Let’s say you just had a gorgeous Louis Vuitton handbag for Christmas and you just want to be sure it’s the real thing. How can you tell?
I can only give you the basics, but most of the times, it’s quite enough to determine whether your handbag is designer-made or designer-inspired.
You begin by taking a good look at the bag. Even if 90% of the fashion houses moved their production overseas, the materials and the overall look has a very high quality standard. There should be no loose or missing stitches, the color of the thread should be evenly spaced. For the leather bags, the logo should be engraved on it (not just printed on the surface).
The next step is taking a good look at the hardware. All of it should match in color and sheen and should be scratch free. Many hardware pieces carrying big names on, are protected by plastic covers (supposed to be removed when purchased). The same as before, the name or logo should be engraved on the hardware, not just embossed or printed. Many houses sign also the strap hardware.
Then you begin a careful inspection of the handbag: the different materials composing it (lining, hardware etc). The leather that the bag is made of even different (Calfskin, Goatskin, Lambskin, Patent Leather) is easy to appreciate if it’s a good quality leather or not. The Lining is made of satin (most of the times) shiny and printed with the logo or name of the designing house. Big fashion designers use leather accents, not plastic, some straps are specially coated (seem to be artificial but revealing a leather middle when looking at the edge of the strap, near a stitched joint).
Most importantly, there should be an authenticity card (a little card with the manufacturer’s logo embossed on one or both sides) with information about your purchased article, sometimes including a magnetic strip, bar code.
Your handbag should carry a serial number. Many houses practice that unique identification number to be found for instance – on the inside pocket for Fendi handbags (all it takes is turning the pocket inside out and find it), on the zipper seam of the handbag for Gucci.
So.. Is it a fake? Or you’ll proudly take your Louis Vuitton out because now you know it’s a real one?