Purchased a Fake Céline Classic Box from a Legitimate Business

JJJ.

Member
May 20, 2020
52
452
I wanted to share my story here so that others don't have to go through the same hassle/trouble. I have always put off getting the Céline/Celine Classic Box bag in Camel (all time classic color) but now that the old logo is getting harder to find being 2 years since the change, I finally decided to go for it. I happened upon *******, a luxury handbag store based in Australia. I trusted their reputation because they have several physical stores and one store is on "The Rocks" which is why they can price their handbags under retail. That plus they have a story about buying bags off season in Europe to resell but they are all authentic with Entrupy Certification. All of this put me at ease to purchase through them directly off their website and on top of that their pricing was really good at $4425 AUD.

The shipping was quick and when I opened the box, I noticed a strange smell on the leather of the bag. Everything looked "normal" -- tags attached, dust bags included, and the hardware still had plastic wrap. The bag did come in a generic box though. I inspected the bag and the biggest red flag was the stitching. I immediately contacted their customer service and initiated a refund because of the stitching defect (at the time I thought this bag was priced less because of its defect and that the shop sells bags that never made it through QA). Return was easy and my money was refunded without a problem.

The search continued for me and I contacted two different Celine boutiques and luckily one of them had the classic box in camel with the old Celine logo in stock. Even though I would be paying retail, the peace of mind is worth it. The bag just arrived today and I compared the authentic bag with the photos of the bag from ******* that I took. I had an inkling the ******* bag could be a super fake but now I am positive it was. I have attached photos of the major differences I noticed. I'm just really confused as to how a boutique that operates like a legitimate business could be selling a fake. I'm not sure if they are intentionally selling a fake bag or if the buyer for the shop didn't inspect their product well enough.

I just hope that my experience prevents some of you from paying the real price for a fake bag. I was never able to find any information about ******* on purseforum so maybe this could've been a one-off thing. I just know that I won't ever feel comfortable to purchase with them again.

*It looks like this store name is being asterisked out automatically when I preview my post. I'm not sure why but to be a bit clearer, it's 7 letters and the store name starts with a C and ends with ETTE.*

Celine Clasp.png

Celine Logo.png

Celine Made In Italy.png

Celine Stitching.png

Celine Zipper Tag.png
 

JenJBS

Member
Sep 22, 2019
6,765
27,271
Wonder if they sold a prior customer an authentic bag, but the customer returned a fake - which was then unknowingly sold to you. It's extremely rare, but has happened. Only suggesting it as one possible explanation, since you said they are reputable.
 

a-s

Member
May 3, 2020
63
204
A youtuber who used to work with this store addressed this. Apparently they don’t actually authenticate every item but instead inspect a sample from each batch/shipment so the entrupy certificate is for the entire batch not your bag specifically. I guess this authentication process leaves possibility for fakes to slip by.
 

JJJ.

Member
May 20, 2020
52
452
Wonder if they sold a prior customer an authentic bag, but the customer returned a fake - which was then unknowingly sold to you. It's extremely rare, but has happened. Only suggesting it as one possible explanation, since you said they are reputable.
I never thought of that. Maybe that could have happened but then if you see my zipper tag image, theres a black string tag with one of those "if this tag is removed, the item can't be returned". If it was switched out, that would mean the tag was also re-attached somehow? This definitely scared me into just purchasing with authorized retailers from now on. I've been able to spot so many fake Celine on RealReal/Vestiaire Collective (that eventually do sell for authentic price) so I'm just amazed with how good these fakes have gotten to make it pass inspection. :sad:
 

JJJ.

Member
May 20, 2020
52
452
A youtuber who used to work with this store addressed this. Apparently they don’t actually authenticate every item but instead inspect a sample from each batch/shipment so the entrupy certificate is for the entire batch not your bag specifically. I guess this authentication process leaves possibility for fakes to slip by.
That's probably true. I tried to do my research before purchasing but didn't come across the Youtube video (wish I had). I tried to find something on Purseforum but now I realize that nothing came up on here because the store name is automatically asterisked out/hidden.
 

