In 1983, the husband of the English actress and singer, Jane Birkin, deliberately ran over her woven bag with his car. Tumultuous relationship aside, this began an encounter that would lead to a handbag revolution.
With this damaged bag, Ms. Birkin took a flight and found herself seated next to Jean-Louis Dumas, the jovially-faced CEO of Hermès, a company founded by his great-grandfather in 1837.
It is commonly said that at some point during the flight, the contents of the damaged and frayed bag came cascading onto the floor. This began a conversation between the pair about the perfect handbag and the rest, they say, is history.
34 years later, the Birkin bag is one of the most recognisable in the world, primarily because of its beautiful craftsmanship. It’s said that one bag takes over 48 working hours to complete, through the hands of a single artisan.
This means that no two bags will be the same, and particularly so given that every artisan has their own set of tools at all times. They take this commitment so seriously, that they even retire with that very same individual set of tools. Moreover, it is not a role that is filled by many, the artisans are trained for three to four years before being permitted to craft a bag of their own.
The skill and individuality of each artisan is so apparent in the bag, that is is often said if they were shown a row, they could pick out the one made by their hand.
Not only is the artisan world-class, but so are the materials they are crafting. Only the top 10% of the leather seen by Hermès is ever used for the bags.
This craftsmanship isn’t only reflected in the item itself, but also its value. Over the last 35 years, the value of a Birkin bag has increased more than the S&P500 and the gold value. This means that the craftsmanship of a Birkin is not only recognised now, but will stand the test of time for many years into the future.
In just the same way that the materials and craft of the Birkin are exclusive, so are those able to acquire one. In a world where everything is quicker, less personal, less detailed – the Birkin shines through.
It is a lighthouse on the rocks, keeping the ideas of individuality and exclusivity alive.
So exclusive is it in fact, that the waiting list can be as long as six years to acquire one. It is not sold online by Hermès, but rather, select boutiques get them as and when they are made. Once again, even in availability, the Birkin answers to no one.
And you can too.
Cudoni currently have one Birkin bag available, it is a new 35cm Bleu de Galice with gold hardware, still in its original packaging. If you would like to acquire one of the world’s finest handbags, without waiting six years, enquire and hear more by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org, or calling 0203 823 6093.