In the late ’90s, Marc Jacobs set off an It bag craze that hasn’t let up 15 years on. There’s now an epic arsenal of classic Vuitton shapes made for any possible micro-occasion. This season, the latest LV must-have speaks its must-haveness at a lower decibel than some of its forebears as the brand emphasizes quality and craft. Take, for example, the new Speedy bag in python, a paragon of handbag production that requires over 400 technical maneuvers in fabrication to realize. The most challenging aspect being, that while each python hide measures up to 8 meters long, they are not very wide, so several skins must be “matched” to obtain perfect symmetry and even coloring. It’s the kind of unparalleled attention to detail that makes an LV an LV.
Vuitton has its laboratory and special-order workshop in Asnières, France, where eccentric special commissions like birthday cake boxes, cocktail cases, travel safes, portable libraries, and cricket trunks are produced. It was there that we captured the rainbow of exotic skins and other impossibly luxe details below.
The python Speedy by the numbers
Over 400 – Number of fabrications, treatments, and operations required to realize a single bag
12 – Pieces of leather, including the python and interior lambskin lining
9 – Pieces of hardware (4 for the handles, 2 for the zips, 3 for the strap)
I always love the most expensive things but often can’t afford to get everything my heart desires. I buy luxury items because they’re great quality, they last forever and there is certain trust you have in these brands. As everyone knows there have been many replicas made of luxury items. If you’d like to buy vintage/ second hand there’s a few things you should know first. Other than that our best bet is to buy directly from the brand stores to ensure authentication of the products.
Louis Vuitton is a huge international brand and many fakes have been made over the years here’s a easy guide to tell the REALS FROM THE FAKES:
1. KNOW YOUR BAG
This may sound easy but it’s not…people buy bags online for crazy amounts thinking it must be the real thing but don’t realize the company doesn’t even produce the style they’re purchasing.
Louis Vuitton has never done Vernis in black! Try your bag on at a boutique, check the VUITTON website, or Elux, buy a catalog- etc, but make sure that the bag you are looking for was ever made by Louis Vuitton. This is especially common in Multicolore bags- (there was never an Multicolor Backpack, Ellipse, Papillon etc), Cherry Blossom (no CB Speedy, Alma nor Cabas tote, Pegase), Cerises (no Papillon, Ellipse, Cabas Piano, Mezzo or Alto) or vintage piece.
2. KNOW IT’S PARTS
What is it “supposed” to be lined in? Should it have feet? What does the base look like? Should it have a d-ring inside? Where? Does it have a date code? Should it? Where?You can check the Vuitton website or your local boutique for this information. If it is supposed to be lined in brown cotton canvas, it needs to be lined in brown cotton canvas. There have never been brown suede linings- even in the vintage pieces. Alcantara kind of looks like a suede-y material, but it isn’t suede and although is found in a greyish mushroomy color, it isn’t found in dark brown. A Speedy of any age should have brown cotton canvas lining, so if you see any other lining- you know it isn’t authentic.
3. KNOW IT’S MONOGRAM PLACEMENT
Know its Monogram placement: Louis Vuitton has been in production since 1854! Their style is classic, and quality- phenomenal! The traditional Monogram Toile canvas that is so popular today- had its beginnings in 1896. The monogram itself can give clues as to authenticity. Louis Vuitton is very careful about the way that the monogram is placed on any piece. Most of its styles are the same today as they were when they first came out- with a few exceptions. The actual LV monogram is usually (with the exception of some vintage pieces) symetrical from side to side in all monogram styles (traditional, Multicolore, Cerises, Mini mono, Vernis etc.).
3. WATCH THE STITCHING
Stitching should be very even and regular. The same number of stitches will be found in similar locations on similar bags… for example the leather tab that the handle attaches onto on any size monogram Speedy bag will always have 5 regular, even stitches across the top.
4. MADE IN?
Made in Spain? Yes, while it is true that authentic Louis Vuitton is made in France, for over 25 years, Louis Vuitton has also produced bags in the USA, Spain, Germany and Italy. It is not true that a Louis Vuitton bag has to be marked “Made in France” to be authentic.
5. KNOW THE COMPANY
Louis Vuitton has been making trunks since 1854. They have done an incredible job at keeping their brand’s value at a prestigious level. One of the reasons that they have been able to do this is by not discounting.Louis Vuitton does not discount,even at a boutique or Neiman Marcus (or Saks, Nordstrom etc.) They just don’t do it… ever! There are no end of the year sales, no sample sales… no sales period.Louis Vuitton does not have outlets, or seconds or irregulars.
Never. If you return a purse that is irregular for any reason, they’ll usually take it back, but they will not discount it and then resell it. They will simply destroy the bag. There are no outlet stores for “last year’s models.
When you DO buy Louis Vuitton from a boutique… it will come with tags- but they are NEVER attached to the bag. Other designer labels like Chloe, Marc Jacobs, Coach will do this- but at Louis Vuitton- tags are usually tucked into a pocket or included in an envelope that comes with your receipt. This little white plastic LV circle tag…. with an attached tag? This was NEVER made by Louis Vuitton. If you see it attached, it isn’t real.
This weird yellow card was NEVER used by Louis Vuitton… if you see one included in an auction you are looking at, it is not authentic. For some reason, the fakers all use this dark bronzed envelope with a Louis Vuitton sticker on it (to the left below- with the lock on it)… LV has NEVER used anything like this.
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