JenJBS

Member
Sep 22, 2019
6,765
27,271
I never thought of that. Maybe that could have happened but then if you see my zipper tag image, theres a black string tag with one of those "if this tag is removed, the item can't be returned". If it was switched out, that would mean the tag was also re-attached somehow? This definitely scared me into just purchasing with authorized retailers from now on. I've been able to spot so many fake Celine on RealReal/Vestiaire Collective (that eventually do sell for authentic price) so I'm just amazed with how good these fakes have gotten to make it pass inspection. :sad:
Oh. Hadn't realized that's what the tag said. Yeah, the eliminates the idea of someone returning a fake. It is scary how good the fakes are. Glad you saw the problems and ended up with an authentic bag.
 
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IntheOcean

Authenticator
Apr 4, 2018
3,756
4,155
They've been known to sell a mix of fake and authentic items for years. There's been quite a lot of discussion of this topic here on the forum, but I suppose you won't be able to find it now with the asterisks instead of letters. Anywho, there have been several cases of people purchasing Prada bags over the past few years who then got them authenticated either here or by a paid service, and they were deemed fake. It wasn't just one brand, naturally. I don't believe for a second they didn't know what they were selling.

I've stopped watching Mel, one of the biggest Youtubers from Australia, when she started working with them despite their reputation.

ETA: the name of the company is replaced with asterisks because apparently, they've been accusing this forum of 'slandering' when they were first caught with selling fakes years ago.
 
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eckw

Member
Feb 28, 2015
1,620
4,104
Celine has some scary super fakes out there. You took some great comparison pics and even side-by-side the differences are not easy to tell straight off.

A friend once brought her super fake Celine trifold to a dinner at my place and we compared it to my genuine one (mine from boutique). It was really hard to tell and the giveaway signs were similar to yours (except no stitching prob) Also I noticed her fake Celine zippers were more of a brighter gold than mine (my hw was more muted in color).

I lusted over the natural tan Celine medium box bag for a long time but held off as I was waiting for the H Constance 24 in gold. When my H SA finally offered me the C24, I found the style didn’t work as well for me as the Celine box. By then Phoebe had left so I had the choice of getting the new version from store or old-version via reseller. I was too scared of super fakes plus I only wanted it in the natural tan (super delicate leather known to have scuffs even in store) so wanted to inspect before buying. I looked over 4 bags from my Celine SA before finding one that was ok for me.

Btw C**** had a very dodgy rap even before MelfromMelbourne worked with them. And she did this super long post afterwards regretting her decision that I felt bad for her. (To be honest I was surprised she chose to work from them to start with. I know very little about resellers and the C**** name rang alarm bells when I saw her first post.)
 
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Antigone

O.G.
Sep 12, 2006
2,737
2,927
I remember this store had several posts about them here because of the same issue. You probably can still find them.
 
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JJJ.

Member
May 20, 2020
52
452
They've been known to sell a mix of fake and authentic items for years. There's been quite a lot of discussion of this topic here on the forum, but I suppose you won't be able to find it now with the asterisks instead of letters. Anywho, there have been several cases of people purchasing Prada bags over the past few years who then got them authenticated either here or by a paid service, and they were deemed fake. It wasn't just one brand, naturally. I don't believe for a second they didn't know what they were selling.

I've stopped watching Mel, one of the biggest Youtubers from Australia, when she started working with them despite their reputation.

ETA: the name of the company is replaced with asterisks because apparently, they've been accusing this forum of 'slandering' when they were first caught with selling fakes years ago.
That is so crazy that they used scare tactics on Purseforum to erase their name from this forum with asteriks. This has been confusing me but now I see why. If they have nothing to hide, then they should not try to censor this forum. I agree with you that they know what they are selling. They definitely are not doing their due diligence to make sure fake bags are not sold if this has been an ongoing issue. They are complacent and okay with it happening and I'm sure they do this because there are people out there that don't realize that they purchased a fake bag. For every 5 people that return their bag, they probably get 1 person who keeps it which makes their business run.

Celine has some scary super fakes out there. You took some great comparison pics and even side-by-side the differences are not easy to tell straight off.

A friend once brought her super fake Celine trifold to a dinner at my place and we compared it to my genuine one (mine from boutique). It was really hard to tell and the giveaway signs were similar to yours (except no stitching prob) Also I noticed her fake Celine zippers were more of a brighter gold than mine (my hw was more muted in color).

