Complete Guide To The Hermes 'IT' Birkin Bag (With Prices) - Handbagholic (2024)

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The Hermes Birkin bag is ‘THE’ bag – it’s a staple for the rich and famous – and is much more than just a bag. It’s more than an accessory that elevates your outfit: It is a part of fashion history. It also happens to be extremely hard to get.

To those of us who adore fashion and handbags, there’s truly nothing more luxurious than opening an Hermès gift box. With its bright – but slightly burnt–orange hue and dark brown trim, we all know that no matter what item is inside that box, it’s something gorgeous. Although everything from Hermès is beautiful, one of the brand’s most iconic accessories is the Hermes Birkin bag.

Complete Guide To The Hermes 'IT' Birkin Bag (With Prices) - Handbagholic (1)

If you’re new to the world of luxury shopping and/or Hermès, we know that you probably have lots of questions about the Birkin bag. We’ve got your answers! Keep reading, because we’ve created a complete guide to the Hermès Birkin bag!

Table of Contents

A History of the Hermès Birkin Bag

On a 1984 flight from Paris to London, legendary singer and actress, Jane Birkin, was seated next to Jean-Louis Dumas, Hermès’ Executive Chairman. For the flight, Birkin carried a straw tote bag. However, this simple tote wasn’t able to meet all of Birkin’s travel needs; nor was it able to meet the demands of being a mother. In fact, while getting settled on the plane, Birkin’s straw tote fell, spilling all of her belongings onto the floor.

Complete Guide To The Hermes 'IT' Birkin Bag (With Prices) - Handbagholic (2)

After discussing her displeasure with her straw bag – as well as leather bags that were too structured – Dumas was inspired to design something new. Using a motion sickness bag, the two worked together to construct something more functional: The Birkin bag. Dumas’ and Birkin’s chance encounter led to the creation of one of the most highly-coveted bags. A match made in fashion heaven!

Hermès Birkin Bag Sizes and Prices

The Birkin is available in a variety of materials, colours, and sizes. With respect to how much Hermès Birkin bags cost, there is unfortunately no set price, and the brand does not post its prices online. Instead, the bags are priced according to size, as well as the materials used to create the bag (i.e., the type of leather used, as well as any other embellishments, such as crystals or diamonds).

We know what you’re thinking (because we’ve thought about it, too): “How can I figure out how much Hermès’ Birkin bags cost? What is the cheapest Hermès Birkin that you can buy? What is the most expensive Birkin? I need to know these things! Otherwise, how will I know how much to save?”

Complete Guide To The Hermes 'IT' Birkin Bag (With Prices) - Handbagholic (3)

Although we are unable to provide you with the exact prices of every single Birkin bag, we’ve managed to dig up several prices for you (take deep breaths):

Birkin 25, Togo: €8,050, $10,400 USD
Birkin 30, Togo: €8,900, $11,600 USD
Birkin 30, Epsom: €8,750
Birkin 35, Togo: €9,850
Birkin 25, Sellier Epsom: €8,650
Birkin 25, Shadow: €10,100
Birkin 25, Sellier Box: €11,900
Birkin 25, Matte Alligator: €39,000

What Size Birkin is Most Popular?

Like many bags, the Birkin is available in several different sizes – four to be exact: Birkin 25, Birkin 30, Birkin 35, and Birkin 40. The size of the bag is based on the length of the bag (i.e., the base of the bag), measured in centimeters.

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So, which size Birkin is the most popular? Well, our research seems to suggest that it is a close tie between the 25 and the 30.

The 25 is a great bag that can house all of your essentials (i.e., a phone, a small cardholder, wireless earphones, hand sanitizer, sunglasses, and keys), without getting too heavy. The 30, on the other hand, is more of an ‘everyday bag’ and can fit a bit more than just your essentials (i.e., phone, keys, a regular-sized wallet, small cardholder, sunglasses, a small makeup bag, a small umbrella, and a small table).

