The Birkin Bag's Iconic History And Why It's So Expensive | ForbesJul 17, 2023
the top had my collectors in the world are interested in the bags made by our mass our mass is a designer brand today, but was founded in 1837 as a harness workshop in the 1880s aramezics managed in chairs riding and then at the beginning of the century when the When the automobile was invented, it was very important for our medicines to diversify its offering to remain relevant in this changing world and one of the pieces created by Hermes were handbags. I'm the head of sales here at Seth Bees for bags and accessories. We have a buy now platform and auction platform for our bag accessories.
Sotheby's is the premier luxury and fine art destination for us in handbags and accessories. We were established in 2018 with our first choice and then launched our buy now platform in 2020, so What sets us apart from other competitors is that we offer both buy now and auction to our customers, so Birkin has been around since 1984 and has been Named after Jane Birkin, a French celebrity who met the creative director of Hermes at the time and a family member, the Hermes Birkin is one of the most collectible bags made by Hermes. It was designed in the 1980s. It was created when Jane Birkin was sitting next to a Hermes executive on a flight.
She had her signature straw bag and she was putting it in an overhead compartment and it fell it fell it all fell to the floor and the gentleman sitting next to her said why don't you have a bag with pockets and she said I'll win her mess she'll make me one she I happened to be sitting next to the CEO of Hermes and the two together sketched the idea of the Birkin bag, this was in 1984 and three years later, this bag was launched to the public. You know, he has a cult following. It's supposed to be like that. the easiest bag to use, you know, is a symbol of you know, status for some people.
My responsibilities at Christie's include advising clients from around the world on their collections and organizing handbag auctions, whether single clients or multiple clients come together to create sales during special times at Christie's such as luxury week. I advise customers on their purchases. The best thing about a Birkin is that its silhouette will never essentially change. It's classic in every sense of the word, but it's one of the things that we're known for is different sizes and colors, so every season they release a new size, a new color and that's what people look for when they're trying to find one of the Birkins for them and the designers who created these bags.
Deer we know that 100 years ago were ingenious and have created
iconicshapes that today still resonate with collectors and bag buyers around the world. It's
iconicbecause when you look at it it doesn't scream dirty, it doesn't scream brand name, but you know it's a Birkin and you know it's Hermes, so you know it's hard to get because they are made in a limited amount each year and the need outweighs the need. accessibility. The pieces are made in such an exquisite way that not only are the materials and the artisans who are experts in this? In this method and peace shapes are essential to make the Birkin look exactly as it did in the 1980s.
The Kelly is the same shape as when it was first created in the 1930s. and if you buy one of With these pieces, not only will the condition remain in exquisite shape but the style will never become outdated. You know the Birkin has really been able to stand the test of time and it's really because of how classic it is. I know that although trends come and go because it is something that is so beautifully made and so classic that it has really been able to outlast some of its other competitors, making it one of the most
expensivebags sold at Sotheby's, we have an example here. the Himalaya Kelly at our auction that took place last September we had a hammer for 350,000 or so, you know, and with these sales we set a record for a bag sold at auctions in the United States and Europe.
The thing about bags is that they are such personal objects and a reflection on your own style maybe your work where you live that um there really is something for everyone
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