Why does the Hermès Birkin bag still fascinate fashion so much?

Ultimate icon, Holy Grail of fashionistas, handbag more glamorous than the discography of Marilyn Monroe, the Hermès Birkin since its creation in 1984, reigns supreme. And if exclusivity is the new black, the Birkin is its standard. 1984, on an Air France Paris-London flight, a destiny takes shape (literally). Jane Birkinrising star of sixties pop, and Jean-Louis Dumas, artistic brain of Hermès at the time, are seated side by side. A bag is knocked over, things are scattered and destiny does its work: Dumas offers Jane to design a bag for her, luxurious and practical, a sketch he made on a vomit bag. Although the bag bears her name, bubbly Jane has only owned five or six, donating her relics to charity once she had cherished them. In 2015, she even asked the brand to change the name of the bag, not supporting the process of manufacturingin crocodile skin, a practice that the brand has since stopped.

Look but don’t touch!

If the Birkin were a star, it would be Beyonce – unbeatable, irreproachable. Meticulously crafted by expert hands, each stitch is a declaration of love. Produced in editions as limited as the tickets for Lana Del Rey’s last concert at the Olympia, the Birkins are deserved. Hermès only produces 12,000 to 70,000 of these masterpieces per year, making the purchase an obstacle course. Being a loyal customer, or having a friend well placed in the luxury aristocracy, that’s the key. The costs ? If in 2001 a Birkin cost €4,000, expect to pay at least €10,000 today. These wonders are like good wine: they improve with time. It is therefore not surprising that a vintage model sells for twice its initial price, or a Birkin goes for €200,000 on Vestiaire Collective.


Not reserved for the elite, the Birkin is all the rage even among Gen Z. TikTok witness this with its trendy hashtags like #janebirkinfyingbag where fashionistas accessorize their bags to resemble the deceased, following her flirtatious aesthetic. Other curious people are tempted by renting a Birkin for a bling-bling weekend, from €270 per day, just that! The Birkin, whether new, vintage or rented, remains the timeless symbol of French chictranscending generations and borders.

@lilpeshi we all need to be Jane Birkinifying our bags ???????? this is the CUTEST EVER!! #janebirkinbag #handbaginspo #custombagsfyp #coquettefashion #coachbag #frenchfashion @Coach? mad. Ave. Perfume Ad – Charles Wilp & Marvin Martin

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