For some reason, it seems like the entirety of the fashion Internet has been talking about how to buy a Birkin lately. Lauren Sherman wrote about the bag’s enduring appeal for Bloomberg, Megs mentioned how she got hers in an interview with Racked and this one Harper’s Bazaar story on the process keeps tumbling down my Facebook newsfeed. If I’ve learned anything in my time at PurseBlog, though, it’s that there’s no One True Way to get a Birkin.

Tales of wait lists and long-term relationship-building with Hermès boutique employees abound, but Megs got her black Birkin by going into a store where she had no prior purchase history and asking nicely. Authentic Birkins are bought and sold every day on eBay, buyers are more than willing to scoop them up at traditional auctions like Heritage or Christie’s and sites like Moda Operandi regularly host short-term sales of expertly sourced Birkins. In some ways, getting a Birkin now is easier than ever, as long as you’re not a stickler about buying it directly from the brand. (And, in many cases, as long as you’re not picky about paying a markup for the immediate gratification.)

There are, of course, many people who become trusted Hermès clients and eventually get offered the bag of their dreams; our PurseForum is filled with stories about magical calls from Hermès boutiques, many out of the blue. The purchase of almost any bag has a story, and when the particular bag starts at $10,000 and only goes up from there, the stories are often well worth a listen. Today, we’d like to hear yours. Did you stick with the traditional route, get lucky or seek out alternative avenues?

P.S. Please consider supporting our small, bag-loving team by clicking our links before shopping or checking out at your favorite online retailers like Amazon, Neiman Marcus, Nordstrom, or any of the listed partners on our shop page. We truly appreciate your support!

Share Your Thoughts With Us

  • Dylan Propst

    I’ve have had 3 experiences buying Birkins. Be warned, this story is loooooong.

    The first time, I hadn’t built up as much of a relationship with H as I have now. I went in, bought a scarf and a bracelet, and at the checkout, I decided to ask if it was possible to see a Birkin (oh how naive I was). They told me that they didn’t have any in stock and I would have to be put on the waiting list. So, I put my name on there and informed them that I wanted a 40 cm in black Togo with palladium hardware. And then I waited. And waited. And waited. Every once in a while, I would stop in and maybe buy something small, like a perfume or an agenda refill, just so I could check in and see if they had any in stock. I think it took around 18 months (and though sands of dollars later) before they finally said “we have a Birkin in the back.” They informed me that it was black chèvre with gold hardware, and it was the 35. I asked to look at it, and I decided to get it. I’m not one who matches the hardware of their bags to their jewelry, so I decided to just get that one. And I liked it a lot. I used it regularly until it was floppy and distressed.

    And then I sold it. I’m not a person who thinks the Birkin is gorgeous. I know it’s well-made and I know it’s an iconic piece of fashion history. That’s why I bought it. I now think that Birkins are slightly tacky and a little OTT. It’s like shoving your money in somebody’s face.

    So about a year after that, I got the Birkin bug again. I decided that I HAD to have the gold 40cm with gold hardware. I bought it from the store – with much less fanfare this time, since I had built up a wonderful relationship with my SA – and it was a great size. But, again, I sold it. I’m very understated in my style. Valextra, Bottega Veneta, Tod’s, etc. The Birkin was just too much. At that point, it seemed the Kardashians had discovered Birkins and started carrying them nonstop. I would continually get stopped and asked “oh my god. That’s the kim kardashian bag! Who makes it?” I had had enough. The over saturation of Chanel flaps never got to me. I own two classics and a reissue and I love them. I use them regularly. I just couldn’t take the Birkin anymore. So out the door it went.

    Finally, earlier this year, I decided to try once more with the original bag I wanted: 40cm, black, Togo, palladium. This time, I bought it online and had it authenticated. I loved the bag, but I sold it again due to becoming bored with it. It didn’t fascinate me like my Chanel Classic Flap or my Bottega bags. The over saturation just ruined it for me.

    Am I saying the Birkin is a bad bag? Of course not. Am I saying that it’s far more popular now than it was years ago? Yes, and you need to decide whether you’re okay with that. To me, the Birkin is a more expensive version of the Speedy. A tacky symbol of new money. I’m not into it.

    • eee

      good story…….

    • laura

      Very interesting story.

    • Lori

      Great story.

    • Smithy

      Ha! The Kim Kardashian bag reference would’ve done it for me. Anything associated with that klan is an instant turnoff for me. They are the epitome of excess and tactlessness. Good story.

      • Sara

        Couldn’t agree more. They have completely ruined Hermes for me and I’m scared stiff they will do the same with Givenchy. It hurts.

      • Jerri R

        They did the same with YSL Sac de Jour for me. They were doing it with Antigona not too long ago.

      • Sara

        NOOOO, not Sac de Jour? I’ve been looking at one to inspire me to get back to work.
        And yes Antigona is dead to me for that reason. My hopes are pinned on Pandora lol

      • emily

        They just own bag for Gods sake, there are a million bad and tacky people that own the same it’s not like they’re making it and making money off it. I don’t like them or their ways either but just because they owned a certain bag brand (because lets face it they probably own a bag from most well known designers) isn’t going to stop me from owning a bag. I’m sorry to say but that sounds kind of childish tbh.

      • Sara

        Childish? Maybe. But this is an old post. I’ve grown up since then lol

      • That’s actually while even though I still have both of mine, I almost NEVER carry them. The farthest I could get away from being associated with them in anyway, I’m all for it!!!

    • PJGambler

      Loved your post-especially two comments which I paraphrase:- a. That the bag isn’t particulary pretty, which I agree, and b. That it’s just a high priced Speedy!!
      Until I learned that they were sought after purses, I’d never give them a second look. I categorize them as ” heavy, old lady bags!” plus I can’t get Kris Jenner’s face out of mind when I see a black one.

      • Dylan Propst

        Hahaha! Especially the super rare white Himalayan Crocodile one with the brown sides. It looks like dirty snow to me but Kris looooves it.
        If the bags weren’t so expensive, the allure wouldn’t be there.

      • Amazona

        That Himalayan Croc reminds me of when our dog had poop stuck on his butt and he dragged it across our white livingroom carpet! :’D

      • Dylan Propst

        I have no problem spending money on bags. I love Bottega Veneta and I have a Chanel collection. But those bags are pretty understated in my opinion. It doesn’t scream “LOOK THIS PIECE OF LEATHER WAS $15,000 LOOK AT ME LOOOOK AT MEEEE!”

      • Nívia

        Yes, I agree, it’s heavy too much, and turns out to be very unpleasant to carry after a certain time…empty, but figure out it full of some of your staff…
        Not to imagine to carry it on a trip…

    • Lai

      Omg I really recognize myself!! I bought the Birkin too and after a month or two I was like ‘nahhh.. Don’t want it anymore..’ I just didn’t feel comfortable with it!

      • Dylan Propst

        It just wasn’t a standout bag that I found myself reaching for like I do with other bags.

    • DD

      “To me, the Birkin is a more expensive version of the Speedy. A tacky symbol of new money. ” I totally agree with you. When I first got my first struck with luck some time ago the first thing I did was getting a birkin. I felt like I need to tell the world that I’ve arrived. I refused to settle for anything mediocre at the time. Everything has to be over the top . Only the latest and rarest. To be honest I’ve never heard about birkin before, i never actually cared about brands until i can afford it. I remembered one day I googled everything expensive. That’s when i came across the leather money. I just had to get it. I couldn’t think of anything else at that point. From my reading online I learned that it’s “hard to get” . With the waiting list and everything. It only made me want it more . So off I go in my best designer dress and limited edition this and that to a local H store and naively ask for a birkin. I look like a runaway baboon . Not like Anna Dullo Russo crazy but more like the Kardashian on steroids. “I’m sorry but we don’t have a birkin at the back and we stop taking orders for a birkin” . I even tried to bribe the SA with a chunk of money and it didn’t work. I guess they don’t find me “worthy” of a birkin. As much as I want a birkin I wasn’t going to settle for a reseller or online plus I was afraid if it’s was a fake. The last thing I need is a fake bag . One day, a friend I know from a party introduced me to a collector. She’s the Queen bee in the local social circuit, at least in the new money category. Old money wouldn’t want to get caught dead near a new money in my place. So after I finally got to her good side she agreed to sell me one of her birkin. She was also sceptical whether or not I was worthy of the bag. It was an etoupe 40 . I carried it around almost everywhere I go. It wasn’t long until I bought my second and third and so on. I stopped caring where it’s from. To me a birkin is a birkin. I was making heads turned everywhere i go and that was exactly what I wanted. To announce the world that I’ve arrived. Fabulously nonetheless. Just like Dylan said ” it’s like shoving money to people’s face”. As much I hate to admit it I’m one of the tacky new money baboon that ruin class .

      • Dylan Propst

        No shame in new money! Everyone likes what they likes. Birkins just aren’t me:)

      • Rambo

        #annoying.

      • Oops

        You sound ridiculous. You keep saying how you don’t want something flashy but then you kept buying the same brand of handbag that’s known for its “in your face nature.” Sounds like to me you just have an uncontrollable urge to spend money. There’s nothing wrong with that…but I don’t know if I would share that with people. You sound flaky and scatter brained.

