Belfast Telegraph

Hermes Birkin bag sets world record

A Hermès Birkin bag has set a world record after selling for $203,150.

The accessory was on offer at an auction in Dallas, Texas.

Officially called a Hermès Exceptional Collection Shiny Rouge H Porosus Crocodile Birkin Bag, the carry case measures 30cm and boasts white gold and diamond detailing.

The new owner won the bid on December 6 but has asked not to be identified.

"This is an extraordinary example of one of the world's most exceptional handbags, and this was certainly an exceptional price, exceeding our highest expectations at every corner," director of luxury accessories at Heritage Auctions Matt Rubinger told WWD.

Several other Birkin bags by the prestigious company also fetched a high price at the auction. Two 35cm versions sold for $113,525 and $96,600 a piece, while a third 30cm bag received a bid of $80,663.

The Birkin bag was created in 1984, in honour of actress-and-singer Jane Birkin. She had set next to Hermès chief executive Jean-Louis Dumas on a flight and bemoaned how hard it was to find a good quality leather carry case.

Jane has had a lengthy career and does a lot of work for charity, but knows most people only know her because of her links to the fashion industry.

"No, [it's not a challenge] at all, I got Hermès to fork out for my charities once I saw the fortune they were making. A certain amount of money every year goes straight to my charity and it will continue to after my death," she told WWD. "This year I was able to [use some of that money] to go to Japan for a benefit concert after the earthquake. We use some of the money to feed the poor people who can't afford to eat in France. I sold one of my Birkin bags for $163,000 to help the Japanese Red Cross. So that rather trivial piece of heavy luggage has done a lot of good in the world."

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