$203,150 purse: Hermes bag sells for what?!

$203,150 purse: A handbag sold at a Dallas auction was the most expensive ever sold. An anonymous collector bought the $203,150 purse, a red crocodile Hermes Birkin bag.

  • close
    This product image provided by Heritage Auctions shows an Hermès Diamond Birkin handbag that sold for $203,525 in an auction in Dallas. Heritage spokesman Noah Fleisher said the bag, made of crocodile hide and featuring 18-karat white gold, diamond-encrusted hardware, went to a collector who wished to remain anonymous.
    View Caption
  • About video ads
    View Caption
of

File this one under, “what lousy economy?” Earlier this week, an anonymous collector shelled out $203,150 for a purse.

Sold at the Heritage Auction house in Dallas, the purse is a Red Hermès crocodile Birkin-style handbag, with "hardware" – that is, the buckles, clasps and so on – made from solid 18-karat white gold and diamonds.  The 30 cm tote is a world record setter for the most expensive purse ever sold at a public auction.

If any bag was going to hold such a record, it was bound to be a Hermès Birkin.  Since its creation in 1984, the bag has been the ultimate symbol of lavish spending, luxury fashion, and exclusivity. Hermès, a high-end fashion brand, manufactures all of their leather goods by hand; the company boasts that each item is constructed start to finish by the same leather craftsman. One bag may take between 18 and 24 hours to produce.

There used to be a six-year waiting list for a Birkin, but it was cleared in 2010, ostensibly making the bag available to anyone who could afford it. Depending on materials used, Birkin bags can cost anywhere between $9,000 and $150,000.

The mind-boggling price of the Heritage auction bag owes to its construction materials: crocodile leather, 18-karat gold, and diamonds. According to a spokesman for Heritage Auction house, the bag was expected to go for much less – about $80,000.  Two other crocodile Birkin bags were sold at the same auction, for $113,525 and $95,600.

The purses are collectors items, so don’t expect to spot them hauling around cell phones and car keys anytime soon.  

Share this story:

We want to hear, did we miss an angle we should have covered? Should we come back to this topic? Or just give us a rating for this story. We want to hear from you.

Loading...

Loading...

Loading...

Save for later

Save
Cancel

Saved ( of items)

This item has been saved to read later from any device.
Access saved items through your user name at the top of the page.

View Saved Items

OK

Failed to save

You reached the limit of 20 saved items.
Please visit following link to manage you saved items.

View Saved Items

OK

Failed to save

You have already saved this item.

View Saved Items

OK