      • Dylan Propst

        I have enough of a disposable income to buy bags if I want them and not have to worry about the repercussions. If the fact that I’ve made a name for myself and earned the money I have makes me “flaky and scatter brained”, then so be it. I don’t need confirmation from some random person online. Thanks for your opinion though :)

      • Vicky

        Your writing entertain me. :) old money, new money, who care? I don’t think Hermes care. They just want your money. ;) And if your goal is to flaunt it, it’s a win-win. And it’s a plus if the style fits you.
        You don’t ruin class. The snooty attitude does. ;)

    • Trensetter718

      I bought a few pieces from different stores , every time I went to out my name on the list for Birkin . They said u not in the computer . I don’t know why it so hard , put my name on the list . And I purchase a like 5 bracelet , belt

      • Dylan Propst

        I always bought from the same store. Maybe you used a different card? I’m not sure.

      • Trensetter718

        Yes , some time I used cash

      • Dylan Propst

        That’s probably why. Don’t quote me on that, but I’m pretty sure they only keep track of credit cards.

      • Trensetter718

        Thanks

      • Sweet baby

        No my store has it listed by name. I’ve seen people pay with cash, check and cc

    • Alex575

      I like reading your story, Dylan. I only heard of the Birkin because of Sex & The City, LOL, but when I looked at them they style wasn’t for me (no matter how much or how little the cost).

    • Sofia

      The fact that the Birkin is a tacky symbol of new money and is associated with D-list reality stars are reasons why I have no desire to purchase one. Plus they’re not as elusive as they used to be. One pre-owned website I visit (who is a trusted reseller) has 8 birkins available, so if one wants to avoid the song and dance of going to Hermes store, they can easily purchase one online. That makes them a little less special IMO.

    • Dylan Propst

      I was one of the people published on Racked! How fun!

    • Leah Bourne

      Hi! Working on a story for the NY Post about the Birkin and wondering if there is any chance you would talk to me? My email is Leah@leahbourne.com.

    • Amazona

      Maybe men are more successful at scoring a Birkin because the SA’s know they won’t take any BS like us women do?
      “Buy scarves, shoes, perfumes, jewelry, and don’t for get to suck up to me, then MAYBE we’ll sell you a bag” is a
      “Oh okay, I’m a good girl and do as I’m told” VS “I don’t want to buy all that other crap, I just want to buy my beloved a present. Not gonna sell me a bag? Fine, keep your bags and I’ll make sure my wife never shops here again”.
      They play us for fools.

    • psny15

      Great post, couldn’t agree more!

    • Sally

      In my opinion now, Hermes are just breeding counterfeiting, the market is inundated with Birkin bags being resold, all at way above the shop price, most with little description but expecting a buyer to pay a premium when they are not 100% sure of what they will get for their money. Then you get the genuine person who can afford one, will appreciate one but cannot buy, it’s outrageous. I would prefer to pay double the price for a Chanel bag from Chanel because I can buy it straight away and they are loyal to their customers. I’m sick of all this Hermes rubbish, I wouldn’t buy one now, I feel like burning all my Hermes shite because of this snootiness and selling largely to the wrong clientele who just wish to resell at a profit. I have a fleet of cars, Ferrari, Aston martins, a Bugatti veron, Mercedes AMG x 3 but I can’t buy a Birkin – absolute nonsense! I have 7 mansions throughout the world but can’t buy a Birkin – I’m rich but not famous, I don’t like their crap awful smelling perfumes, their gaudy scarves etc etc so why would I buy them to build up a relationship with an uneducated Sales Assistant who earns less than I spend on my dogs per year (one of them) – it’s all insulting- they can keep and good luck to Hermes – on a more expensive scale it’s like Burberry a few years ago and who wants their stuff nowadays!

      • Fawcett Proust

        That’s a nice fantasy you concocted there.

  • Sweet baby

    I bought my dream bag thru hard work & perseverance. I remember seeing one of their bags in a magazine and immediately made a bee line to the store. I was turned away by some snooty SA.

    Undeterred, I tried revisiting the store a short time later. Bought myself a bag on vday and befriended a nice SA. I informed him of my dream bag style, specs I didn’t really care about.

    And a short time later, he delivered. At first I hesitated as H operates in a much higher price point than other brands. He wasnt happy I needed a few hours to think it over as he fought to get the bag for me. But I ended up taking it home.

    He unfortunately left the boutique soon after and I found myself w/o a SA again. I kept revisiting the boutique whenever I had time. Was given the run around by several of their staff. And luckily one day this lady agreed to be my SA.

    Thru her I made several small purchases here and there. You have to play the game to win so to speak. I wanted a specific color and leather combo that was ridiculously rare. When I think back, I still can’t believe it happened.

    Then one day I got the call. I called up my Cc company to make sure the charge would go thru..I got my dream bag. I’m eternally grateful to my SA for making the dreams of a middle class girl who didn’t come from money come true.

    And I never sold any of my bags. In fact I never sold anything I got from H.

    • Smithy

      You actually have to have someone “agree” to be your sales associate? Huh?

      • Sweet baby

        Yes. Just because they are cordial, smile, take your specs and might even give your card does not mean they will actually follow up and find the bag for you

      • Sparkletastic

        Exactly!

        Seriously. This is crazy. Give me a break! I am not going to woo an SA into “letting” me buy something. I can easily buy a diamond ring / necklace / hat pin for far more than the cost of a Hermes bag and get stellar customer service. Heck, we’ve all bought jewelry, cars and houses worth more and didn’t have to beg someone to sell them to us.

        The bags aren’t that special. If they weren’t 5 figures in price, no one would talk about them.

        Just stop the madness.

      • Charlie

        This trend so need to be stopped! Those sales were already snobby enough and now you have to beg them to sell you something? They wouldn’t even have a job if customers don’t buy their bags! Crazy

      • Sweet baby

        Everyone is entitled to their own personal opinion

  • dela

    From a family member. I know not the most original scenario.

    • Olivia J.

      Would be awesome to inherit a Birkin though. I don’t think I could deal with going through the store experience.

      • dela

        Yeah, I leave the bidding to my sisters and mom who are much more skilled and interested in acquiring bags. But, I am willing to put in the effort for a great RTW piece.

      • Olivia J.

        I eBay a lot and have gotten a lot of my favorite bags on the site. I think I’ll hold out and wait for that one special bid. Lol

  • Lidia

    I’ve simply bought one mine in the FSH store, asking for it to an old japonaise saler woman who was very gentle by the way, during a lasure trip in Europe, the other I ‘ve commanded , and wait for it a year longer , in Lisbon, during another trip. My sister did it too to get one for herself . We’ve actually went back to Lisbon to take them both. It was very funny…

    • Lidia

      So funny, that we’d made it twice. This time, commanding a BEAUTIFUL kelly, in garance red, size 35.. A genuine pleasure …

  • Aliza Zibkoff

    Chloroform.

    • Ok, you win, this made me LOL in the office.

  • Rosemary

    Long story short my mother had an SA and when she passed she handed the bag and the SA down to me.

    • Sparkletastic

      Passed down an SA. Please tell me you’re kidding.

      • Sweet baby

        Doesn’t sound like it

  • Rich K.

    I bought three for my mom using the American Express Platinum Concierge. I called and told them what I wanted and they put me on hold, called a few stores and within an hour each time I was in the store picking up the bag. I’ve been an AmEx holder and concierge user for a while so that helped. Either way, it’s a game to play to get the bags.

  • Yoshi1296

    I really do not understand why it is so hard to get a Birkin. It just seems like a turnoff to me. I guess my mom was one of the lucky ones since she got her first Birkin the first time she asked. AND SHE WAS WEARING OLD NAVY FLIP FLOPS AND TIGHTS ON THAT DAY. She bought 2 scarves, and a Kelly wallet. After paying for those she asked for a Birkin and my mom walked home with a BIG orange bag in her hands. It is a pretty bag, but I honestly don’t like it that much. It just seems like a pretentious bag to me. Very pretty, but pretentious. I’d take a Diorissimo or Lady Dior over a Birkin any day. I LOVE Dior bags.

    • Sweet baby

      She bought other merchandise prior to asking for the B. That’s key

      • Yoshi1296

        I agree but it still happened on the same day. A lot of people buy a bunch of stuff and still wait for the longest time.

      • Sweet baby

        There are threads advising to buy other stuff to increase ones chances of scoring a b, k or cdc. When the goal is obtained is anyone’s guess – ranging from the day of to weeks or months later.

      • Finance_Fan

        “When the goal is obtained is anyone’s guess” Honestly, you’d think women in 2015 would have better things to do than to try to “score” a handbag. The whole thing is pathetic.

      • Sweet baby

        It’s a matter of perspective. What may be deemed “pathetic” to you might not be to some and vice versa. For example, look how much is being dropped for shoes.

      • Sparkletastic

        But, why would anyone have to have a sequence for buying something. I’ll be diggity danged before a I assume a “posture” to buy anything.

      • Sweet baby

        I don’t make up the rules

      • Sparkletastic

        Yes, I know it’s Hermes corporate dictates or culture that makes these “rules”. Not any individual.

        I’m saying that the rules are ridiculous. I’m not going to beg, pledge, wheedle, coo or court someone into accepting my money for a good or service. We’ve all bought items far more expensive than the “regular” Hermes Birkin bags whether it be a trifle like jewelry or a functional purchase like a car. And, when we do, we expect cordial, pleasant customer SERVICE in those transactions. To think a sales associate (who works for a relatively low salary and may not be able to afford the very bag with which they are playing mind game chess) would give attitude to / play coy with a paying customer is insane.

