How To Tell If A Prada Bag Is Authentic

As Catherine Travers is working on new posts on authenticating designer handbags, I will be sharing past articles she collaborated on with different bloggers. This post was originally written by Sarah Garden at the Short List Dubai. You can read the original article or more of Sarah’s work here.

But unless you buy a bag direct from a designer, how do you know the bag is authentic? We checked in with some local purse experts to help you buy smart. Whether its high-end European luxury lines like Louis Vutton or Prada, or more accessible American brands like Kate Spade or Coach, counterfeiters love to knock off designer handbags. A tell-tale sign of a fake Prada bag can also be the stitching. Prada utilizes the highest quality standards when it comes to manufacturing, so the stitching should be perfect and expertly aligned. The individual stitches on authentic Prada bags are done at an angle, whereas stitches on a fake bag are completely straight.

Prada are the masters of leather. The luxury Italian fashion house was founded in 1913 by Mario Prada, with a focus on accessories including bags and shoes. Although the brand has gone through many changes, mainly under the creative direction of Muiccia Prada during the 80’s, they are still known for their leather goods.

It can be more difficult to distinguish a fake Prada tote than the likes of Louis Vuitton, because the fashion house have always tried to be more subtle in their branding. This “reverse status” ethos means that most Prada bags only have one logo visible, much like the classic Prada Saffiano Lux Double Zip Tote. We asked our go-to authenticity expert from InSeller, Catherine Travers, to give us the inside knowledge on spotting a fake.

Authentic

Materials
The leather used in the Lux totes is a special kind of leather called Saffiano. It gets its name from the cross hatched pattern that is pressed into the leather. The pattern should be very detailed and set to a small scale. Some fakes will often have a larger pattern pressed much deeper into the leather than the authentic counterpart.

Hardware
As a rule, Prada uses high-quality Italian branded zippers, the most common being Riri or Lampo. On the two zip compartments of the bag, the zipper teeth should lie straight and zip smoothly, exhibiting the quality hardware used in the construction. But be careful! Many counterfeit manufacturers have begun using these branded zippers as well, so examine more than the zip. The snaps engraved with the Prada insignia should be written clear and be easy to read.

Exterior Logo
On newer styles, the logo on the front of the bag should be placed on top of an inverted triangular piece of matching saffiano leather. The logo letter plates should have a flat, not curved surface, and all worlds and phrases should be spelled correctly. The lettering should be clear, concise and easy to read.

Interior Logo
The interior logo should be in the form of a rectangular enamel nameplate affixed to the single open pocket in the main compartment of the bag.

Construction
The panels and piping of the bag should reflect the quality craftsmanship of the Prada brand heritage. Seams should be free of gaps and material should not pucker. In authentic Prada bags, a small square white tab with a number should be affixed to an interior seam. Another tip about the construction is the measurement. The Saffiano Lux tote comes in three sizes, Large, Small and Mini. The one in particular that we are examining is the medium with a standard size of 25.4cm x 33cm.

Stitching
A tell-tale sign of a fake Prada bag can also be the stitching. Prada utilizes the highest quality standards when it comes to manufacturing, so the stitching should be perfect and expertly aligned. The individual stitches on authentic Prada bags are done at an angle, whereas stitches on a fake bag are completely straight.

How

I’ll be posting more of Catherine’s past articles on authenticating designer handbags along with her new posts which will be coming soon! If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us!

How to Spot a Fake Prada Handbag

Tell

How Can You Tell If A Prada Handbag Is Authentic

With the number of convincing counterfeits on the rise, knowing how to tell authentic Prada bags from the fake ones is becoming an increasingly necessary skill for the prospective buyer. This is because, while replica bags todaylook more like the real thing than ever, the quality of these imitations still falls far short of that offered by authentic Prada bags, whose superior materials and craftsmanship enable them to hold up for years under even the heaviest usage.

While many counterfeit bags will successfully reproduce many of the identifying characteristics of authentic Prada bags, the absence of any of the following features is a sure sign that a given bag is fake:

• A white numerical tag inside the interior pocket

• Neat, symmetrical stitching along all seams, with uniform (small) spacing between stitches.

• All hardware on authentic Prada bags will say “Prada” on it (zippers, buckles, locks, metal feet, etc.—none of these will be blank); Prada only uses zippers from the following brands: Lampos, YKK, Riri, Opti, Ipi (these names will be embossed on the back side of the zipper).

How To Tell If A Prada Bag Is Authentic

• Most Prada bags have nylon linings with ‘Prada” embroidered throughout; if the bag has a plain nylon lining, the color of this lining should match the exterior of the bag.

• On authentic Prada bags, the “R” of the Prada logo has a small notch taken out of its right leg; this is a key detail that many counterfeiters fail to reproduce correctly.

• Older authentic Prada bags have a metal plaque inside (usually on the exterior of an inner pocket) that says “Prada Milano made in Italy” on 3 lines, while newer bags read “Prada made in Italy” on two lines; some newer bags may have a leather patch instead of a metal plaque: this leather patch will have 4 filled out rivets (one at each corner). Prada bags with plastic or fabric tags are fake. (Note*: for the past couple of years, Prada has also begun to manufacture some of their bags in China; authentic Prada bags made in China will have a black “made in China” sticker directly behind the white numerical tag mentioned above; any other placement of such a tag means the bag is counterfeit).

How To Tell If A Gucci Bag Is Authentic

• Finally, Prada bags also have an exterior logo plaque made of a combination of metal and enamel: the enamel should match or almost match the color of the bag’s exterior, and the “R” in Prada will have a curved rather than a straight leg

How To Tell If My Prada Bag Is Authentic

If a Prada bag meets all of the (applicable) requirements above, then what you are looking at is the real deal. If not, then it is most likely a replica.