Before committing to a size, make sure that you will be able to carry everything that you need – if you can, try on different sizes in the boutique.

What is the Cheapest Birkin?

Complete Guide To The Hermes 'IT' Birkin Bag (With Prices) - Handbagholic (5)

If you’re looking to add a Birkin to your collection, but are also trying to stay within a budget, then you’re probably interested in buying the cheapest Birkin bag that you can.

Again, the bags are priced based on size and materials. Therefore, the cheapest Birkin bag is going to be a Birkin 25, crafted with Togo leather, which is a soft-pebbled leather made from calfskin.

And, while you’re deciding which Birkin to get, make sure to check out Hermès’ other stunning bags, including which bags are the cheapest. Find out more by reading our blog: The 13 cheapest Hermès bags COMING SOON.

What is the Most Expensive Birkin Bag?

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If money is no object to you, then you might be curious about the most expensive Birkin bag. Sit down and brace yourselves. In 2022, Sotheby’s sold a Diamond Himalaya Birkin 30 for OVER $440,000 USD (the original retail price was $300,000 USD). The bag is made of Niloticus crocodile skin, as well as 18-karat white gold hardware adorned with diamonds. While this version of the Birkin bag is likely not on your wish list, it’s still fun to dream of!

How to Get a Birkin Bag

Any fan of Sex and the City can recall the 2001 episode (“Coulda, Woulda, Shoulda”) wherein Kim Cattrall’s character, Samantha Jones, has trouble buying a Birkin bag. Although this is a fictional scenario, it’s a scenario that has roots in reality: It is not easy to buy a Birkin bag.

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But, why is it so hard to get a Birkin bag? Well, as a way to deal with the increased demand for Birkin bags and to maintain the brand’s desire for exclusivity, Birkin bags have been deemed as quota bags. A quota bag is a special-and-difficult-to-get bag that is only offered to you after you spend a certain amount of money on other Hermès items. You can read about the Hermès quota system here in our blog COMING SOON.

Is it Easiest to Get a Birkin Bag in Paris?

It’s probably safe to assume that many people dream of purchasing a Birkin bag in Paris, France. After all, who doesn’t want to buy a bag from a French luxury bag in the country where it was made?

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Unfortunately, trying to get a Birkin bag in Paris is not going to be any easier (compared to another location).

As discussed in our article about Hermès’ quota system (COMING SOON), once you are offered a quota bag, you need to make a wish list. If/once your wish list is approved, you’re then placed on a waiting list of sorts. More importantly, you need to have a great relationship with your SA – as well as a sizable purchase history with the brand.

Although rumours exist with respect to purchasing a Birkin bag without having any spending history with the brand, these rumours are either just rumours, or instances that only happen in rare and lucky cases.

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If you really want to purchase a Birkin bag in Paris, your best bet is to create a great relationship with an SA at the Paris store, and/or have a significant purchase history with the brand.

It is also very important for you to make an appointment before going to the store. Setting up an appointment will allow the store to understand what you are looking for from the get-go, and it will also ensure that you are connected with an SA.

Bonne chance!

Is it Easy to Get a Birkin in London?

Unfortunately, getting a Birkin bag in London is not any easier than trying to buy a bag in Paris (or any other store).

Complete Guide To The Hermes 'IT' Birkin Bag (With Prices) - Handbagholic (10)

Regardless of location, Birkins are quota bags; which means that the only way you will be able to purchase one is by being offered one. Again, make sure to build a relationship with an SA, as well as one specific location read all about this in our Hermès wish list blog (COMING SOON).

Where to Buy Preloved Birkin Bags?

Since the process of buying a Birkin bag directly from Hermès can be difficult, many people choose to turn to the preloved market.

Something important to note is that Birkins appreciate in value. Thus, you’ll likely be paying more money on the preloved market, compared to buying a brand-new bag from the Hermès store. However, this may be a smarter road to take, as you won’t need to spend money buying other Hermès products (i.e., you won’t have to worry about building a purchase history).

