Hermes Repair/Refurbish policy - Official Spa Thread

peonies13

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Sep 11, 2019
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Giant caveat- I am NO expert, nor do I purport to be one. But..
This bag makes me think VN, rather than Barenia. Barenia should be way past its "ugly duckling" stage at 17 years, and the coloring and leather just appear too light and "flatter" looking. Marks on the handle should be well blended by now. But photos can be deceiving, so in person, or better photos may give the leather answer.
Regardless ( and even if I'm wrong about the leather and it IS Barenia), stains on the handle and the scratch ( smile mark) are part of the bag, as is the corner wear- they can be blended a bit, but are not going to come out, no matter what leather it is. A great spa-ing or your own conditioning can do wonders, but I think these are part of the bags life at this point.
Good luck and keep us posted.
I'm interested to see what others who know more than me may think.
Thank you @nymeria for the input about the scratches and the "smile mark" being part of the bag at this point. I'd assumed conditioning and patina could make them blend in over time for a more even look (that smile specifically, scratches I care less about) - others have thoughts here?

That said, the leather is a much bigger issue for me. I did think it was a bit light in color but I figured it was both how it was photographed plus if it had basically never been used (i.e. someone used it a few times, damaged it and then got too "scared" to use it more), then perhaps barenia would still look like this? Now that I look at more photos and read older threads I realize I may have fooled myself, I knew it looked light but I was sorta ignoring that in the excitement of finding my HGB. Hoping others can chime in here re VN / barenia. I won't have it in hand until Wednesday so I can't check in person until then.

Can you (or anyone else?) point me to a definitive-ish - or as much as can be determined - way to know if it's VN or barenia? Other than color and hand, is there some more tried-and-true way to tell? I am 1000% returning if it's VN, it being barenia is the only reason I paid a premium for the bag because of the way it ages/patinas over time, how it absorbs marks etc.
 
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FreddieMac

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Jul 3, 2017
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I'm afraid to say this bag is very very unlikely to be Barenia, and like Nymeria suggested, struck me as a VN bag straight away. A very different, although equally fun 'natural' leather.

Big caveat, unlike Barenia, VN does not take kindly to liquids and will stain, which is what the handles seem to be exhibiting.

Edited to add - whilst photos can naturally be deceiving, the colour of this bag is far too light/unsaturated to be Barenia, which is always more caramel in colouring, even when new, much more akin to Gold and what most would associate with the colour of saddle leather.
 

880

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Aug 31, 2008
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The preloved universe shined on me! After finding no barenia bags for what seems like forever, more than one came my way just this week. A few days ago I posted about a barenia preloved B35 with an ink stain and decided to pass on that bag full well knowing that the next right barenia bag may take a long time to find (I’ve been on the hunt for years already). And then what do you know, one that looks much better cared for popped up in the middle of the night and I grabbed it!!

Only now I am thinking of the specific issues of this bag.

There are small moisture (oil?) marks on the handles as well as corner scratches, oddly warped/bent sangles, and a big semicircular mark (assuming from a hanging lock). Barenia / spa experienced friends, do you think these be fixed by the spa? The semicircular mark and moisture/oil marks are the two that really bug me. Could the marks be taken out by a technician, or could they blend in with patina?

Second question: this bag is 17yrs old but seems to still be in the “ugly duckling” patina-less phase. Hoping I could ask spa to also condition or balm it to hasten a beautiful patina along? Can this be requested, and if so what is the service called to condition/darken the leather?


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Vache naturelle, which IMO is highly sought after and more rare these days. It’s one of the original saddle leathers from 1800s. But, definitely NOT as forgiving as Barenia. It will show every mark and that is part of its charm.

VN marks very easily unless treated as per docride from the beginning which can create a glorious honey patina (still very different from Barenia. In appearance patinated, in my uneducated laypersons opinion, simply on aesthetics, VN is in between patinated barenia and box

You could ask docride on her Lazarus thread, but hallmarks of VN include resin etc.

ETA: agree with above @nymeria and @FreddieMac
 
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Jan 15, 2011
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Thank you @nymeria for the input about the scratches and the "smile mark" being part of the bag at this point. I'd assumed conditioning and patina could make them blend in over time for a more even look (that smile specifically, scratches I care less about) - others have thoughts here?

That said, the leather is a much bigger issue for me. I did think it was a bit light in color but I figured it was both how it was photographed plus if it had basically never been used (i.e. someone used it a few times, damaged it and then got too "scared" to use it more), then perhaps barenia would still look like this? Now that I look at more photos and read older threads I realize I may have fooled myself, I knew it looked light but I was sorta ignoring that in the excitement of finding my HGB. Hoping others can chime in here re VN / barenia. I won't have it in hand until Wednesday so I can't check in person until then.

