How Hermès Beat the Recession

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Somewhere in Australia, lies a crocodile with Eileen Robert's name on it. The fate of this crocodile, a Crocodylus porosus to be specific, is linked to international financial markets, a 1970's British actress who made it big in France, a 172-year-old company that started out making horse harnesses, the tastes of the world's super rich - and if she's lucky and very patient, perhaps, too, to a New York City grandmother named Eileen Robert.


Within days this porosus's hide will be tanned and sent to an atelier (because to call it a workshop would be declasse) in the French town of Pantin. There, one of a few dozen highly skilled craftsmen will spend 48 hours over two weeks using tools specifically made for this task. He will use his own hands, two needles, a trademark stitch and a proprietary linen thread soaked in beeswax to craft one of the world's most expensive and highly sought-after luxury goods: the Hermès handbag.

This will be one of about 3,000 coveted saltwater-crocodile-skin bags made this year and will fetch somewhere in the neighborhood of $50,000. People put their names on lists and wait two to three years to own such a bag. They spend tens of thousands of dollars on scarves and jewelry and clothing just for the opportunity to spend thousands more on a crocodile-skin pocketbook. It is that obsessive demand – combined with an intentionally limited supply –  that has allowed Hermès to prosper in an economic environment that has decimated its competition.

While many of its competitors are suffering under the strain of the global recession, Hermès, an iconic brand famous for its silk scarves and handbags, had a remarkably good first quarter. As some luxury brands like Gianni Versace shutter their stores, Hermès plans to open several new shops this year.

The French-based company's sales rose 3.2 percent to $603 million over the first three months of the year. Much of that growth is attributed to sales of leather goods, which rose 21.7 percent to $287 million.

"Hermès' position is unique; it is at the very top of the pyramid in terms of luxury goods," says Francesca Di Pasquantonio, a Hermès analyst for Deutsche Bank in Milan, Italy. "The goods are very expensive. They make you pay for the quality they provide and the brand is classic, an icon. Handbags are the core of the business and a successful product. They are produced only in limited numbers, never overwhelming the market," she says.

Enter Eileen Robert. She already owns a crocodile Kelly bag, one of Hermès' two most sought-after lines and named for actress and princess Grace Kelly. As for the highly desired other line, the Birkin, she says: "I totally want a Birkin." Robert, a New York City real estate broker who gives her age as "grandmother," is a self-described "handbag lover" who insists she is "not an indulgent person" but owns at least 75 bags.

Lately, she has been buying bags from Bottega, another company, but Hermès she says, is a cut above the competition. "The appeal of an Hermès bag is its design and its usability. It is a true luxury item, but it's affordable in a way that a yacht isn't," she says. "It's really an investment. Everybody wants one, but not everyone can have one." That's for sure. Prices for a Birkin bag, the company's flagship purse, made from leather, start around $7,500. Bags from more exotic skins can sell for prices into the six figures. The bags were named for British singer and actress Jane Birkin.

"The price is above and beyond everyone else," says Michael Tonello, author of "Bringing Home the Birkin," who spent six years circumventing Hermès' years-long waiting lists to get bags to wealthy clients when they wanted them. "The people who can afford these goods are not affected by the recession," Tonello says. "Even if they lost millions of dollars in the market, they are still worth hundreds of millions of dollars. If you want something super special, if you want a handmade crocodile bag and you can afford it, Hermès is the only place you'll go. That's why," he says, "the brand is recession-proof."

The handbags, unlike some of Hermès less-expensive goods, such as perfume and watches, are sold exclusively through company-owned shops.

Sales of those goods, reliant on both middle-class customers and middleman retailers, were down in the first quarter.

The company's perfume sales fell 28.7 percent while watches fell 29.5 percent. "Fragrances and watches are dominated by the wholesale distribution channel and are suffering the trends of everyone else given the credit crunch. Many of the third-party [vendors] have cut back on orders," says Di Pasquantonio. "Handbags are produced in limited quantities. The handbags and silks are sold through company owned retails stores, which means they are not being hurt by middlemen. They have a direct relationship with the customer," she says.