Complete Guide To The Hermes 'IT' Birkin Bag (With Prices) - Handbagholic (11)

Okay, then. Where can you buy preloved Birkin bags? If you’re looking to purchase a Birkin from the secondary market, you need to make sure that you are buying from a reputable place.

A few reputable and trusted retailers are: eBay, Vestiaire Collective, and Rebag. Regardless of where you make your purchase, always be sure to have your bag authenticated, you can find authentication services here.

How Much Do You Have to Spend at Hermès to Get a Birkin?

Hermès is a very mysterious brand. Not only do they not list their bag prices, but they also seem to have no set rules about how much you need to spend at Hermès to get a Birkin.

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Some people believe that you need to spend as much as the price of the Birkin bag (i.e., around $10,000 USD). However, this might not be true.

When it comes to building a spending history at Hermès, this is the most important thing to remember: Only buy what you truly love and will actually use.

Your SAs will know if you really have a love for the brand and the items that you are purchasing, which will help you on your journey to getting a Birkin bag. However, if your SA senses that you are only purchasing products to build up your spending history in order to be offered a Birkin bag, your SA will not take you seriously. And if your SA does not take you seriously, then you will not be offered a Birkin bag – or any quota bag – no matter how much you spend in the store.

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Ultimately, your goal should be to build a great relationship with an Hermès SA, which you can do by being thoughtful with your purchases. Making thoughtful purchases will help you secure an invitation to create an Hermès quota bag wish list.

What’s So Special About a Birkin Bag?

Are Hermès bags worth it? What makes a Birkin so special? Well, if you like fashion, luxury, art, design, craftsmanship, and functionality, then yes, Birkin bags are special and are a worthy investment.

Hermès bags are handmade by one artisan. From start to finish, it takes one artisan up to 40 hours to put together a Birkin bag! As a result of the long production hours (and the brand’s exclusivity), not a lot of Birkins are produced; and this means that these bags are not available on-demand, making them a rare and exclusive item. Therefore, SAs are very selective about whom the bags are sold to.

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Because Birkins are not available on-demand, these bags typically appreciate (i.e., they go up in value). To put this in perspective: Based on results from a 2017 study, researchers revealed: “that the value of Hermès Birkin bags has increased 500% in the last 35 years, [which is] an increase of 14% per year.” This is good news for you because if you spend a lot of money buying a Birkin bag but then decide you no longer want it, you will likely be able to sell the bag for a profit.

Birkin bags are a favorite among the rich and famous and with good reason. The bag was designed to be a carryall; thus, not only are Birkins nice to look at and hard to get, but they are also very functional. They might come with a hefty price tag, but you’ll at least be able to get a lot of use out of your bag!

Where Are Hermès Birkin Bags Made?

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Okay, we know what you want to ask next: “Where are Hermès Birkin bags made?” We get it. When you’re spending a lot of money on something, especially a bag, you want to know where it comes from. The good news is that the brand has remained true to its heritage, and creates its bags in Europe. According to Hermès’ Managing Director, Guillaume de Seynes, leather goods are entirely made in France. In fact, “Hermès objects are manufactured mainly in France, across 52 production sites located in 11 different regions.” Find out more about where Hermes bags are made (The TRUTH) here.

If you don’t want to wait on a list you can always shop pre-loved. Not only does it mean you don’t have to get on a list it also means you can find unique styles and colourways. We always recommend only shopping at resellers where you can benefit from their authentication services, such as:

We strongly recommend that when you purchase any pre-loved designer piece, you should always get it authenticated by a reputable authentication service for peace of mind and protection. You can find authentication services here.

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Further Reading & COMING SOON:
Full list of Hermès bags 2023 (COMING SOON)
13 Cheapest Hermès bags
How Does the Hermès Wish List Work?

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Complete Guide To The Hermes 'IT' Birkin Bag (With Prices) - Handbagholic (2024)


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