        That all being said, I will take the comments of those who have run this gauntlet at their word. With this being the culture of Hermes, it had become an even more undesirable bag and little more than a joke about those willing to be victims of the game. There are other bags to love and – if one must have – other markers of success, style and wealth. But, this pathway is madness.

      • Jen0925

        Maybe, just maybe she really liked the 2 scarves and wallet. I could be wrong.

      • Average White Boy

        “I’m not going to beg, pledge, wheedle, coo or court someone into accepting my money for a good or service.” You talk like pussy is free. I certainly hope you’re not giving yours away?!

      • LS

        With all the respect that I have, i looks like you’ve never tried to have a real relationship with an SA. If you had you would know first of all that all employees from Hermes get a 40% discount on everything including Birkins and Kellys. Also they might not earn hundreds of thousands of dollars a month but I think you should know that their salaries are pretty descent when compared to the amount of work they provide.

      • Finance_Fan

        “when compared to the amount of work they provide.” That’s HER point. Their work SUCKS.

      • Jerri R

        Love your comment thank you!

  • I don’t have a “how I got my Birkin” story to share because I would never buy a Birkin. But I read Dylan’s story and I have to say this: The fact that I have to have a strategy, to befriend an Hermes SA (who is more likely NEVER going to be able to buy anything from the Hermes store he/she works in) and prove my self worthy to them, in order to be allowed to spend 15.000$ in their store, not only overwhelms me but find it utterly irrational and abhorrent!!! It’s so absurd… beyond words!

    • Sweet baby

      My SA has been able to afford a bag or two. I actually know several who have.

      • Almost everybody can afford a designer bag or two. But a Birkin?

      • Sweet baby

        I didn’t say they bought one recently. Hermes increases their prices about 8-10% annually. So you do the math.

      • They probably have special discounts too.. I know that LV SAs do. But still, a Birkin???!

      • Sweet baby

        They don’t get discounts on B or k

      • Dylan Propst

        Hermes doesn’t give anybody discounts. No exceptions. You can save to buy a Birkin. It might take a while, but it’s doable. You seem to be saying “oh, that’s so below me. I would never befriend a retail worker.” This is PurseBlog. Is $15,000 for a piece of leather with hardware and stitching ridiculous? Of course it is. But it’s money that I (the keyword here is I) worked for and earned. I don’t judge the way you spend your money, so I’d appreciate if you could show me the same courtesy. The point of this article is to discuss how you got a Birkin. You knew that coming into it.

      • Coco baby

        I agree with Dylan. Nothing is impossible in this world if you put your head into it & save your money. I have never thought of actually buying one till I did. I had saved every penny of my money because I wanted Birkin so bad and now I’m going for a different color.

      • Dylan I did not mean to judge anyone. I myself have spent thousands of euros on handbags (and I have been brutally judged by friends and family for it). I also did not mean that it is below me to befriend a retail worker. It probably came out wrong (English is not my native language).I just wanted to point out that it is absurd to do so in order to spend a lot of your well earned money. And this absurdity (at least for me) goes way beyond the point of spending 15K$ for a piece of leather. I would gladly spend twice as that because I’m a crazy handbag lover. But when I go to make my purchase I want it to be stress free!!!
        At Chanel they have never given me a hard time! Even years ago when I went in for the fisrt time and bought my first handbag. They have always been kind and helpful and, yes, throughout the years we have built a nice relationship. But this has nothing to do with which items will be available to me whenever I want to buy something. If they have it they will give it to me. If not they will try to find it but that’s that. I believe they do that for everyone because it’s their job and not because customers have proven worthy of their services. That’s all I wanted to say. (Sorry if I sounded offensive in anyway).

      • Dylan Propst

        I’ve never found Hermès stressful. That’s just how it works. Is it kind of insane? Obviously. But I personally love the Hermès brand as a whole – not just the Birkin – so the purchases I had made were things I would’ve purchased anyway.

    • Nan

      I remember being a little girl who felt intimidated by sales associates and my mother telling me the same thing – the very fact they work there means they can’t afford to shop there. I’ve never been intimidated since, nor would I put myself in that position. There are so many beautiful things I could spend my $15,000 on.

      • jen0925

        Being intimidated by a sales person screams insecurity. Try being more assertive and you won’t feel intimidated by anyone.

      • Lori

        I don’t think that “being intimidated by a sales person screams insecurity”. I think the whole process of shopping at Hermes can be overwhelming when you don’t have a lot of experience with it. I agree that you need to be assertive and they hop-to for you, but even after all these years and lots of bags from the shops on Rodeo in BH, those sales people can still send a chill down my spine at times.

      • Sparkletastic

        She said she felt intimidated as a child.

    • I wouldn’t underestimate how much a hardworking SA in one of those boutiques can make, personally. Retail is commonly thought of as low-wage and blue-collar, but at that price level, it’s a good living.

      • I merely wanted to point out the absurdity of the whole thing and I may sounded a little nasty as far as the SAs are concerned, I admit. But as much as a good living an SA can make working for a luxury brand, they definitely are not as wealthy as the men and women who are their customers. Especially Hermes’.
        In the country I live, an SA in Louis Vuitton, Chanel or Prada makes considerably more than the average retail personel, but it is still a lot less than what the average well educated corporate employee makes (which is still considered not a lot, but ok)! And I know this for a fact due to the nature of my job (I work for my country’s IRS).

      • Pamela

        I think people just get annoyed when SA judge buyers. Some of the richest people I know do not even own “luxe brands”. They own yachts and dont give a shit about materials. they will walk into a store and not “look” the part but then you see their black card.. and then salespeople start to suck up to them. so for a SA To judge you when you buy something and assume you can/cant afford something is annoying. I stopped shopping at Saks and Bergdorfs. Now I walk to Bloomies and buy my nice things in my lululemon pants and dont give a crap!

      • jen0925

        I think it’s because they have experience in that field and often get people that come in just to look and they won’t buy. If you get 100 of those people per day, you gain experience at knowing who will or will no make a purchase.

      • Sparkletastic

        Uh…no. I’ve had plenty of SA’s ignore me when I walk into a store because I’m not going to get dressed up to shop and / or I don’t fit their profile. They are there to provide service. Being rude, ignoring a ciustomer, etc. is unacceptable in every case.

    • Sam

      I’m out at having to “buy some scarves”.
      I may never own a Birkin. ????

  • Y Ajayi

    Patience it seems, is key (majority of the time). I don’t have the patience so I do not see a Birkin in my future and I am not sad about it.

    • Sweet baby

      Patience and luck. For those who have deep pockets and don’t want to wait, there is always the reseller option

  • Sharon Macklin

    These stories are all so outrageous – at least, they are to me. To prove oneself “worthy” of being able to purchase a Birkin? I have to get a sales associate to “agree” to be your SA?
    Never.

    • Aurore de La Gorce

      I share your feelings.

    • Rio

      It’s ridiculous. All these comments about how hard it is to buy an Hermes bag and that you have to build a good relationship with an SA and buy bunch of stuff first with the hope eventually being offered one or able to purchase one just blows my mind. It is the exclusivity that makes it so damn expensive i get it, that’s their game. But let me tell you this, my aunt was a housekeeper to a very wealthy family in London (always included in the forbes rich list every year).
      Over the years whenever they do a clear out of their closet, they would give my aunt loads of designer clothes some even had tags on them unused! gowns that costs thousands of £ AND guess what? Birkin bags.. yes bags, not one but 3 Birkins she acquired from them over the years along with other designer bags. They are old used bags but hey, would you actually know that someone who carries an authentic Birkin bought their bag brand new from the store when eventually your bag is going to get old anyway so whatever the state of the bag is when you acquired it, a Birkin is a Birkin right? Haha! I just find it ridiculous that a lot of women do everything to get their hands on Hermes bags when other people are just given it. I actually borrowed one from her before and used it for few hours and didn’t like it because it’s so damn heavy it hurt my arm!

  • Amazona

    No matter how rich I was (I’m not), no matter how much I wanted a Birkin (I don’t), I’d never stoop to the level of begging for some snooty SA to allow me to purchase a bag. Let alone spend ridiculous amounts of money on other stuff so that I might one day, if I’m lucky and “my SA” had their pants on the right way, be offered a chance to purchase a bag in a size or color I might not even want. What is wrong with this world?!

    • n.s.

      Exactly!! Kissing ass “AINT” cute! Its makes you feel lower than dirt IMO! And for a handbag?? FOR YEARS before you get one?!?, get real ladies. Ass kissing is not on my to do list and never will be. Those SA’s don’t even make enough to buy a Birkin so how are they gonna DEEM who’s worthy?. That’s total B.S.

      • BabyDietrich

        (I know it’s an old comment, but…)

        Hermes employees actually make pretty good money- one of very few brands that pay salary as well as commission, not to mention they also get employee discount! I have a friend who works as a SA at NYC Hermes, and she has tons of Hermes stuff. She rakes in commissions on top of 60k salary (I asked out of curiosity.) She has a lot of clients who spend tens of thousands every month. A lot of employees work there *because of* the products! I don’t disagree with your general point, but Hermes employees actually make good money for a retail worker & some of them could certainly afford a Birkin, esp w/ deep employee discount. Oh and they have really good benefits too. My friend *loves* her job.

      • psny15

        you are right, Hermes has the worst customer service – the people who work there just seem desperate to me

  • Nila

    This whole tail about Birkins doesn’t exist. I got in Europe and South America including in croc and ostrich and It was my first time shopping at a Hermes store. I don’t know why they still make such a big deal about this subject. I guess
    They don’t have any instereting subject to write about it..