Those cheaper goods, Tonello calls "aspirational merchandise for the middle class. These are goods for people whose spending is actually affected by the recession," he says.

The importance of handbags to the company – particularly expensive exotic leathers like crocodile –  has led Hermès to farm its own animals in Australia. Leather goods make up 40 percent of the company's profits.

"It can take three to four crocodiles to make one of our bags so we are now breeding our own crocodiles on our own farms, mainly in Australia," Patrick Thomas told Reuters at its Global Luxury Summit in Paris. The company is also looking to train new craftsmen to add to the 1,400 currently employed by the company. "We cannot face demand. We have massive over-demand. We are limited by our ability to train new craftsmen," Thomas says.

Tag: Hermès

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CHANEL EMOTICON FLAP BAG

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A brand new Chanel Flap Bag with peace, cat, and CC graphic on it, can this lovely get any cuter? Take a closer look and you’ll know why it’s worth the read. Introducing the Chanel Emoticon Flap Bag that looks like no other!

Cute, charming and definitely darling, this newest flap bag from Chanel might be a good reason to invest in another flap bag. The mixture of patterns is just too winsome not to notice!

With its thick diamond quilting, and the gold-like CC logo on the front, this bag is a definite investment! It can brighten any plain outfit of yours as it can go well over your shirt, jeans and sneakers kind of day, but can also accessorize your dress and sandals combo.

There are not enough details available for this newbie but we’ll keep you in the know by posting an update anytime soon.

Update:

Chanel Emoticon Flap Bag
Style code: A01112
Size: 6.3′ x 10.2′ x 2.8′ inches
Price: $3500 USD, €3280 euro, $5230 SGD, $27500 HKD, $5300 AUD, ¥433080 JPY

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Tag: Chanel bag Flap EMOTICON

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The 15 Things Amanda Wants in Her Closet for Fall 2016

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CELINE POCKET LARGE FLAP ON CHAIN BAG

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A beautiful tri-color evening bag from Celine, more likely suited as a Wallet On Chain (WOC), this bag is perfect for women who are never afraid to go bold when it comes to mixing and matching colors. And if that’s what you’re all after for, then you might fall in love with the Celine Pocket Large Flap On Chain Bag.

This lovely Pocket Large Flap On Chain Bag is a natural stunner with its light camel multicolor in shiny smooth calfskin. What more, the calfskin is also complemented by calfskin lining.

Take it with you anywhere you go and you’ll look extra stylish and polish as you ride the subway, clutch it in your hands as you stroll to the nearest coffee shop and grab your favorite espresso to start your day right.

Celine Pocket Large Flap On Chain Bag in Multicolor Shiny Smooth Calfskin is priced at $1100 USD, €750 euro, £650 GBP, $1400 SGD, $8500 HKD, ¥115000 JPY and the combination of Shagreen and Smooth Calfskin is priced at $1700 USD, €1200 euro, £1000 GBP, $2200 SGD, $13500 HKD, ¥185000 JPY, available via Celine boutiques.

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Tag: bag Céline Chain Flap Large Pocket ON

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PROENZA SCHOULER PS1 WHIPSTITCH BAG

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The classic and holy grail bag Proenza Schouler PS1 is a famous bag that now comes in a new cover: Whipstitch. As if this bag couldn’t get any better, geniuses behind the brand thought of a way to reinvent this favorite style staple.

Made from genuine leather with leather lining and silver-tone hardware, this beauty comes in two colors you can choose from: Warm Sand and Black & Orange. It has a fold-over flat top with metal flap-hook closure with whipstitch trim that made it all the more darling.

It also features an adjustable and detachable shoulder strap and a handle for easy transitioning from being a handbag to being a shoulder bag. This beauty also has an interior zip pocket and exterior back pocket.

Measuring 10′ x 6.5′ x 3′ (W x H x D) inches and is available via Proenza Schouler e-store.

