Since we buy, trade, consign, and sell luxury purses, we see a lot of products moving in and out of LuxExchange. We guarantee our products are 100% authentic, and we inspect them carefully. But what are some tell-tale signs, you ask? Let’s take a look at three dead-giveaways that a bag is a knockoff. Let’s use a Prada for example.
The logos are everywhere, and they pay special attention to ensure that each logo appears beautiful, crisp, and detailed. On the knock-off in the image below, note the emblem and it’s attachment. The fake bag has an enamel emblem and no obvious indication of how it is fastened to the bag (it appears glued, not sewn and/or riveted). In the real Prada, the logo is leather and metal, and is securely fastened to the bag. Sometimes the emblem is first riveted to a patch, then the patch is stitched to the bag.
Furthermore, take note of the scale and proximity of the words “Prada” and “Milano” to other elements, including the edge of the triangle. Logos need “breathing room” to be effectively conveyed; the fake has all the elements crowded into the triangle and they are as large as they can be.
The Interior Lining
Part of what you pay for in luxury handbags is a beautiful, well-crafted bag outside and inside. Designers pay special attention to the details so you feel like the designer just knows what you’ll need in a bag. Take a look at the tag on the inside as well as the fabric of the lining. Luxury handbags will have the designer name on the outside and the inside.
In the photo above, there is a generic lining in the fake bag along with a blank tag. In the real bag, the lining is an exquisite textile with the designer name everywhere. Not all authentic bags will print the designer name on the inside, but they have absolutely taken special care to how you experience the inside of the bag, whether it’s accordion pockets, calfskin, pen holders, key clasps, or matching zipper pouches.
Now here is where designers really knock it out of the park. Remember the logos we talked about? Designers of authentic luxury bags have paid attention the hardware. Whether it’s Chanel‘s “Lampo” hardware or “Prada” emblazoned on all things metal, rarely do designers leave the hardware bare or run-of-the-mill.
You might see the fake bag’s “hardware” on other types of apparel at a sporting goods store: unmarked plastic zippers. Contrast this simplicity to “Prada” engraved on nearly every single piece of metal.
The “Duh” Moment
Luxury handbags do not have tags on the inside that say, “Made in China.” If anything, they have tags with Date Codes or Authenticity Codes.
Even if your bag has all the characteristics of an authentic bag, there are some really, really good replicas out there–and you might even pay a pretty penny for them! Your best bet is to buy from a reputable retailer, keep your date/authenticity code cards, and know your bags!