    • Sweet baby

      Then you’Re an exception. If the tale was fake and these bags were so easy to come by, the resellers would be useless and no one would bother making a pilgrimage to Paris to obtain the bags, much less open countless blogs/threads/books giving advice on how to score the elusive bag.

  • betsylovespink

    I saw a picture of an Hermes Kelly in a magazine back in the early 90’s. I had never even heard of Hermes, but I thought it was the most beautiful bag I had ever seen. As a new college grad I absolutely couldn’t afford it though. I didn’t step foot in an Hermes boutique until around 15 years later when I bought my first Hermes item, a bracelet, and quickly became obsessed with their colorful bangles and leather bracelets. I originally swore that I would never buy one of their bags due to the high price tag, but I was completely surprised when my SA offered me the chance to place a special order for a bag and I couldn’t pass up the opportunity. I was able to choose everything on my Birkin – size, exterior and interior leather color, hardware color and stitching – I waited about 9 months and finally got to enjoy my gorgeous Hermes bag.

    I was offered another SO and this time chose the Kelly. Unfortunately after another long wait, I was one of the unlucky ones who received a defective, stinky bag. My boutique handled the problem quickly and in the end I was allowed to place another SO and received a perfect Kelly a year later.

  • Janine Berk

    Privé Porter, the first two times and we just bought two in their Aspen pop-up shop. They charge over retail but they are always brand new and I don’t like how Hermes makes me buy other stuff I don’t want.

    • Yes. I don’t have a birkin, but I imagine if I ever was to buy one, I wouldn’t play the in-store games and would go straight to prive Porter.

  • Jane Doe

    I skipped all the planning, strategy, groveling, stalking, begging and financial planning and bought a beautiful Birkin replica from our Chinese friends. I’m not talking about one bought off the sidewalk in Chinatown but rather through underground websites where the Chinese, masters of imitation, craft exquisite bags for about $500 that no one will know is fake. I have a friend who has a real Birkin and we put them side by side and there was absolutely no difference. Who’s smarter now?? Tee hee….

    • Janine Berk

      I think hubby would rather me spend the big bucks then get arrested goofing with fakes

    • Alisax

      A few who work for Hermes in France got sued because they were found working for Chinese factories that make “imitations.” If it is the same people making the bag, and the quality of leather/exotics is the same, is it really considered fake? I don’t carry fakes but I just think the markup is ridiculous.

    • Sweet baby

      Yea I’ve seen those and can tell you which is fake. But if you’re happy, good on you

    • BabyDietrich

      Gross. Have fun flaunting your illegal merchandise!

  • Hope Dworaczyk

    I buy for myself from Privé Porter, within a few days they can find me a
    Bubblegum pink or Mimosa yellow alligator Birkin. These are bags I’d
    have to search the Hermes boutiques months for, and may never find
    without doing a special order. That special order thet then try to get me to buy $8,000 in table top. In the store you are only offered what
    they want to offer, but can find any color.”

    • Lisa Hochstein

      Hehehe, Hope. She (Prive Porter) is a good friend and gets me stuff, too. They are bringing like $2MM of bags to their Pop-Up Shop Aspen. I hope Lenny let’s me go see it all. Don’t you live in Vail???

  • Liza

    I bought mine at Lecrin Raffles Hotel Singapore. There is another Lecrin in Tokyo too. No waiting list. Check it out.
    http://www.lecrin.com.sg

  • I believe it’s being in the right place at the right time. I don’t have the patience nor inclination to buy my way (at the boutique for things I don’t want) to a Birkin. I would come in once in a while to check out scarves and what not, usually walking out empty-handed. One day lightning struck and I was offered an etain Birkin 35 the first time I even met that boutique’s SA (also my first time to that boutique). It all boils down to dumb luck imo. I’ve done the whole pilgrimage thing in Paris/FSH and gotten myself on some managers’ lists here and there, but so far all it took was a nice chat with an SA who happened to offer me a bag that happened to have been in their stock delivery that day. And no, I did not keep that bag since it was absolutely the wrong size for me. I just wanted the experience of actually coming home with the once elusive bag! Now the only Birkin in my closet actually came from a friend who was too self-conscious to carry it around her family :). Luckily I am shameless when it comes to bags. LOL.

  • Dian Savitrie

    My story started when I purchased a hapi bracelet. I love hapi bracelets and I am trying to collect one key color in every season. I actually love the bracelets more than the bag. I got my bracelets from different stores, but I was lucky and got the bag in Paris.
    So one day I came to Hermes rue du faubourg in Paris to see what new colors they have for hapi bracelet. I picked up a bambou (bright green) bracelet and a cashmere scarf (actually it’s for my mom). I didn’t expect to get a bag that day. The SA who was with me was so nice, it was the first time I met him, we talked a lot about the new season colors and how I love them. Before we go to the till, I told him it will be lovely to have a matching bag with my bracelet. He told me to wait and see if he got something. He checked his computer and disappeared. A few minutes later he came back with an orange box (super excited the moment I saw it!!) and asked me to go upstairs. It was quiet there. He opened the box and there it was, birkin 35 in bambou with paladium hardware. I forgot if it’s togo or epsom. The bracelet I bought was in gold hardware though. I tried it on and although it’s a bit big for me i decided to get it (and cracked my credit card). I love it and have used for less than 5 times (I love my Balenciaga more) but now my mom wear it more often. Anything to make my mom happy :)

  • Kathy Hull LeTourneau

    Used to think I wanted one. Not anymore. They are beautiful, but just a purse and there are other options outs there. For all those commenting on SA’s. Having been one, I can tell you that I could afford to buy what I wanted and hated being asked if my Rolex was real. A good SA’s does the job, listens to the customer and makes sure they leave happy with what ever they purchase or even if they don’t purchase. Never judge a customer by how they dress, you could be making a huge mistake.

    • Olivia J.

      Agree. Used to be a SA at a high end store. You just treat everyone one the same and give them good service, and make sure they have a pleasant shopping experience. A guest is going to come back because of the experience they had. Not because you helped them because they have the latest runway on

    • Lisa Hochstein

      The premium at companies like Prive Porter are worth it, the prices increase 8% a year I read somewhere.

    • Lisa

      That’s great advice for all SAs. When I bought my first car, at age 21 many years ago, I walked into the dealership in jeans looking just like the former student I was. I asked for a test drive since they had exactly the car I wanted (a new Ford Mustang) and got the once-over before the salesman agreed. Drove it back to the dealership, said “I’ll take it” and paid for it in full on the spot. I hope that salesman was nicer to the next young person who came in, and learned a lesson about judging a customer by his or her outfit!!

    • Anonisanonymous

      This so much! I was left in almost tears the one time I walked into Saks at Galleria in Houston to get a pair of Loubies. I’m not the one to get “dressed up” to go shopping. I have money. I can purchase whatever I want with my money. What I’m wearing should have no impact on that. I had scrubs on the day I went in and was treated like a thief. I was followed everywhere and when I asked for a pair in my size, I was pretty much ignored while the one SA there helped the flashy dressed couple. Took my business to Neiman Marcus, instead and was happy to spend my grand there. Since then, I try to shop online as much as possible because literally every major retailer has free returns so I’m able to order multiple sizes and colors and ship back whatever I don’t want with 0 judgment and in my PJs! Lol.

      • Drew Brant

        This is so sad to hear. As someone who worked as a SA at a high end department store I loved creating relationships with customers and having the ability to communicate with them about new products in the store. Also who ever sized you up for wearing scrubs is probably a complete moron. Most of my top spenders were the most modestly dressed.

      • Ballets&Bows

        The same thing happened to my husband in a Chanel store. He had just gotten back from a work trip and decided to buy me a bag… Heaven forbid, he was in sweats. The SA gave him no attention – so he went next door and bought a Balenciaga, went back to the Chanel store and said “See? I have money, and I could have spent it with you.” You never know who has money and who doesn’t, treat everyone like a millionaire.

      • Anonisanonymous

        I should mention I had scrubs on because I am a physician. Mostly I am in professional clothes but this was that rare one day when I didn’t have any follow-ups and was just assisting.

      • Crystal

        I’m certain the SA just laughed at the Pretty Woman moment.

  • Unapologetic

    It’s a very basic leather tote? It would be a great doctor’s bag if this were 1870 but otherwise it’s a hyped up tote. If I bought one and then looked in the mirror I know I would see a sucker looking back at me.

  • Birkinbaby

    I bought my Birkins from a fabulous SA. She did tell me when I initially asked how to purchase one that you need to be “deserving”. If I wasnt so interested in getting one I would have been turned off. I was also able to customize a Birkin which was a cool experience.

  • Alexis

    I went in to FSH when I was in Paris on a business trip. I went up to the counter and asked very politely. The lovely SA fell over himself to put my name down and I also got a kelly for my mum at the same time. That was in 2010. I think manners have a great deal to do with it. I’ve since bought a BJ Birkin from a reseller. It was in impeccable condition and was v reasonably priced. I think sometimes if the reseller is a bricks-and-mortar affair you can get more genuine service from the vendor. I’m a very happy little lamb with my two Birkins. I also snagged a Lindy 34 in black clemency off the website this year :)

  • Joyll

    I actually own two. An orange clemence 35 with palladium & a black Togo 40cm with palladium. How did I get them? By having dated a former NFL player & one of his teammates cheated on the side chick & she got pissed & sold off all her birkins & most of her Chanel collection for literally pennies on the dollar. (The black Togo) Then a few years later dating a music producer & meeting one of his rappers & his wife at a party & then that same night, the wife finding out that he had a kitty in every city, so she divorced him & sold nearly all of her most expensive bags again at pennies on the dollar (my luck I tell you!) as a way to get back at him after his attornies cheated her out of several million in the settlement. Can I afford to purchase Birkins at retail & needless markup?!?! YES I CAN. But I absolutely refuse to do so. That’s stupid & that money can go elsewhere towards my business ventures & college funds for my godchildren. Plus I have NO time to be trying to kick any arse to get put on a waiting list & schmooze with a SA. I have work to do, much more money to make!!!

