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How to spot a fake Chanel Bag.

Cheap designer bags - Chanel?

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“The best things in life are free,
the second best are expensive”
Said Coco Chanel, the original founder of The House of Chanel established in Paris in 1903.

Chanel bags are arguably the best in the world. They command high prices which start from £1300 for the most basic bag, and can rise to tens of thousands of pounds depending on which model you are looking at:

If you have to ask the price you probably cannot afford it, as the
saying goes, and the sordid subject of money is certainly never
raised on their website.

How to Spot a Chanel handbag.

Many people who want genuine Chanel have never actually seen a real Chanel bag , let alone owned one , but still the allure and sophistication of the brand make them a “must have “ item for many people. This makes Chanel goods a hot target for counterfeiters. So it is hardly surprising that fakes and replicas are widespread.

Cut price fake Chanel goods, mostly originating from China and the Far East have flooded the Global market and in some cases are being bought and passed off as being genuine. There is a huge discrepancy in prices. For example, the classic 255 quilted bag on sale today from Selfridges London for £1300 is being advertised for just £95 from one supposedly genuine Chanel retailer based in the UK. It just doesn’t add up.

Authenticity the bags do not come from China

Genuine new Chanel bags are only ever available from Chanel boutiques, sometimes located within prestigious department stores such as Harrods in London or Saks in New York. Real Chanel handbags are never available from online businesses selling off surplus stock and Chanel destroy all imperfect “seconds” themselves. In short, there is no such thing as a genuine new Chanel bag being sold cheap!

How to buy a genuine Chanel Bag

Buying a second hand Chanel bag can be a minefield. The seller may seem to have a perfectly valid reason for the sale, and it is tempting to assume that they may not know the true value themselves enabling you to pick the bag up for a fraction of the price. This is unlikely but possible, so it is important that you do some research and homework first.
Here is a quick guide to identifying fake Chanel bags. Be warned, some counterfeit Chanel bags are very convincing.

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The Material on a Chanel Bag

When looking for a certain bag it is useful to know which material the particular bag should be made of. Fakes are often made from different materials to those originally used by Chanel and this knowledge can be the first clue to spotting a counterfeit. Chanel use many different materials for their bags but lambskin, calfskin and caviar leather are among their most popular leathers.

Chanel also make non-leather bags from materials such as tweed or vinyl so if you spot a bag originally made in vinyl, now in patent leather it is obviously not genuine, however good it looks.

The Stitching on a Chanel Bag

All the stitching should be neat and straight and have a high stitch to inch ratio. Bags vary, but a genuine Chanel bag should have at least 10 stitches per inch whereas a fake may have only 6. Bags with stitched design such as the classic quilted bag should be perfect and there should be no break in the pattern for pockets or other features. Again check the stitch count and examine the quality of the work.

The Logo on a Chanel Bag

The Chanel logo is made up of two interlocking letter Cs often stitched into the leather. The right facing letter C should overlap the left facing letter C. If the logo is in metal the same rule applies - the right hand C always overlaps the wrong facing left hand C. If it doesn’t, it is a fake.

The Authenticity Card on a Chanel Bag

There should be an authenticity card with the bag. This is an embossed black card with crisp gold lettering and trim and it should display a serial number. It will not have fuzzy printing or spelling mistakes as fakes sometimes do. The design of this authenticity card has not changed in the last 25 years so any other type of booklet or authenticity card is a fake, however convincing it may look.

The Serial Number on a Chanel Bag

            shoulder bags Serial Numbers
Example of 10218184 a
Known fake serial Number
on a Chanel replica bag

The serial number on the card should match the serial number inside the bag. There is always a serial number sticker inside a genuine Chanel bag. It may not be easy to find because it is often tucked away, perhaps in a pocket or under a zip. By contrast the serial number in a fake bag is usually put in a very noticeable position.

The genuine Chanel serial number is printed on a hologram sticker, encased in plastic and attached to the bag. This should be impossible to remove without breaking the sticker. If the sticker can be removed in one piece the bag is certainly a fake.

 There are several known fake serial numbers - 9395451 is commonly used, but also 7244764, 8947749, 9316391, 9395451, 9395455, 9675223, 9777617, 9889754, 9892039, 10218184, 10380486, 10501946, 10803549 10995820, and 11062948. Beware; if a bag carries any of these numbers then it could be a fake.

The Zip and Metal Parts on a Chanel Bag

The zip should have the Chanel logo engraved on one side and the word Chanel engraved on the other. The engraving should be at least one millimetre thick. Buttons on the bag should have either the logo or the word Chanel engraved, you should find the Chanel logo or the word Chanel engraved into the metal elsewhere on the other metal parts of the bag, such as on the chain of the handle.


Finally, if a seller offers you written authentication purporting to come from Chanel, walk away because Chanel never give written verifications of authenticity. And if you are buying from the Internet at a price too good to be true, then it probably is!


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