You know the history. Hermes created the bag for Jane Birkin after the contents of her bag spilled out on an airplane, proving she needed something of proper size (and chicness) to tote all of her stuff.
But why, exactly, have Birkins maintained their unparalleled and unshaken air of mystery, beyond their obvious elegance? Why has their prestige status remained unrivaled?
It’s a variety of factors, from the secrecy regarding how many are made and sold per year, the fact that we don’t know how much the bag effects the Hermes bottom line, and of course, the all-important element of perception.
The piece explains how Hermes boutiques operate in somewhat independent fashion, but that’s not what intrigues me most. It’s the way that the Birkin continues to thrill and inspire lust.
Here are some key points about how the Birkin maintains its mystique, besides the fact that it remains a fabulous status symbol sans any loud and proud logos. Women want to carry a Birkin since it’s not ostentatious.
1. The Quality
In case you didn’t know, the bag really is the gold standard in
craftsmanship and timelessness. It is a classic shape. One person, who
is highly trained and highly skilled, makes the bag and it takes nearly
20 hours to complete, from stem to stern; that person selects the
leather or the skin to be used and puts the bag through quality control
tests, according to BoF.
3. Fashion Darwinism
4. Walk Ins Aren’t Welcome!
5. Going Through Customs
Essentially, the Hermes brand has cornered the market on supreme prestige bags and while there could be another brand to come down the pike to try and knock the Birkin off its perch, you can’t mess with history and legacy when it’s paired with some secrecy and perception. That’s quite a cocktail for success.