    • Sweet baby

      Gurl, sage them bags asap.

      • Joyll

        Hahaha no worries I did right after we had gone to Hermès & had them authenticated & closed the sales lol! My ‘rents didn’t raise a fool lol!!!!

      • Sweet baby

        Awesome! Yea they’re definite scores but when I read how you got them, I was like oh gurl, they got some bad juju. Gotta “clean” them.

      • Joyll

        Lol believe me I was waving that sage from side to side for days after I acquired them!!!! Side….to…SIIIIIIDE!!!! LMBO!!!

      • Sweet baby

        Omfg!! I cannot stop chuckling. Thank you SO much for that. Yo mama definitely didn’t raise no fool! Enjoy your gems. You totally deserve it!

  • Kathyjazz

    I own 2 Birkins, both preowned. I bought a 25 blue jean togo/palladium HW in impeccable condition from a highly respected online seller. It turns out that the small size makes it more of an occasion bag for me. Later I bought a 30 potiron chèvre/gold HW (a gorgeous combo IMO) in great condition for a steal from a consignment shop. I had to vacuum pet hair out of it though(!?) After some leather conditioner it looked amazing! I never considered buying one new; I’ve enjoyed studying the plentiful preowned options that are around, as well as the hunt. If I get a ding on one of the bags, I don’t freak out. I just enjoy them like my other bags.

    • Sweet baby

      The preown is actually better/well made vs the stuff they’re churning out now (eg skunk leather, thinner leather, handles wearing out after 6 months of sitting in a closet… barely touched! ) You see where I’m going with this.

      • Kathyjazz

        Yes you make a good point! It’s kind of cool carrying a bag that carries a history with it too…

  • Lori

    I wanted to mention a little “trick” i learned in Las Vegas from a SA at Valentino last week. He said they all treat customers better in LV because they literally can’t tell who has money or not and quite a few of the people who shop at those stores have never been to one before. He said if they were as snooty as other locations they would literally lose business. After visiting a few shops, including Hermes, I think he was telling me the truth as i found all the SA’s at all the stores to come right up and ask me if I needed help. And I was carrying a very non-designer bag! Long story short, if you want to buy a Birkin, try one of the (3, I think) LV stores.

    • Dylan Propst

      I was so confused because I thought LV stood for Louis Vuitton and I was like “how will buying from Louis get you a Birkin?!”

      • K_Elizabeth

        Haha! I thought this too until I read your comment!!

    • Janine Berk

      They will absolutely sell you a bag if you spend around $5000-8000 in other stuff like blankets or poker chips

      • julie

        Absolutely true. That is all it takes. Spend money on things that are not Birkins or Kellys, and you’ve shown them you are an Hermes customer. Such a racket. But if you like the stuff, great! Also, I understand that it helps the house reward their true customers with the most coveted bags, rather than giving them to someone who will turn around and re-sell it.

      • Janine Berk

        also SA are NOT compensated for leather bag sales

  • FCappy

    I loved the Brand for years before I really heard about the Birkin. I adore the scarves and have for almost 25 years. I was with a friend of mine when she was visiting NYC and was the first customer at the Madison Ave store and she bought the Birkin. It was luck of the draw and cost $6600 at the time. I looked at it but wasn’t in love ,yet. Then a store opened locally in Short Hills and the SA casually introduced me to the Store Manager. She saw I came in often, knew a lot about the Brand which I loved and bought what I could. She asked if I could have any color what would I want and I told her. She put me at the top of the list right there and then. I started crying having heard all the horror stories. Three months later…

    The bag came in two weeks before my niece’s wedding and we had already invested a great deal in the wedding. When we (my husband and I) finally saw ‘her’ I asked for a day to think and was told politely, if you don’t get the bag now then you’ll wait another 2 yrs to qualify. I said before we spend $11k ( the money finally hit me) I said , I need 24 hours.

    So 24 hrs and a sleepless night later we went to the store. It was then I decided no I couldn’t do it and when I turned to find my SA to give her my final decision, I was handed the bag. My husband decided the bag was timeless, made by hand, could be resold and knew it would make ME happy. I wasn’t getting it to impress anyone so he took the decision out of my hands. I use her often as well as a gorgeous Kelly I now own and adore plus other Hermes and Dior Bags. Both houses use the best leathers and are hand made. My Fav Dior are the Be Dior Bags which are much like the versatility I find in my Red Kelly. That said, Birkin is my first love and a gift of craftsmanship from my husband. Buy what you love and you will be happy. Buy for someone else and well I don’t have to explain what that means, do I?

    If you love the Hermes Brand and all associated with the label then working with one SA and visiting the shop will help you along the Birkin road if that is what you want. I don’t regret one moment of my journey and am now waiting for bag no 2 since I want a very specific color. It’s true love and true love lasts a lifetime!!!

    • Sweet baby

      Great story! You have a fantastic husband!

  • I bought my Birkin (35cm box leather & vibrato) from a reseller and I’d do it that way again. I/we (I say ‘we’ because I usually ask my husband to go into H for me…. I can’t handle a lot of BS.) waited almost a *year* for an adjustable canvas strap for my Kelly bag (also purchased from reseller.) Madness!! I don’t have any interest in tap-dancing and jumping through firey hoops for handbags. I do have H scarves, bracelets, fragrances etc but I only buy the things I really want…not random items in an attempt to kiss-up.

    Frankly, at this point, between the skunk leather bag news and the Kardashians(sp?) and others, I’m not as excited about the Birkin anymore. I have found the Kelly to be far more practical and convenient. I thought about consigning the B but with the price and percentage split proposed, I decided I was much better off saving it to use after the hype dies (I’ll be totally grey-haired by then, I’m sure)…or for my daughter(but she’s only 7 yrs. old LOL.)

    • Sweet baby

      I knew a woman who inherited 2 B’s from her mom. She was able to sell them at a good price point to pay off some medical bills. So baring no emergencies, saving them for your daughter may not be a bad thing.

      • G-d forbid it ever comes to that for DD but it’s great to hear.(Hopefully B. Arnault doesn’t get his claws into H in the interim.) At the time, I wanted to sell the B to possibly buy a green or brown Kelly but it was far too much of a hit/lo$$(maybe I tried the wrong company LOL), so it’s definitely better, IMO, to just save for another.

        I think the Veau Box and vibrato B is a wonderful ‘extra’ art piece for the collectors but not practical for a mom like me. I should’ve gone w/something like maybe Togo or Fjord but it was just so beautiful(and still is esp. since it just sits around most of the time! hahah… I don’t always use common sense. Thankfully my husband is patient.) There’s still the issue of the Bs strapless-ness too. This is fine when out w/ other adults or the oldest children but otherwise, it’s annoying.

        I love my Kelly(40cm Graphite color) and the only thing I’d probably change about it is the Clemence leather… It is a bit heavy so I’ll only put in essentials. My current casual go-to, carry-the-kitchen-sink bags are my cheapie BedStu Hawkeye and Oryany Daria from Ebay. lolz

  • JC

    I have 3 birkin. 2 with size 30, 1 size 35. I follow the old route to get those. I have good relationship with my SA . YES, I spend ton of money at Hermes. However I don’t regret, because the style is Classic. You can’t not compare with any other brand. I have no plan to sell them. I enjoy them before and I will enjoy them forever….

  • Zairna

    I purchased my bag from auction house Christies- figured they sell hundreds of millions in art they should be trustworthy to buy a birkin from. The thing about it, is I’d haven’t even attempted to buy from a store, the idea of having to spend thousands to spend thousands seemed ludacris. The only reason I purchased it was because I have a huge collection of bags, about 55 nearly 20 are Chanel, and just for the sheer history and love of handbags I thought it belonged in my collection. I love well made items and that’s what drew me to the bag. I took the Birkin to Beverly Hills H to be cleaned up and they treated me coldly and disgruntled I purchased it second hand. I don’t really love much of there other items so a trustworthy second reseller is the only way for me plus the idea of dealing with these SA for months before I got the chance is not appealing. the birkin is the black and gold 35. I Don’t know how much I will wear it, but it does make me feel like my collection is complete. ( I truly dislike the Kardashian clan but if I allow them to ruin a Birkin for me, most of the designers I love would be out the door)

    • Sweet baby

      That’s messed up they looked down on you for having a second hand B

    • Sofia

      It’s absolutely ridiculous that Hermes makes purchasing the Birkin in-store so difficult, yet they look down on someone who chooses to purchase a secondhand one.

  • Paola

    My first Hermes bag was a Birkin. I went to the store, ordered it, waited for eleven months and there it was! The wallet only took four months to be delivered. Easy peasy, lemon squizy! After a few years and four bags, all the Hermes SA’s have been as nice and kind as always. I buy my perfumes, scarves, jewelery and notebooks at Hermes and the SA’s are kind, funny and take all the time that is needed.

