Handbags & Accessories

All About the Hermès Constance

By Olivia Pennington
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Hermès Constance

A Brief History of the Hermès Constance

The Hermès Contance was first introduced 1959. This Hermès bag has captivated generation after generation of Hermès clients. Thanks to the success of the Hermès Constance, the Maison has been revisiting the style of their classic bag, reinterpreting it for a modern audience. The evolution of the Hermès Constance demonstrates the brand's commitment to weaving its traditional DNA into new creations for a modern clientele.

The Hermès Constance is part of Hermès’ “Big Three” handbags: the Hermès Kelly bag, the Constance, and the Birkin bag. The Hermès Constance bag proudly bears the Maison’s initial on its “H” clasp that secures the bag’s top flap. The Constance was designed by Hermès draftswoman Catherine Chaillet while she was pregnant with her fifth daughter. Chaillet considered the design process a true labor of love, and the artisan decided to bestow the handbag with her daughter’s name, Constance. The handbag has since been loved by many Hermès clients. First Lady Jacquline Kennedy was frequently seen sporting the bag, which helped grow the Hermès Constance bag’s popularity. It takes an Hermès artisan between 14 - 18 hours to create a Constance, demonstrating the care that is invested in the exquisite handbag.

Hermès Constance

Hermès Constance 18

The most popular size is the Hermès Constance 18. No surprise this is the smallest size, which is consistent with the broader mini bag trend. The Hermès Constance’s standard size is 24 cm, which allows you to fit a wallet, phone, and other necessities with ease. The Hermès bag also comes in a Mini Hermès Constance 18 and a Micro 14 size as well as a rectangular model called the “Elan”, which was released in 2010. Hermès has discontinued Constance sizes 23 cm, 25 cm, and 29 cm, but if you are lucky, you may be able to find these sizes on the secondary market. The Micro Constance contains only one interior compartment, but the larger Constance sizes offer the choice of a single or double interior compartment. This Hermès bag can be worn comfortably over the shoulder or across the body. The length of the bag’s strap can be adjusted according to the wearer’s preference.

Hermès Mini Constance 18 Ombré Salvator Lizard Palladium Hardware

Hermès Constance Materials

The Constance comes in many premium-quality leathers, exotics, and hardware combinations. The most common material for the Constance is Box leather, the material from which it was first constructed. Of course, it is now possible to find the Constance in bolder materials like Niloticus Crocodile, Rouge Alligator Mississippiensis, and Rose Tyrien Ostrich. Finding the right Constance for you depends on what you need in your Constance. If you are looking for a purse you can wear daily, go for an Hermès Constance in Naturelle Beige with Courchevel leather. Seeking a statement bag? Why not try the Constance in Purple Anemone Swift leather? Constance bags come in palladium-plated or gold-plated hardware most commonly; however, many limited edition Constances have special hardware. Take the Constance Cartable, for example, whose “H” clasp hardware is inlaid with enamel that matches the color of the bag’s leather.

But wait, there's more!

Hermès Constance Long Wallet Blue St. Cyr Matte Alligator Palladium Hardware

Hermès Constance To Go

The Hermès Constance’s popularity inspired a line of wallets released in 2004 that retain the ethos of the original handbag. The most popular is the Hermès Constance To Go Wallet, but the Constance Slim Wallet and the Constance Compact Passant Wallet are also highly sought-after styles. The Constance Long To Go Wallet is an 8 cm rectangular clutch that houses four credit card slots, two interior pockets, a zipped coin purse, and an exterior pocket. The Long To Go also features a removable shoulder strap as of its 2020 redesign that transforms the clutch into a shoulder bag or crossbody. The Constance Slim Wallet is a 5 cm square wallet with rounded edges. The Slim features two credit card slots, a removable zippered coin purse, and a belt loop for added functionality. The Constance Compact Passant Wallet is the same 5 cm size as the Slim, but it lacks the belt loop and has sharper edges. The Passant has two credit card slots and a zippered coin purse in the interior. These Hermès wallets are commonly found in Epsom leather in a variety of colors. Hardware options include the standard palladium-plated or gold-plated options.

Hermès Constance Price

The Hermès Constance price depends on many factors including material, size, age and condition. The Hermès Constance 18 retails for about $8,000 while the Hermès Constance 24 retails for about $11,000 in leather. Depending on the color, a store fresh Hermès Constance 18 price ranges from $12,000 to over $20,000 on secondary marketplaces like Sotheby's while the larger Hermès Constance 24 often sells for less. The popularity of the Hermès Constance bag has been declining recently so prices are less of a premium than the Birkin bag or the Hermès Kelly bag. Leather Hermès Constance bags are more popular on the secondary market than the exotic bags, a trend that is also true for other Hermès bags. While an exotic Hermès bag is rarer, buyers continue to be willing to pay a much higher premium for leather bags.

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