Can you (or anyone else?) point me to a definitive-ish - or as much as can be determined - way to know if it's VN or barenia? Other than color and hand, is there some more tried-and-true way to tell? I am 1000% returning if it's VN, it being barenia is the only reason I paid a premium for the bag because of the way it ages/patinas over time, how it absorbs marks etc.
I wish Barenia for you....but this is what "new" Barenia looks like (this is my B35 in its first six months, although it still looks much like this). I am afraid your bag is VN. Wishing much Barenia your way :heart:

BCA33505-330B-43ED-884F-20307897F25A 2.JPEG
 

peonies13

Member
Sep 11, 2019
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@FreddieMac @880 @maryg1 @QuelleFromage @nymeria I'm so grateful to you all for making me look at this with a more critical eye up front! I couldn't put my finger on why the light color seemed off when I made the purchase - I chalked it up to being photographed badly - it was the middle of the night and I was just so excited at the prospect of finding my HGB. You all saved me a lot of heartache to know it's not what I want now vs finding it out later on. Obviously I'm a little heartbroken to know my HGB is actually not my HGB but the multi-year search continues! If anyone has tips on where/how to find a vintage barenia HAC or B please let me know, I check all of the regular online haunts daily.
 

MissIn

Member
Jul 11, 2013
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Wow she’s gorgeous :girlsigh: and love the beautiful arch of the handle. Thank you for sharing your experience, as it definitely helps when the time comes to make the choice! May I ask how long the entire process took?
Thank you @kohl_mascara :heart: The process was faster than expected! Here is the exact timeline:
Dec 12/2020 brought bag to my local store
March 26/2021 received quote and recommendations from Paris artisan
March 29/2021 I gave the green light on recommendations
July 21/2021 repaired BBK ready for pickup at my local store

Excited to see how your bag turns out~:happydance:
 
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FreddieMac

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fonnas

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Thank you @nymeria for the input about the scratches and the "smile mark" being part of the bag at this point. I'd assumed conditioning and patina could make them blend in over time for a more even look (that smile specifically, scratches I care less about) - others have thoughts here?

That said, the leather is a much bigger issue for me. I did think it was a bit light in color but I figured it was both how it was photographed plus if it had basically never been used (i.e. someone used it a few times, damaged it and then got too "scared" to use it more), then perhaps barenia would still look like this? Now that I look at more photos and read older threads I realize I may have fooled myself, I knew it looked light but I was sorta ignoring that in the excitement of finding my HGB. Hoping others can chime in here re VN / barenia. I won't have it in hand until Wednesday so I can't check in person until then.

Can you (or anyone else?) point me to a definitive-ish - or as much as can be determined - way to know if it's VN or barenia? Other than color and hand, is there some more tried-and-true way to tell? I am 1000% returning if it's VN, it being barenia is the only reason I paid a premium for the bag because of the way it ages/patinas over time, how it absorbs marks etc.

This is 1 Million % VN. Think of VN like Vachetta leather on Louis Vuitton. Every single drop of water, oil, etc will stain and show unless treated from the gecko and maintained over time.

The last time I saw a Barenia was 2-3 months ago on fashionphile it was a B35. Good luck with your hunt.
 
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EmilyM111

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Oct 24, 2015
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Apologies if this question has been asked (tried to find, nothing). Would dropping a bag directly to Paris store speed up the turnaround time? I'm 3hrs train away and it's always amazing to visit Paris anyway. Also, do I need have an SA in FSH or just drop to any person that will be willing to talk to me? Thanks in advance
 
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Apologies if this question has been asked (tried to find, nothing). Would dropping a bag directly to Paris store speed up the turnaround time? I'm 3hrs train away and it's always amazing to visit Paris anyway. Also, do I need have an SA in FSH or just drop to any person that will be willing to talk to me? Thanks in advance
You can ask for directions and go straight to SAV/ service après vente (upstairs, take a left at fine jewellery, after the rocking horse) no need for an appointment or an SA. All my bags are mostly sent in at FSH and I now know 2 of the SAs at SAV, except one repair in London when they had an in-house craftslady. I can't really say if it's faster, the counter person will give you a time estimate and answer all your questions.
 

EmilyM111

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Oct 24, 2015
1,208
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You can ask for directions and go straight to SAV/ service après vente (upstairs, take a left at fine jewellery, after the rocking horse) no need for an appointment or an SA. All my bags are mostly sent in at FSH and I now know 2 of the SAs at SAV, except one repair in London when they had an in-house craftslady. I can't really say if it's faster, the counter person will give you a time estimate and answer all your questions.
Thank you, super helpful! I might just go regardless whether it's faster or not :smile:
 
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