BRIEF HISTORY OF GUCCI
When Guccio Gucci, the founder of the Gucci brand, moved from Paris to London in 1897 to work as a bellhop at the Savoy Hotel, he had firsthand experience with the wealthy’s tastes in fashion, fabrics, luggage quality, and traveling conditions. Then, when he worked at a European rail company that specialized in upscale travel, he learned even more about luggage and the luxurious traveling lifestyles of the rich and famous.
After World War I, Gucci worked for Franzi, a maker of fine luggage, and that’s where he fine-tuned his skills in the industry. Armed with everything he’d learned about travel, luggage, fabrics, and leather goods, Gucci bought his first shop in Florence, Italy in 1921 and created a leather goods and luggage store. He also opened a small workshop so he could hire a local craftsman to make his leather goods, but as his staff grew, he outgrew the workshop and purchased a larger one. Gucci made a name for himself amongst the local horse-riding aristocrats and their demands for leather riding gear inspired Guccio to incorporate equestrian imagery, like the Horsebit, in his designs.
At the start of World War II, sanctions were put in place that limited the materials used for goods, so Gucci improvised and began designing handbags and luggage in raffia, wood, cotton canvas, jute, and hemp which are still used today. During this time, Gucci also developed a new leather tanning technique called “cuoio grasso” and created the GG Rombi Motif which became and still is their trademark today.
In 1937, Gucci launched handbags and in 1938, Guccio’s son Aldo convinced his father to open up a shop in Rome where they created and sold additional accessories such as gloves, belts, wallets, and keychains. Gucci’s bags, while crafted of cotton canvas, were distinguished by the GG symbol with the red and green signature stripe. After the war, the Gucci crest became synonymous with the city of Florence.
“Quality is remembered long after price is forgotten.”
In 1947, the Gucci Bamboo Bag was created, followed by the iconic Gucci Loafers. Sadly, as the Gucci empire continued to grow and open shops in the US and Milan, Guccio Gucci passed away in 1953.
GUCCI’S INVESTMENT BAGS
Gucci has been producing some of the world’s most exquisite, time-honored trunks and handbags since the late 19th century. And while trends come and go, many Gucci handbags have stood the test of time and retain the best secondhand value. But what if you’re unsure whether the bag you’re about to purchase is the real deal? We’re here to help.
One of the first and most obvious ways to judge whether your bag is the real deal is by checking the GG logo. The two uppercase Gs should be thin at the top, have a thicker middle, and of course both Gs should overlap. If the logo is too thin or too shiny, you probably have found a fake. With the signature monogram, the logo and design should be consistent throughout the whole bag so if you notice oddly sized or lowercased Gs, the bag is probably a fake.
Another telltale sign is the stitching and if it’s crooked, uneven or irregular, you may have a fake Gucci bag on your hands. A real Gucci handbag’s stitching is consistent and even, without loose threads. The stitching for the quilted patterns (such as chevron) are spaced in a particular way and should be the same throughout.
The GG logo stitch pattern that’s found on bags like the Soho are very difficult for even the best replicate and should also be closely examined.
Gucci has created some of the world’s most popular and instantly recognizable designer items thanks to its leathers, fabrics and logo hardware. And while the shape and design of a Gucci item speaks volumes, their use of exotic skins, brilliant colors, exclusive fabrics, and of course the iconic GG pattern leaves fans speechless, and that’s why the quality of the leathers and materials is so important.
Whether you’re shopping for yourself or a gift, just remember that real leather will eventually stretch out and lose its shape. This means it’ll also patina and feature an irregular finish. The bag should feel smooth to the touch and have a naturally musky, leathery smell. If the bag feels like plastic, is too stiff or too flimsy, and has a chemical-like smell, you should question the authenticity.
All the hardware on an authentic Gucci bag is made of the highest quality materials, and therefore should be solid and heavy. The hardware should be placed evenly and stamped with Gucci’s logos and fonts. Look out for rusted, chipped hardware and incorrect spacing and fonts. The zipper should also be straight and open and close with ease.
GUCCI’S SERIAL NUMBERS
Inside the bag you’ll find a leather tag that features the “Gucci”, “made in Italy” and the registered trademark. Pay attention to the font, spacing, spelling and positioning. If you’re not sure, do a quick search online.
The serial number is another telltale sign of a fake versus a real. Located on the inside of the bag and on the back side of the leather Gucci tag, the serial number is heat-stamped into the leather and consists of two rows of around 10 to 13 numbers.
The top number is the style number, and the bottom is the supplier code. This means you can search for the number to make sure it corresponds to the item you purchased. If you purchased a shoulder bag and the number pulled up a belt, you’ve got a problem! And obviously if the stamp is crooked, messy or difficult to read, or doesn’t have the aforementioned qualities, drop it like it’s hot.
Content and images for this blog post have been referenced form LePrix