Why are Designer Handbags So Expensive? 6 Simple Reasons

To fashion fiends everywhere, the brand name handbag is the status equivalent of wearing a Rolex timepiece or driving the Italian Ferrari sports car.

A mouth-watering combination of whimsical excess, chic details, and unquestionable luxury, the expensive designer handbag is a woman’s ultimate confidence booster.

For the fortunate wearer of lavishly styled arm candy, a designer bag screams to the world, you are the best.

Have you ever wondered what’s behind the brand name handbag’s huge price tags?

Is it worth saving your hard-earned dollars for another season’s expensive fashionable trinket? From designer handbag history to celebrity cache, here are 6 things every woman needs to know before buying the dream “it bag.”

why are designer handbags so expensive

Designer Brand Name Matters

Both designers may use a big H as a logo, but Hermes is undoubtedly not Hilfiger.

Dear brand name handbag lovers: you get what you pay for…

Sorry Hilfiger,(I love you, Tommy. I really do.) but Hermes’ 100 years of craftsmanship and handmade quality trumps plastic, pleather, and assembly-line construction any day.

A Hermes Birkin handbag is expensive because of the reputation of the design house and its legendary dedication to craftsmanship and quality.

The Birkin is a designer bag that holds its value over time; women patiently wait years on lists to receive a special order Birkin bag which can cost upwards of 100,000 dollars. (yeah, that’s a lot of zeros!)

Iconic Designer Handbag Status

Gucci Soho Large Leather Chain Shoulder Handbag Black BHFO 5480Influence by the Designer Style Trinity raises the cost of a bag tremendously.

If the grand dames of the designer handbag trinity: Grace Kelly, Jane Birkin, and Jacqueline Onassis carried it; women want it.  But these three names affiliated with brand name handbags do not come cheap.

As muses for legendary fashion houses Hermes and Gucci the relationship between the icon’s historic style and the design house’s royal reputation increases the public’s thirst for the items.

Symbols of everlasting elegance and glamour, attach these three legendary names to the origin and design of a bag and voila; everybody and anybody must have it. High demand + legendary glamour = high price.

Handbags are a Historic Accessory of the Elite

Saint Laurent Women's Cabas Rive Gauche Bag, Red, SmallBecause bag snobbery is not a new phenomenon.

Luxury brands like Cartier, Hermes and Louis Vuitton were founded to serve the French royal court in the 18th and 19th centuries.

Fashion house artisans spent hours designing these objects of art for aristocrats, and in later years exclusively for notable American families.

Unlike today’s trendy it-bag often banished to purse purgatory at the end of a season, designer handbags of the past were considered lifelong companions; accessories for royals and family heirlooms for the well-to-do.

Created for the wealthy European elite, these leather goods reeked of sophistication and elitism while the strict attention to detail justified the high cost.

Designer Brand Name Handbags Have the Best Materials

Salvatore Ferragamo Women's The Gancini Studio Tote, Beige/Nero, Black, Print, One SizeSuperior items cost more to produce.

Legendary craftsmanship makes the designer difference. Ornate clasps and rings crafted from palladium and gold. Zippers than never stick mixed with hardware that never tarnishes.

Combine premium leathers, suedes and exotic animal skins with the legendary artisanship of the designer bag emporiums, and you’ve got a recipe for a luxury big-ticket item.

The video below shows the making of a Salvatore Ferragamo bag — which is a masterpiece of craftsmanship.

Limited Edition Handbag Status

Celebrate a fashion house’s anniversary with a new bag.

Prada Vitello Phenix Black Leather Shopping Tote Handbag 1BG043When Gucci celebrated its 85th anniversary in 2006, it’s creative director Frida Giannini reworked the classic hobo shape for designer bag lovers. The bags were only sold in Gucci stores from July through December of 2006 and were priced in the $4,500 range.

Sales associates were quickly selling these designer bags to women collectors regardless of cost. Labeling bags limited edition is a branding tactic that is frequently used to send designer bag aficionados into a bag feeding frenzy.

You now understand why a designer handbag is so expensive. With the information above you can shop for a designer brand name handbag with the Andre Leon Talleys and Nina Garcias of the world with complete confidence.

Here are Some of Our Favorite Designer Handbags

Also, check out the following resources for more information concerning the rising costs of designer handbags:

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