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The Real Cost of Buying A Really Cheap Faux Celine Bag

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An authentic new Celine Luggage Nano costs approximately $2,700. A pre-loved Celine Nano will be somewhere around $2,000. And since we’re on the subject, a real Celine bag will never cost $500 or $600 even if it’s used. And not even $800. The reason why I’m saying this is because I spotted many of these fakes on eBay. So how could a high-quality faux Celine bag cost less than $150? Only if it’s made of plastic-like material!

I actually received some pictures of the bag and the question “What do you think of this bag?”. So here it is!

Celine Nano Knockoff Review

Celine Nano Knockoff From Afbags.ru

Replica Celine Nano Luggage Back Side

The back of the Celine Nano knockoff

Replica Celine Nano Luggage Bag Side

Celine Nano Knockoff Side Details

Replica Celine Nano Luggage Bag Viewed from the Top

Celine Nano Knockoff Inside Look

Faux Celine Bag – Dead Giveaways

The faux Celine bag in this review was only $148. But at what cost? The bag looks absolutely terrible and it’s an extremely obvious fake. As I’ve told you before, I think it’s actually a better idea to buy inspired bags that cheap-looking replica Celine bags like this. Some replicas can only be spotted as fake by a trained eye but it’s not the case with this faux Celine bag.

First of all, it’s clearly not made of real leather. The stamp is hideous, the inside tag is completely wrong, the lining material is also wrong and the stitching couldn’t possibly be more crooked than this. Also, the logo stamp, the handles and the zipper pull are all way too big!

Afbags.ru Review – Good & Bad Things

What I appreciate about this site is that they show real replica photos and don’t steal photos of authentic bags like others do. I also appreciate the fact that they priced this faux Celine bag accordingly. But this doesn’t mean they are a good choice for fake Celine bags.

I also like the fact that they are pretty honest when it comes to their return & refund policy. They have a detailed explanation for the reasons why they proceed the way they do.

Their guarantee. Even if I like the fact that they’re straightforward, this doesn’t change the fact that their return & refund policy is terrible.

What I don’t like about this site is that not all their replica bags are fairly priced. And since this post is about fake Celine bags, I looked through their Celine collection. As a matter of fact, some of their replica Celine bags are ridiculously expensive even though they don’t look similar to the authentic at all. For example, this Celine Tie Tote replica is $598!!!

Overpriced Knockoff Celine Tie Tote

This Knockoff Celine Tie Tote is $598

Afbags.ru Online Reviews

I’ve seen some YouTube reviews of a particular faux Celine bag from afbags.ru – the black smooth leather Nano. Here are my thoughts:

1. The replicas the reviewers received look better than the bag in the site photos
2. Even though they are better than the ones on the site, they’re still not great replicas.

I also found some other afbags.ru reviews online and here is what people are saying:
1. They were previously known as http://www.bagsloveme.ru/ and http://bagsame.ru/
2. The bags are NOT 1:1 counter quality like the owner claims they are. (duh!) Stitching doesn’t match authentic bags and neither does the lining of the bags. Their LV canvas does not align and their LV replica bags have no date stamps.
3. One of their customers said that she emailed Tony prior to her purchase to ask him questions and figure out some details. As soon as she sent the email with her payment info and the money was picked up, he stopped answering her emails and that was it. Sounds like classic scam to me but maybe he answered after all, I don’t know.

So what’s the verdict?

The purpose of this replica handbag blog is to help you girls find the best quality for the replica bags you’re looking for. I would never recommend a replica I would never wear myself. There’s a replica bag for every budget but it’s important to know the flaws you should expect.

Buying the best quality out there is sometimes just too pricey even if we’re talking replicas and I get that. But it’s better to save up some money than buy an obvious knockoff like this. And let me say this one more time: you can’t expect a 1:1 quality faux Celine bag to cost under $200. Quality is expensive, no matter if we’re talking about real designer bags or luxury replicas.

I still don’t know if I have the answer to the question “Which site has the best fake Celine bags?”. But I can tell you for sure that afbags.ru is not it.

Overall, this is not a site I would recommend even though there are some things I do like about them. If you want to avoid getting a sub-par quality faux Celine bag like this yourself, you can check out all the how to tell if Celine bag is authentic guides on my blog. Good luck!

Tag: bag Céline

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