  • JS

    Wow, so many negative bitter comments. I like to travel to France. My favorite thing to do is people watch. The women have such great style. I have been going to France several times per year for about 10 years. I noticed women carrying birkins years ago, and I thought they were beautiful bags. The women carry them very casually, not in a showy way. You get the feeling that this is their signature bag that will last a lifetime. I like the ones with a bit of a patina especially. It is all about casual elegance and classic style. I had no idea how much they cost, how hard they were to acquire or that they were a status symbol. I finally went into the store maybe 5 years ago and was surprised how much they cost, but I still liked them and in the past few years when I could afford it I bought one. I established a relationship with a local SA and I only purchased things that I truly wanted, which at Hermes is just about everything. Their products are amazing. When she had one that fit my wish list she called, maybe about 6 months after I first met her. My SA is very helpful in picking out items so I am very loyal to her. Not because I have to, but because it is nice to have someone who you like and trust to help you. Since then I have also purchased a second bag at FSH in Paris, which was a really fun and special experience. I wish all of the celebrities and status symbol chasers would move on to something else and leave these classically elegant, beautiful pieces of artistry to the rest of us.

    • K_Elizabeth

      Totally agree with this comment! Granted this is a much lower price point, but I fell in love with the Mulberry Bayswater bag when I saw chic women carrying patinated bags while on vacation in London, so a few days into the trip I bought one myself! It’s one of my most-used bags and when I get compliments on it here in the US, I love telling the story of my trip to London.

      • Anonisanonymous

        Mulberry is so underrated! They make some AMAZING bags! I like preppy styles but I bought a wallet for my BF from Harrod’s and he loves it!

    • ellavanw

      My experience was similar. I got to know an SA in my local boutique because I truly love the scarves and bracelets and tried to work with her consistently because I thought she had good taste; when I decided to buy a Birkin I asked her to help me and she did; they happened to have one that day in the color and size I wanted, and I bought it. Very simple story.

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  • Libby McCarten Andrews

    I’ve bought two 35 cm Birkins in the last 9 months directly from Hermes. The second one was a gorgeous turquoise ghillies birkin! My sales associate just called me when they came in. It was quite simple.

  • Tiffany

    I was lucky enough to be in the right place at the right time – it was shortly after the 2008 market crash so sales must’ve been relatively slow…I went in to purchase a scarf, as a present for my mom (which she later returned!). After selecting the scarf I asked to look at the book of leathers/colors, out of curiosity. Surprisingly the SA asked if I’d like to put in an order for a Birkin. At the time I was shocked to be offered one and was looking at the book more as “research/window shopping” so I politely declined but said I would call if I changed my mind.
    After a month of deliberating I decided to purchase one – made an appointment in-store, tried a few different colors on, and decided on the Bleu de Prusse. While the SA tried to encourage me to also purchase a belt and other accessories I politely declined and just purchased the Birkin.
    I don’t agree with the “purchasing process” and would’ve felt taken advantage of purchasing accessories or goods I didn’t need/want just to put a smile on the SA’s face.
    I think if the economic situation was different there’s no way I could’ve purchased it the way I did, but I’m glad I stuck to my guns and didn’t get pressured into spending extra $$$. It doesn’t put me on any Hermes VIP lists, but that’s a-ok with me.

    • BB

      You dropped a lot of money on a Birkin. Are you really offended that the SA was trying to up sell you with accessories? *rolls eyes* on a scale of logical to silly…you’re definitely silly. Smh.

      • Tiffany

        BB, I wasn’t offended – selling merchandise is their job. I just don’t believe in purchasing something unless I actually want it – whether it’s from Hermes or H&M.

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  • KO0926

    I do not find the Birkin particularly attractive. I have a walk in handbag closet full of Prada’s, a couple Burberry’s, Gucci’s, Chloe’s, Fendi’s, Balenciaga’s, Tory Burch, Marc Jacobs among a few others….. when I look at my Prada collection, I would rather have four or five Prada’s than one Birkin….. I’m not a big Louis Vuitton or Chanel fan either… for me it is about how the leather feels (love buttery leather) and the shape of the bag. I’m not one to buy a bag because everyone else does… I remember when I was in college and I bought a Dooney and Burke (I’m aging myself here) and a girl asked me why I bought that bag, when EVERYONE had a Coach…. I said exactly…. This was almost 30 years ago. My purse was $350.00, the strap was $40.00 (yes, it was sold seperately) and I can’t remember what the matching wallet was, over $150.00 and I remember being teased that if anyone stole my purse it would be a felony because it was over $500.00…. how funny is that when a good wallet sets you back about $600! I imagine I have spent about 170 K on handbags over my lifetime…. and I have to say if you are a handbag girl… you are a handbag girl and you don’t care what anyone else is carrying… if you are more concerned with what everyone else thinks… you are carrying a “label” and it’s not about the bag….

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  • hebalicious

    I bought a Birkin, and sold it in less than a year. I just got bored of it. The same with a black Kelly, I bought it and sold it in like 6 months… Just bored of them and too many fakes around too.

  • joy_k

    I went into Hermes in Beverly Hills 5 years ago. I had called before and was told that I should check everyday to see if they had any on the shelf. I didn’t have the time to call everyday…and by the time I would have been able to get there, it would have probably already been sold. So, this time, I walked into the store and they had two on the shelf. I ended up buying a 35 cm that I wore for a few years and then sold it. :)

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  • Keren

    I don’t have a Birkin. For now, it does not appeal to me. I have a Kelly & think it’s a beautiful bag . I also have some “under the radar” Hermes leathers that don’t scream $$$.
    I found the associates at the Hermes boutique near me friendly. Definitely not judgemental. My more expensive purchases have not been through them. Guess it depends on where you go & who you get.
    I have a large collection of Chanel.
    Lately the line seems OTT and pricey for what it is.
    Might be a phase I’m going through.
    I’ll stay with the classics when I’m in the mood to wear Chanel.
    Ultimately it’s a matter of what one likes.
    Handbags, like other things reflect a style & image of the person

  • Nadine

    Reading the majority of success stories it’s becoming clear to me exactly why Hermes manages to stay on top in the luxury world in terms of sales and profits. The entire “exclusivity” and SA “wooing” is to ensure their other products are also bought. This will never change even if there was an unlimited supply of birkins in the world. I’m beginning to feel there was some truth to the idea that the waiting list doesn’t actually NEED to exist i.e. that it is all created with an image of Hermes in mind and is completely unrelated to bag supply. It is, perversely, a SALES tactic, the designer equivalent of a poker bluff.

    I agree that it’s ridiculous and will most likely never get my hands on one despite owning many designer bags already because as a working professional with children, I simply cannot find the time to grovel and bargain to pay for something other than a house unfortunately.

  • kc039

    I got my first bag, in 35cm, about 2 weeks after I was put on the list. I got lucky on that because one day I called my SA and bang! he had just gotten one in. However, I was not the first one he called because I had only made 3 purchases so far in the store, and those were like small items (bracelet/scarf/wallet). He had already called 3 people before me, but I was able to snap it ~ first come first serve! haha! I initially wanted a 30cm, but I figured, why not! About a little over a month later, he called me again and said he has a 30cm. Yes, I did end up with another one and I definitely love the 30cm size.

    In general, I think I just got really lucky!

  • Janine Berk

    Kris Jenner got two brand new ones in Aspen without having to deal with SA hassles: https://instagram.com/p/51-T60m-IY/?taken-by=krisjenner

  • fashion fob

    Most of my bags were offered from the SA since my family is VIP but when I got mine from the Paris store without the status, I finally realized how hard it was! My friends nagged me for the story so I decided to write a post about it – http://www.fashionfob.com/. Hope this information is useful to everyone and show us pictures of your bags!!!

  • Hermes pour moi

    I had bought 2 shawls and a bracelet at the Hermes boutique and on a whim I called the SA who had helped me. I left a voicemail that I was interested in getting a Birkin. He called me back and said, What size and color? As the expression goes, you could have knocked me over with a feather. So I told him what I wanted and he said I’ll call you back in 10 minutes. He did, and I went to the store a few days later and left with my Birkin. Easy Peasy!

  • Teddee13

    I don’t get all the hate. I think it’s a generally beautiful bag. Yes, some do look tasteless or over the top and just downright ugly. But the majority I’ve seen have wowed me. The bag is unnecessarily expensive, but that’s part of the reason it’s been appreciating in value. Not everyone can afford to have one. And many who can afford them can’t get them. It’s a rather genius marketing ploy and as Fortune pointed out, they aren’t just handbags any more, they’re investment tools. As frivolous (but mainly successful) investments go, they’re the equivalent of a classic car or Air Jordan collection. But unlike Air Jordans, wearing it won’t decrease it’s over time appreciation value.

    I think Hermes is a savvy enough company to read the writing on the wall. The more exclusive they keep the bag, the more demand will grow. I think if they see too many of the bags being resold online, they are going to be inclined to make even fewer of them. May even implement a buy back campaign. One of the big auction houses had a collection they’d put up either this or last year. Most got sold off within the first day.

    • Sparky

      People collect sneakers….????

  • Babs411

    Why are these comments so old if the article date is just yesterday? This is weak.

  • buffmom33

    I agree with you all- I feel the Birkin is a little too much @ times. I do love LV Mono in small SLG’s but not handbags for that same reason. Admittedly though oneday I would love to have a Kelly in 32 CM!! :)

  • Scottsdale Kim

    I purchased my Birkin from a boutique earlier this year after spending several thousand dollars at Hermes over the last few years. I appreciate the history and the workmanship of this bag and hope to enjoy it for many years to come.

