A Brief Guide to Gucci Authentication & Serial Numbers
If you’re searching for a Gucci bag for your store, it’s imperative you know the difference between and real bag or a counterfeit. Better yet, you should just buy from a trusted reseller who has your back. If you’re still considering the transaction on your own, there are some signs you need to watch out for. Here’s a brief overview to help you get started.
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 resale 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 your customers or yourself, 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 CONTROLLATO CARDS & SERIAL NUMBERS
Nothing will ruin your store’s credibility faster than accepting and selling fake designer items. Knowledge is power, and remember if something’s too good to be true, it’s probably a fake.
A truly authentic Gucci bag comes with a calling card, or a “Controllato Cards,” which are added to each new item to show they have been inspected for quality. An absence of one of these cards could indicate a forgery, but don’t assume that having a card means you’ve got the real deal. If the counterfeiter can make a fake bag, they can most certainly make a fake paper card.
If the Gucci logo is centered, the word “controllato” is in all lowercase, and the numbers “1234567890” are at the bottom, then it may be legit. If the card isn’t even there or doesn’t have the aforementioned qualities, drop it like it’s hot.
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, beware.
NEVER QUESTION GUCCI AUTHENTICITY WITH LEPRIX WHOLESALE
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On our wholesale platform, every item comes with a description, condition, and letter grade for top brands. By leveraging deep data analytics and AI, our platform also shows you a suggested minimum resale price and estimated profit margin for top pre-owned brands like Chanel, Hermès and Dior. Every item is LePrix-vetted and inspected so you and your customers can rest assured knowing that each purchase is authentic.
If you’re a business, you may qualify for exclusive access to authentic, pre-owned designer bags, jewelry, and accessories at wholesale prices. Find out more here.
LePrix means “the price” and “the prize” in French, which captures the spirit of the hunt for pre-owned luxury. The thrill of the hunt sparked the launch of the world’s largest marketplace enabling access to shop over 600 designer consignment boutiques online. While working with hundreds of the world’s best consignment boutiques, we discovered that our store partners were wasting a lot of time and energy sourcing inventory to grow their businesses. They needed a convenient way to source more top-selling products like Louis Vuitton, Chanel, Gucci, etc. from other trusted resale businesses. And that is how LePrix Wholesale was born.
In 2018, LePrix launched LePrix Wholesale, which is the only marketplace in the U.S. unlocking access to pre-owned, pre-authenticated luxury from the world’s most trusted suppliers at deeply discounted prices. Our team of experts carefully select suppliers, curate the most desirable inventory and inspect your orders before shipment. You will be assigned a dedicated account manager to help you optimize your wholesale buying experience. We believe in empowering businesses like yours with the right tools (access to top sellers, inventory you need, or valuable resources) and support to help you grow your business.
*LePrix is not affiliated with any brands in any manner. All items are LePrix Vetted and Approved: LePrix’s team of specialists inspect every item before it’s listed and sold on LePrix Wholesale.