Handbags and Accessories

Hermès Bag Review 2022: Birkin Bag and Hermès Kelly Bag Remain Most Popular

By Max Brownawell
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Hermès Bag Review 2022

With the year wrapping up and the sale of thousands of bags behind us, we can look back on the mass of data produced by handbag auctions around the world and see exactly where the market is moving. Overall prices were reasonably stable with leather Birkin Bag and Hermès Kelly bag styles declining just 1% on average compared to 2021. Considering the overall concerns in the macro economy, Hermès bag prices have remained remarkably stable and demand remains largely unchanged. Parsing this out by style and size we can easily see which bags are gaining in popularity, and which are more or less stable in their values. Auction averages take into account bags in a variety of conditions, and store-fresh examples tend to bring higher than average at auction and fixed price sales.

Mini Kelly

Hermès Mini Kelly

As the Hermès Mini Kelly enters its seventh year on the auction market its prices remain above all others. Average auction price for the Hermès Mini Kelly results for regular leather examples went from a high average of $28,250 in 2021 to $27,850 in 2022, still nearly four times the bag’s retail price. Store fresh leather Hermès Mini Kelly regularly sells for over $30,000 on Sotheby's Buy Now marketplace. While it is hard to imagine further price increases for the Hermès Mini Kelly in 2023, we will have to wait and see.

Hermès Kelly

Hermès Kelly Bag Gains

The largest increase in average auction prices was had by the Hermès Kelly bag in Retourne size 28, which increased an average of 14.5%. Still averaging less than Hermès Kelly Sellier 28 bag, the two constructions are closing in on each other with Retourne Hermès Kelly averaging a tad over $18,000 and Hermès Kelly Selliers clocking in at nearly $19,300.

Other than the large leap performed by Retourne Hermès Kelly 28, the other styles that increased in value were Retourne Kelly 35s which increased over 9% to an average of $10,100, Sellier Kelly 32s which jumped 6% to $14,185, and Kelly Retourne 32s which rose 3.3% to $12,500 on average. The only size Birkins to increase in average value were 30s, which stepped up 2.8% to an average price of $17,800.

Hermes Kelly Pochette

Rise of Kelly Pochette

The Kelly Pochette has been around since 2004 but didn’t rise to the popularity of other Hermès bags until recently. Average auction prices languished under $10,000 through 2019 before the frenzy for these cute clutches propelled prices skyward. 2022 saw the craze continue with average auction results rising another 5.85% topping $16,500. The Kelly Pochette is many ways a more practical Hermès mini bag and fans are likely to grow for the Kelly Pochette. Even at the higher auction prices, the Kelly Pochette is still selling for much less than the Hermès Mini Kelly. We believe increased demand for the Kelly Pochette could continue to grow in 2023 driving prices even higher for store fresh bags.

Most expensive Birkin Bag

Most Popular Birkin Bag: Birkin 25

The Birkin 25 remained the most popular and sought after Birkin bag in 2022 follwed by the Birkin 30 as the next most popular. The sellier Birkin bag averaged $25.000-$27,000 compared with $17,000-$22,000 for the traditional Birkin bag. The most expensive sellier Birkin 25 sold at auction for Sotheby's in 2022 was a Shiny Black Porosus Crocodile Sellier Birkin 25 from 2021 for $81,900. The most expensive leather Birkin bag sold in 2022 was a Metallic Silver and Bronze Chevre Birkin 25 from 2005 fur just under $140,000.

Birkin Bag

Hermès Bag 2023 Outlook

Heading into 2023, it seems the mid-sized bags will be more popular than ever. The practicality of the Kelly 28 Retourne and the easy everyday size of the Birkin 30 are dawning on collectors everywhere. Prices for these sizes will likely continue moving towards those of smaller Birkin 25 and Kelly 25 bags as 2023 ticks on, so don’t wait to get the bag that speaks to your heart as soon as you see it! While the Hermès Himalyan Birkin, Hermès Himalyan Kelly or the Birkin Faubourg are likely to remain the hero Hermès bag leading an auction, a new year can bring surprises.

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