Economic Insights

The most expensive handbag in the world

Would you pay more than €200,000 for a handbag? This is the record price reached by a Hermes handbag at an auction held in Hong Kong.

Leeson. 02/06/2015
Bolso Birkin de Hermés
Hermes Birkin bag

HK$1.72 million, equivalent to about €204,600 (at current exchange rates). This is what the buyer has paid for a “Birkin” handbag, made by alligator and color fuchsia of the French luxury brand Hermès. The bag was sold at an auction organized by Christie’s in Hong Kong

This figure has broken all records, surpassing the €200,000 paid in 2011 by a bag decorated with gold and diamonds that belonged to Elizabeth Taylor. The previous record for a Hermes bag was €186,000, a 10% less.

El Birkin se ha vendido por más de 200.000 euros
The Birkin was sold for 200,000 euros

The “Birkin” is perhaps the most exclusive and world renowned Hermès product. It was named after actress and singer Jane Birkin, with a peculiar origin. According to the protagonist who gives the name to the bag, during a plane trip he sat next to the president of Hermès. During the flight she dropped her´s bag contents and the president of the French firm offered her to design a special one to fit her needs. Birkin drew a picture of what she considered an ideal bag and … “Birkin” was a fact.

Today the cheapest “Birkin” costs $6,000, although theoretically have to wait two years to get one, so it is common to reach stratospheric prices at resale. It is also common to customize certain “details” such as manufactured in crocodile instead of goatskin, the palladium metal parts for gold, adding diamonds… each of these changes shoots its value even more.

Julianne Moore, Ashley Olsen y Elizabeth Hurley con bolsos Birkin de Hermès
Julianne Moore, Ashley Olsen and Elizabeth Hurley with Hermes Birkin bags

Disclosure: The author is not responsible for the views expressed in the article. The text was written freely expressing ideas, without receiving any compensation. The author has no business relationship with any of the companies whose shares are listed in this article.

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