A black niloticus crocodile Hermès Birkin bag sold at over double its estimate at Christies earlier this week, with a final auction bid of £162,500. This price matches the European record for handbags sold at auction – a similar crocodile Hermès Birkin bag from 2008 broke the record at an auction last year.
The auction included 243 lots totaling £3.4m. Bidders participating in the auction represented 41 countries across six continents. The sale featured the largest number of designers to date including Prada, Dior, Gucci, Delvaux, Celine, Fendi, and trunk shows from Louis Vuitton and Goyard.
Chanel items by the late designer Karl Lagerfeld, who died in February, were particularly popular. A rocket ship evening bag made from black Lucite and crystal smashed its estimate of £6,000 – £8,000 and sold for £21,250.
Rachel Koffsky, Christies’ head of sales for handbags and accessories said: “As awareness grows regarding the variety of pieces on the secondary market, as well as the breadth of price points, the benefits of collecting at auction become apparent. This is coupled with the awareness of sustainability, as consumers look for ways to collect and shop with a reduced impact on the environment. Limited edition and rare handbags continue to capture the attention of serious collectors and savvy shoppers alike.”