Along with Chanel and Gucci, Louis Vuitton is probably the most counterfeited luxury handbag out there. From quality that ranges from street vendor plastic looking styles, to genuine leather copies, it can be fairly difficult to know what to look at to be able to spot a fake designer bag.
Although it takes years to perfect this craft, and highly regarded authenticators have seen thousands of bags pass before their eyes; there are ways –albeit not as accurate - to determine the authenticity of a bag right from home.
Below, we have compiled the first 4 steps you should take to begin to determine the authenticity of your new Louis Vuitton bag.
Know your sources
Making sure your bag is coming from an authorized LV vendor, or a reputable pre-loved company is step one. By purchasing your item from a respectable brand, you are basically assured that the authentication has already been done for you. Luxury handbag shops rely on their reputation of selling real items to keep the business flowing, one claim of someone having bought a fake bag at their store can jeopardize their standing as a trustworthy name. Furthermore, lots of these store have already done the leg work of finding a copy of the proof of purchase and - for brands that have it – have even found the authenticity card.
Know your bag
Is the original bag coated canvas or leather? Does it have leather trimming? Where are the pockets supposed to be? What pattern is on the inner lining? Are there inner pockets to the bag? Make sure you research what the original bag looks like in detail before purchasing it. Go to the Louis Vuitton store, Google pictures of every angle of the bag, or check with a friend who already owns one.
This will ensure you are as familiar with the bag as possible, and will make it harder to dupe you if someone is trying to sell you a fake designer bag. That being said, always take into account that the design of the bag might have had some tweaking recently, so trust your sales associates knowledge if you know the store is a reputable one.
Know your details
Falling in line with the step above; make sure you know the general details all LV bags have in common. Louis Vuitton is known for its superior quality, so any handbag with crooked stitching or with a plastic-like feel to the material is probably counterfeit. Zippers should be made out of brass or gold metal, not colored plastic, and the LV imprint on the hardware should be clearly legible at a quick glance.
Another important category in this step in the Louis Vuitton logo stamp. Although it’s not obvious, there are certain details that are surprisingly hard to copy:
- The foot of the “L” is very short, most copies do not replicate this correctly.
- The “O” are round and wide, and appear bigger than the “L” next to it.
- Both “T” are almost touching each other, or are so close that appears as if they were.
- The very specific LV font is thin, clear, and easily legible.
Know your date codes
Louis Vuitton is one of the few brands whose products do not have serial numbers or authentication cards, instead the company brands their products with “date codes”. These codes are stamped on leather tags that are later attached to the interior of the bag, or directly onto the lining. With this code, and knowledge on how to read it, it’s easy to tell where that specific LV bag was made as well as the date.
The trick here is to ensure that the country of origin on the code matches the “Made In” stamp on the bag, a point which the majority of counterfeiters don’t bother to do. If for example, a bag’s date code is MI2007 and the Made In stamp says Italy, we can tell that the bag is fake since MI is the code for France and not Italy. Take a look at the chart below for detailed information on the LV codes:
- Made in France = A0, A1, A2, AA, AAS, AH, AN, AR, AS, BA, BJ, BU, DR, DU, CO, CT, ET, FL, LW, MB, MI, NO, RA, RI, SD, SF, SL, SN, SP, SR, TJ, TH, TR, TS, VI, VX
- Made in Italy = BC, BO, CE, FO, MA, RC, RE, SA, TD
- Made in Spain = CA, GI, LO, LB, LM, LW
- •Made in U.S.A. = FC, FH, FL, LA, OS, SD
- •Made in Switzerland = DI, FA
- Made in Germany = LP
If all else fails, here at Beccasbags we’re always happy to take a look at your luxury items. For any inquires please contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org