stitching, but only outer stitching is used on Birkin. Anyway, Kelly and Birkin bag can be distinguished easily if you pay attention to the number of handles.
Birkin bag size transition
Birkin bags distributed in Japan are usually comprised of the following four sizes. The number represents the length of the bag.
Birkin 25 Height: 20 cm, Length: 25 cm, Width: 13 cm
The smallest Birkin, it's elegant impression makes it the perfect size for short outings, parties etc. As there is not much space inside, it is suitable for the people who prefer smaller bags or do not carry many items. Note that it is difficult to be carried on the shoulder.
Birkin 30 Height: 22 cm, Length: 30 cm, Width: 16 cm
Birkin 30 is also called Japanese size even in France. It is popular in Japan since this size suits well with comparably petite-figured Japanese women. It can fit tablets and pocket notebooks, perfect for daily use.
Birkin 35 Height: 25 cm, Length: 35 cm, Width: 18 cm
A size that is suitable for business use. It can fit B5-sized documents. This is the most common size overseas. Many celebrities and top models enjoy carrying this Birkin bag with casual outfits such as jeans.
Birkin 40 Height: 30 cm, Length: 40 cm, Width: 21 cm
It can fit A4-sized documents. It is also the size Jane Birkin is using. It has enough capacity even for a 2D1N trip. Suitable for business use or even men.
In addition to these four sizes, there are also other sizes such as Birkin 45 or Shoulder Birkin.
Why is HERMES Birkin bag expensive?
Birkin 30 Officier Leather: Togo, Color: Vert Cypress/Bleu Zellige
The reference price of HERMES Birkin at authorized dealer stores
Birkin 25: JPY 1.15 million
Birkin 30: JPY 1.30 million
Birkin 35: JPY 1.45 million
Birkin 40: JPY 1.55 million
(For reference only; price may vary depends on color and material)
Most people may hold back as each Birkin bag is priced over JPY 1 million. However, HERMES Birkin has its own persistance and it makes sure that each Birkin bag is worth the price.
Extraordinary passion in sourcing top-grade leather
Founded as a producer of high-end leather harness, many of HERMES customers are royalties and nobles, hence HERMES is extremely particular with the quality of the leather. Leathers used for the products such as bags and wallets are usually sourced from tanneries, the wholesalers of leather. This is usually how other high-end brands source their leather too.
HERMES only sources its leather from top-class tanneries such as Tanneries du Puy and Tannerie d'Annonay in France. It select only the top few percents of leather traded by these top tanneries to be used on HERMES products. In other words, it is not an overstatement to say that HERMES monopolizes the best leather in the world. Most of the HERMES products we have here at Jackroad/Bettyroad are mainly watches, but you will still be impressed by the soft and flexible touch of the leather strap on these products, such as H watch, the classic HERMES watch.
Each Birkin bag using these cream of the crop leathers, is made only by a skilled craftsman during the whole manufacturing process. An ID representing the craftsman is then printed on the Birkin bag upon completion.
Birkin bags are solidly made and have such excellent quality that they can be passed on from parents to children and even grandchildren. Considering that, you now understand why each Birkin bag is priced over JPY 1 million.
Is it difficult to get a Birkin bag from authorized stores?
Birkin's premium value is also linked to the diffuculty in obtaining it. To be able to purchase Birkin bag from authorized stores at official price, you must first become an HERMES customer. Since Birkin bag is very limited, there will be no available stock at the store. However, when the stock becomes available, the customers will be contacted directly. Birkin is not the bag that you can purchase at first glance.
To become HERMES customer, you must first purchase HERMES product. By purchasing from the same staff of the same store repeatedly, you will be recognized as HERMES customer. Then, by continuously conveying your passion for owning a Birkin bag, you might be contacted when Birkins are available. However, do note that the available Birkins may not be in your desired color or material. If you reject the offer, there are possibilities that you may not be contacted anymore for Birkin restock in future. In other words, only a limited number of celebrities are able purchase Birkin at official price from authorized stores.> > HERMES Birkin ( website - japanese )