    The answer to why you need to develop a history with a SA seems simple. the bag takes 48 or so hours to produce from what I’ve heard and they want to sell them to people that actually have an interest in the brand, not just opportunists looking to capitalize on the limited availability by buying them to turn around and sell for a profit online.

    My biggest complaint about the brand is that they seem to sell large quantities of bags to celebrities (one completely overrated family in particular) and that has hurt the brand as shown in many of the comments.

    As far as my purchase story, I built a relationship at a particular boutique but did not choose wisely as this boutique has a very large wealthy group of clients making interest vs. availability very unfavorable for me. I stopped by a small boutique while traveling over the summer and they offered me one based on my purchase history and the fact that I could define in detail the exact bag that I was looking for which they happened to have.

  • Sparky

    Slightly off topic: How do people PAY for Hermes merchandise? From the posts below it sounds like people are dropping $15k to $50k in one visit – way beyond the credit limit of the average credit card. Do they have special, unlimited credit cards? Are they doing bank transfers? Checks?
    Any advice welcome.

    • ini

      High limit credit cards. For example, the famous AMEX Black Card doesn’t really have a limit. A Chinese billionaire put a $100+ million dollar purchase on it. My friend’s AMEX Platinum (not exclusive at all) had the limit removed recently.

  • Sam

    I found the most amazing Vintage purple alligator Hermes on skye.pm so lucky they featured it and I was able to snap it up. Only 5 were made.

  • Debs

    I went to glassdoor.com, as I was curious to see what Sales Associates had to say: Found this regarding “rules” for selling!

    “Don’t believe the Hype ”

    Former Employee – Sales Specialist in Beverly Hills, CA

    Doesn’t Recommend

    Negative Outlook

    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    Amazing heritage company, true luxury. Product literally sells itself.

    Cons

    Associates are instructed to lie to their customers about the availability of popular items to the point where you are racially profiling them. They don’t want unworthy people to have Birkins. They make new rules so often that you have to just sign off on a computer and hope you don’t break one.

    Advice to Management

    Management is a joke, an inside joke because you never see them. They are never on the floor to support people probably because they are in the back “running tape” on the security cameras to find an excuse to fire people so they can feel important and powerful. Every employee is miserable and they only stay because of the name.

  • Vicky

    If I were to get one? I’m sure it’ll be a second hand one from some consignments I’m familiar with. In the combo that I just can’t resist. Coz seriously, the now-price of Chanel scare me off. I don’t think I can brave the Birkin.

  • Zezza

    Hum…. So much poverty in the world and people are buying Birkins. Yes, it is nice to have a beautiful handbag but not for the ridiculous amount they are. Seriously humans need to put it into perspective.

  • Yalda

    you will not believe my story ! i went to this dumpy little shoe repair store in Beverley Hills to have a couple of leather boots repaired, i look up, i see this red beauty hanging in the back area with a bunch of other channel and luis vuiton bags behind a dirty curtain, i ask the guy who is a south american boy if the bag is for a customer left for repair? he said no its for sale. i asked to look at it, what a beauty, in mint condition, just missing the key to the lock, it even had the cover bag and certificate of authenticity, i told him i pay cash give me your asking price. … long story short i walked out a few hundred dollars lighter but got me a one of kind birkin worth 25000 or maybe more. i feel like i robbed a bank ….. how on earth a hermes birkin end up at such a place ?

  • Fiona Marano

    Hi
    I don’t use Facebook, but I wanted to share my story. A friend of mine (elderly and elegant) was going to Paris and I asked her casually if she would buy on my behalf a Hermes Birkin black Togo 35 cms. She was at the back of a queue at Hermes St Faubourg, and was asked by a salesperson what she was there for. She pulled out my requirement list on a scrap of paper, and was asked to follow him, to an area beyond the queue and there it was…just like that. Brief filled!!

  • Luxuryluver

    I purchased the Hemes Kelly Dog with GHW in the smallest size. Even in the tightest notch, it is still too big for my wrist and flips over. Has anyone ever had one a leather specialist cut down the size of their bracelet? Or is this too risky to try?

  • Fereisa Sari

    I have always wanted a Birkin bag. At least for the last 5 years. I don’t really know why I like it so much, but I do.

    At first I was just not ready to spend that much money to buy a Birkin, even if I could afford it. I always thought that it was way too expensive. Not only that, the bag has always been so elusive that buying it direct from a Hermes store seemed like impossible. Not to mention how intimidating it feels to go into a Hermes store looking for a Birkin. I also refrained from buying from a reseller, because of the high premium they put on the price.

    So I started to educate myself about Birkin bags, and also about the Hermes brand itself. I slowly found out why a Birkin bag is so expensive and so difficult to get. I used the fashion websites as my guide to the bag, its price and quality. Still the bag seemed just so unreachable to me.

    I guess at the time, I never realized that I really wanted the bag. So I went on a rampage in buying other bags because I thought having a birkin was a dream that would never come true. I bought Chanel bags, vintage and new, although they were never really my style. But my sister likes Chanel so much, I thought I liked it too. Then I started looking for bags with similar charisma as the Birkin. I got a Michael Kors Hamilton bag (the one with the padlock), then I bought two Rachel Zoe bags with a strap around the body so similar to a Birkin, then two Mullberry Bayswater bags (which also quite reminded me of Birkin), then a Celine mini luggage (which I thought has a similar size and feel of B35) and so on. I even bought a B35 replica which I thought could satiate my obsession to the bag. But I guess they never could replace the real Birkin in my head so it was either I gave them away or sold them.

    At one point this year, I realized that I had bought so many bags, with enough worth to buy two Birkin bags, if I had just gone and tried to buy them directly in Hermes store in Europe. With this realization, I started to sell all of the bags which I didn’t really like (not as much as I like Birkin). I also consulted a colleague who successfully bought a Birkin bag in Paris just by walking into the store. I read some of the articles about how to buy Birkin bags in Paris as reference.

    I decided to go for it, since I was going to Paris for my birthday anyway. I thought no harm in trying, and I might just get lucky.

    I was in Paris effectively for 3 days. My colleague told me that I should go to the store in the morning, at about 10:30 to 11 AM to beat the crowd. I thought, geez, crowd? Who would come to Hermes store so early just after the store opened?

    So the first day I went to the store in Rue de Sevres. I came there at about 11:30, and to my surprise there were already A LOT of people. I walked around the store looking at the bracelets, the watches, the shoes. Trying to grab the attention of one of the SA. So I got an SA to serve me, and I bought two KDT bracelets one for me, and another one for a friend who asked me to get for her. I also registered myself in Hermes France. Then I asked the SA if they had Birkin in stock. Turned out, she didn’t know because she was not an SA in the bag department, and she told me to ask there. That showed how much uniformed I was haha!

    I went to the bag department, and I was told flat that they don’t have a Birkin. I didn’t press on, because I knew from my research that being nice to the SA would be key. So I left the store that day, but still determined to try again the next day.

    The next day it was my birthday. I went first at around 11 AM to a different store in Paris, in George V near Champs Elyssees. I figured Hermes has two store around that area, so if I couldn’t get a Birkin in one of the stores, I could just try the other store.

    When I walked in, they were nice and polite and pointed me to the bag department. I straight away got an SA to help me and I just asked for the bag. She asked for my passport and asked me which type that I wanted. So I told her I wanted either 30 or 35 in Togo or Clemence, don’t care the colour as long as it wasn’t a light colour. She went in to look in the stock list and came back with a no stock. I was quite sad, and bought a bearn wallet (which I have wanted too for quite some time) to comfort myself.
    I also asked the SA if the waiting list for Birkin was still there, and she said no more. So it was first come first serve, and everyone got the same chance to get one if they were lucky.

    After that store, I went to the Fauburg St. Honore which is the flagship store for Hermes. In there I was directed straight to the bag department, and then told to wait in
    line! It was already about 11:45 AM and I thought that I had a slim chance of getting the bag. After waiting in line for about 15 minutes, I had an SA to serve me. Again she asked for the same details, and I told her what I want. She went in to check and came back again with a NO stock. I was disappointed, but at least I tried. I told her that I would try again the next day.

    And I did go again the next day, which was my last day in Paris. It was Saturday, and I went straight to the Flagship store. My friend who went with me had a hunch that since they told me to wait in line, I may have a better chance of getting the bag. I just went along with that hope :).

    I came at 11ish AM, and the store was already crowded. I had to wait for five minutes to get served. Then when an SA came to serve me, I repeated the same things that I wanted. I also told her that it was my birthday the day before, and I really really wanted a Birkin bag. She smiled and took my passport and went in to check. After waiting for 10 minutes, I was told by the security guard to follow him to another part of the store. It was less crowded there. I couldn’t contain my excitement because I knew that it meant that they have a stock!! I nearly jumped up and down at the store.

    The SA came with a very huge orange box and I almost fainted from excitement. She opened the box and showed me a Birkin 35 in Feu Orange. The Hermes color. She said, happy birthday. I was in a daze and was speechless. The SA told me to try see myself in the mirror with the bag. And I did. I told her I would buy the bag.

    It was such an experience and I couldn’t be happier. To me the whole process of getting the Birkin bag was so rewarding. From the realization that I really only wanted a Birkin bag, to selling all my other bags that I didn’t really want, to going back and forth to different stores in Paris and getting rejected a few times :).

