Hermes Kelly Bag Identification and Value

 
 
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This is the start of aVintage Handbag Value and Identification Index

The Hermes Kelly

The Hermès Kelly did not start its life in 1956 when Princess Grace of Monaco was photographed by "Life" magazine holding a "kelly" to her body, protecting her pregnancy from the glare of photographers. It didn't even start in 1955 when Hermès renamed it the Kelly to celebrate marriage to Prince Rainier. Grace Kelly was photographed many, many times during her engagement carrying the bag and it is due to her that it has become such a very, very famous bag. However the bag started life in the 1930s.

In 1982 Hermès designed the "Haut à Courroies" a large trapezoidal leather bag intended to hold a rider's saddle and boots. In 1930 a smaller version was made (46cm, 18inch) for women. Later the bag got smaller but the style has not changed apart from the addition of a shoulder strap. Calf leather, ostrich, crocodile or canvas and leather it is THE classic Hermès bag.

The Hermes bag below is not a kelly. It has a resale value of $700. The photos are to aid you in indentifying the genuine article.

Hermes
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