Rarity and Intrigue: The Hermes Horseshoe Stamp
The French fashion house, Hermes, was founded in 1837 as an equestrian and carriage accessories brand by Thierry Hermes. Today we know and love it as one of the most expertly-skilled purveyors of luxury goods and apparel in the world… and leather still reigns. In 2016, half of the company’s revenue was derived from the sales of saddlery and leather goods. If you love Hermes, you probably know their story- but have you ever seen the horseshoe stamp?
Our Hermes fascination knows no bounds with its hard-to-reach exclusivity producing seemingly endless desire. Birkin bag, anyone? Still, it shouldn’t come as a surprise. A timeless marriage of craftsmanship and creativity, primarily in-France production and the dedication of one artisan per the production of a single bag, Hermes earns its golden reputation- every stitch and strap along the way.
And if you thought the fervor surrounding Hermes bags- especially Birkin, Kelly, and Constance, couldn’t get any stronger, you may not have heard of the horseshoe stamp. Most “special order” Hermes handbags are stamped with a horseshoe symbol to the left of the usual Hermes interior stamp. These SO pieces are often referred to by Hermes connoisseurs as HSS bags. More than just an aesthetically-pleasing reminder of a bag’s custom design, its presence points to a seriously lofty value.
HSS Hermes bags are extremely rare; commissions aren’t available to the public. A few of the world’s top Hermes collectors are invited to place bespoke orders, with the permissible bag models, colors, strap lengths, materials and more changing each season. What’s more, turnaround times for approved bespoke orders range anywhere from six months to a few years.