    As vain as this whole story sound, this whole experience taught me one thing: that you should only chase what you want and dream of, and never settle for less. Who would’ve thought that it would apply to buying a Birkin bag :)

  • LadyNorwood

    My husband and I were in Biarritz (south west France) and, oh what a surprise, there was the Hermès store (a surprise for my husband, not for me haha)! There were a couple of Birkins in store but neither was what I really wanted. We were chatting to the super nice sales lady and told her how difficult it was to buy a Birkin in the UK. She was surprised and invited us to sit with her in a private room – she brought us coffee (well he had coffee, I had champagne), then produced big books of leather and hardware selections. We chose exactly what we wanted, we ordered and paid for it there and then, it was made to order and delivered by courier to us in London about eight months later. She also rang ahead to the store in Cannes to reserve some Oran sandals and also to enquire if they had any Kelly bags in stock. The sales ladies in Avignon are also super nice and friendly. Sadly, the same cannot be said for the sales assistants in the Paris stores (they were very supercilious, until a lovely Scottish lady served us who said they were all mean to her as well)….

    • psny15

      thats how it should be

  • josie

    Prive Porter sells fakes. They had a pop up store in Aspen last summer and we’re run out of town for selling fakes. Don’t be fooled!!!

  • josie

    Prive Porter is a scam. They sell fakes and we’re run out of Aspen in 2015 for selling fake bags. Do not purchase from them!

  • Eilis

    My dad walked into the store in Dublin and just asked for one. Within 20 minutes he had it.

    • psny15

      and thats how it should be

  • Salut Lucas
  • Rio

    It’s ridiculous. All these comments about how hard it is to buy an Hermes bag and that you have to build a good relationship with an SA and buy bunch of stuff first with the hope of eventually being offered one or able to purchase one just blows my mind. It is the exclusivity that makes it so damn expensive i get it, that’s their game. But let me tell you this, my aunt was a housekeeper to a very wealthy family in London (always included in the forbes rich list every year).
    Over the years whenever they do a clear out of their closet, they would give my aunt loads of designer clothes some even had tags on them unused! gowns that costs thousands of £ AND guess what? Birkin bags.. yes bags, not one but 3 Birkins she acquired from them over the years along with other designer bags. SHe kept them all, gave 2 to her daughter along with the designer clothes, and the ones they cannot use like party ovetlr the top long gowns, she sold on shops that sell 2nd hand designer stuff haha.
    Yes they are old used bags but hey, would you actually know that someone who carries an authentic Birkin bought their bag brand new from the store when eventually your bag is going to get old anyway so whatever the state of the bag is when you acquired it, a Birkin is a Birkin right? Haha! I just find it ridiculous that a lot of women do everything to get their hands on Hermes bags when other people are just given it. I actually borrowed one from her before and used it for few hours and didn’t like it because it’s so damn heavy it hurt my arm!

    • psny15

      I agree Rio, some people feed into the stupidity Hermes is trying to propagate – i think the Birkin should be $ 5000 maximum but some people are willing so spend more so Hermes is over charging

  • psny15

    I am a traditionalist and i understand i may come off as being snooty but i own that as well – i am not going to buy scarves or SLG at Hermes in hope of creating a relationship with a SA? what nonsense, Sales folks should work hard to get their business and not vice versa, Living in the UES – i dont think any woman bends over backwards to create a relationship with a SA especially when the resale market is flooded with Birkins – if you go to Encore or Michaels or the perfect purse you can find a few at any given time. The women who have the birkins get it via their shoppers or are presented the choice they want so lets be realistic here

    Ive seen youtube videos of women traveling to France and going to the Hermes store everyday for a bag – it kinda reaks of desperation to me (again just my opinion so try not to hang me for it). These people plan their entire trip around obtaining a bag? LOL.

    At one point in time to some folks, having a birkin means you have entered a club of the select few – i dont feel the need to enter that club. That point has passed when the Kartrashians and rhony girls have plenty of birkins and super fakes are just as common as the real ones.

    Ive never wanted a birkin nor had a birkin. I DISAGREE with Hermes policy of exclusion (sounds a little Trumpy to me) – i like to be pampered by a sales associate and let them work to get my business, not the other way around. When you go to school for over 10 years and have a doctorate level education and you look at those frivolous sales representatives at Hermes who mock customers and provide poor service – all you can do is Laugh

    Is it a beautiful bag, yes! but again i find it amusing that someone would waste their time and energy and pay 5 figures to get this bag.

  • Anonymous

    I walked into an Hermes store with no intention of buying anything. I was wearing a t-shirt of a movie and jeans. One of the SA approached me and we started talking about my t-shirt because it was his favorite movie. At the end of the conversation, he asked me what I was looking for. I jokingly said Birkin or Kelly. He took down my color and size preferences. I didn’t think much of it, but 2 weeks later I got the call for a Birkin 30 black w gold hardware. Suffice to say, I am now a client for life. Will never go to any other H store or any other SA.

  • Donna fox

    And I

  • Donna fox

    I should add that although the bag is beautiful and you can’t deny the craftsmanship I do find it pretentious. I never told any of my friends I bought it. I didn’t have a comfort level carrying it. That’s why it’s on the closet. On another note it’s a good investment I can sell for at least a $5000.00 profit of what I’ve seen and heard is correct. I’ve carried my Chanel bag everyday and everywhere for 20 years. I got my money’s worth from it and then some and I occasionally clean it and I touch it up with a black sharpie and it looks great. I’ve heard that a woman should always have a good quality bag, shoes and a watch. If you have them you can sometimes get away with less expensive clothes.

  • Allchik

    It took me less than a month to receive my birkin. My husband and I had spent $8,300.00 the first time before we received the color and size I wanted. After receiving my birkin, I was completely in love with the brand and had acquired many more items. A month later I bought my Constance and was offered a croc birkin but, on my husbands account. Just two weeks ago I was offered to create my own birkin which I postponed until March. But, if anyone is actually serious about their purchase, you’re more than welcome to contact me and we can go get you one. It would be straight from the Hermes boutique in Southern California. I can only do ONE birkin possibly TWO on my husbands account.

  • Jackie

    I was shopping at Hermes Madison Ave. NYC with my girlfriend. It was late in the day, close to closing, and we were looking at scarves, wallets, etc. my friend went to the ladies room as I went to pay for my few items.
    All of a sudden I heard a commotion and saw a group of women form a huddle around a SA. I saw a flash of bright orange in the middle of the huddle. Something made me blurt out “is that a Birkin?” And with that the SA answered “yes! And you have 30 seconds to decide if you want it”. At that moment my girlfriend came back from the ladies room . I asked her what I should do and she said I would be crazy if I didn’t and after all, “it is the signature color”!
    That was 14 years ago and I have worn the bag maybe four times. It is still pristine, sitting on the shelf in its lovely orange dust bag with all of the paperwork. I want to wear it, but ever time I try, it seems too too big for me– I am 5’2″ and it is a 35!
    In any case, it was that easy! I have since purchased several other Hermes bags and am still trying to procure the perfect Kelly– not so easy!!!!

  • Madamcouture

    Any luck with getting a Kelly at any of the London Hermes stores ?

  • Crystal

    I was advised by an SA in a NY boutique in order to become a VIP and be offered the bag I would need to spend $60,000 a year. I was told that If I knew a VIP they would be able to purchase the bag for me. Has anyone else been advised of such a policy?

  • JMayer

    Forty years old, It was 2010, I decided I would get a bag I’d seen twenty years before on the streets of Italy, of course not the real Hermes, but somehow I knew it was special, even as a copy. It caught my eye and obsession, it was a perfect bag somehow. I knew at forty that it was an Hermes Bikin. Age is wonderful in some ways!
    I saved for the bag, not in any way willing to ask my husband who has several aircraft to purchase it for me. I felt it was a purse after all, and I would rather have his respect than let him in on what I actually would spend of such a thing.
    Highland Park Hermes was always plush and friendly, even to me, jean clad, no jewels, and from Louisiana. Before my weekend to Dallas, I did pray, kneeling in my bedroom, to pray if this was a sin to spend this much on a bag, and not on a second hand car for my maid that My Father in Heaven would show me. I did not want to do this if it was not right. I asked for a sigh to know it was okay. I really did.
    I walked into the store, well I wanted either a Birkin or a Kelly. There, first sight as I walked in, was my favorite, light turquois blue color on a “just arrived that day” Kelly. Imagine, what I thought when I realized the price was almost half of what I had planned to spend? I had saved what I had seen bags online were, hadn’t really shopped in a store for them, and so I was thrilled to have enough for, maybe two!!! I told the wonderful, young sales person that if a tan Birkin was to ever come in, I might be interested. She assured me that they were very hard to get and that the stores only received what was sent. The next week she called. Yes, and it was that gorgeous brown, tan color with gold hardware. It’s a good overseas travel bag.
    I think it was meant. I prayed. I think you cannot go wrong this way.
    I believe Texas stores may have more than most. I was in New York this summer and took my Kelly. I get too much attention with those bags here, so it’s just for out of town. I thought New York would be the perfect place. All I saw on the streets in NYC was my Chloe that I left at home. Heavens everyone had a Marcie Bag! Somehow I felt antiquated with the Kelly. I was even snubbed at the Hermes Store on Madison close to my hotel. My bag is so pretty, why did they do that? There were no Birkins or Kellys there either.
    Texas and pray. That’s all you need to know!