I lusted over the natural tan Celine medium box bag for a long time but held off as I was waiting for the H Constance 24 in gold. When my H SA finally offered me the C24, I found the style didn’t work as well for me as the Celine box. By then Phoebe had left so I had the choice of getting the new version from store or old-version via reseller. I was too scared of super fakes plus I only wanted it in the natural tan (super delicate leather known to have scuffs even in store) so wanted to inspect before buying. I looked over 4 bags from my Celine SA before finding one that was ok for me.

Btw C**** had a very dodgy rap even before MelfromMelbourne worked with them. And she did this super long post afterwards regretting her decision that I felt bad for her. (To be honest I was surprised she chose to work from them to start with. I know very little about resellers and the C**** name rang alarm bells when I saw her first post.)
It's so amazing how many fake Celines I have come across on other resell sites and they eventually do get purchased. I found two on Depop and notified their customer care service about it which didn't do much because the listings were still up. It is definitely harder to tell with pictures but when you hold the fake bag and see it in real life, it just had that strange smell and feel. Once I received my bag from the department store, that's when I definitely knew. It's always so much easier to visually see the differences in person.

I did get very lucky because the lady that helped me at Celine was able to locate one that's in excellent/pristine condition. When I made the purchase, I was definitely aware of the care this bag will need to keep it from getting scuffed.

I'm not sure who MelfromMelbourne is but that's good to hear that she did a post about them afterwards. I do see that there are other "influencers" partnered with them still so hopefully they soon realize the fishy business practices of this company.

I remember this store had several posts about them here because of the same issue. You probably can still find them.
It just is so unfortunate that Purseforum hides the name so even when I try to search 7 asterisks, no results appear for any threads on them.
 
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IntheOcean

Authenticator
Apr 4, 2018
3,756
4,155
For every 5 people that return their bag, they probably get 1 person who keeps it which makes their business run.
I fear it's probably the other way around. They seem like a legit store, and not many people are in the habit of googling the company they're buying from when the prices are not too good to be true and everything seems fine.
 
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tearonph

Member
Feb 8, 2019
14
0
Hi All,

would like to check if the Zipper Tag/ Pull on the small box also doesn’t have a deeper emboss?

My small box has a deeper emboss on the Zipper Tag, but I also realized that my medium one is the same as the “real” Zipper tag shown here

Can anyone with a small box maybe advise?

Thank you xx
 

A Class Act

Member
Oct 9, 2013
27
4
Please please please could you share which Celine boutique had the old Celine in stock? I’m in tears - I was burned by the same company as you!!
 

JJJ.

Member
May 20, 2020
52
452
Please please please could you share which Celine boutique had the old Celine in stock? I’m in tears - I was burned by the same company as you!!
I received a few private messages asking where I bought my box. I'm actually based in the US and went through a friend who started to source on the side part time. She's always been really good at locating hard-to-find items and she finally started to open up to do this for other people through IG (not just friends and family). I trust her obviously because I know her and also I know it came straight from the Celine boutique because we texted all day the day when she went into the boutique to pick it up with photos shared to me. Up to you to go through her @shoppestories. I didn't mind the shopper fee to not have to do the work myself. :smile:

If you don't go through a personal shopper route, honestly the best way to go about it is to land a really nice SA who will take the several hours out of her work day (maybe even multiple days) to search one for you. To them it's not worth the time especially because they need to be selling Hedi's stuff. I tried this method with no luck. Every SA on the phone would simply give me the same answer that they don't have any old Céline classic box in stock while my friend contacted two boutiques from her source and she was able to find it. I didn't want to mention this in my original post because I wanted the focus to be on the issue of the fake Céline and not how I found it/making it a post to promote a friend. Hope this helps you guys with your search!
 

Roie55

O.G.
Aug 13, 2008
2,471
1,272
Melbourne, Australia
www.pinterest.com.au
This store and site is notorious for selling fakes, we had many threads on this, I have have been targeted with nasty threatening messages from them. They have some nerve. i have an article that i will send you. I always thought they must have the real bags in the store to sell to people who could see a fake a mile away, and use them for photos, they then send online orders a fake.
 
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