It has become increasingly difficult to spot fake Hermes scarves. However there are a few tips that can used to consistently verify the authenticity of a Hermès scarf . By carefully inspecting several key areas on a Hermès scarf you should be able to determine if the scarf was manufactured by Hermès in France. If you need additional reassurance or wish to seek an additional opinion please feel free to contact me via the contact form. Or post in the discussion forum
CARE TAG :
Most tags are white. Check carefully if the tag is black. A black tag prior to season Fall/Winter 2002 always means the scarf was a fake. A tag in any other color besides white or black (pre 2002) indicates a fake.
Only English and French languages are used on the care tag. If the label says SETA, REINE or SEIDE, then it is a fake. The label should only say: FABRIQUE EN FRANCE 100% SOIE, MADE IN FRANCE 100% SILK, DRY CLEAN ONLY. Older Vintage folded labels may just say: 100% SOIE.
Previous to 1987, Hermès care tags came in French, English or both. Some even came with a Department store tag, such as the Bonwit Teller or Nemium Marcus care tag. The tag may or not include washing and care symbols.
After 1987, Hermès care tags have both French & English and read as follows:
Fabrique en France / Made in France
100% soie / 100% silk
Washing care symbols appear / Dry clean only
After 1998, Hermès care tags have both French and English and read as follows:
Made in France
Soie 100% Silk
Dry clean only
Washing care symbols appear
Labels are always in the corner of the scarf. Modern labels are only sewn in by three of their corners; older vintage labels may be folded and only held in by two of their corners. If the label is sewn into the body of the scarf, on the front or away from the corner then it is fake.
Labels on authentic scarves are only black on white or since 2002 may be white or gold on black. A tag in any other color indicates a fake.
Older 3 line care label may have letters on ends. 4 line care label with white on black fabric were used on some scarves after 2002.
Also be aware that it is possible that the scarf’s original owner removed the care tags. A missing tag is not a major factor in telling if a scarf is real or fake. Also keep in mind that counterfeiters can also produce a realistic care tag.
Another significant thing is to look at is the second “e” in Hermès mark. It should be an backward sloping e-grave (è) which is a different letter in French from a plain e or an forwarding sloping e-aigue (é). However, there are several popular editions of Hermès scarves that don’t have the grave on the second e, such as the “Neige d'Antan” from 1989.
Sometimes the accent is hidden in the scarf design. For example, see Coeur des Bois or L’Atlantide. Lots of fakes have the Hermès name written in a different type-face, like the Times New Roman in white on these or the Sans Serif typeface in black on some scarves.
All Hermes scarves have the words Hermes Paris printed on the scarf. Early vintage scarves had it placed in the center bottom of the scarf. The vast majority of the newer authentic scarves have the Hermes Paris integrated into the design. You should assume that you are looking at a fake if the Hermes Paris is simply printed in the corner on a newer scarf.
Copyright Symbol :
Counterfeits may have a copyright symbol, though some I have seen, do not. Suffice to say a copyright symbol is not an indicator of authenticity. Hermès began to copyright their scarves around 1968. For many years, the placement of the copyright symbol moved all over the design. On one scarf it might be found in the lower center panel next to Hermès-Paris, on another, the symbol may be inches away tucked inside a ribbon or corner.
The 1989 “Neige d'Antan” can be distinguished from the “Neige d'Antan” reissue from the late 90s by the lack of the grave with a large © next to it. In the late 90’s “Neige d'Antan” the copyright mark is not next to the Hermès-Paris. There are in fact a few issues that do not have the accent - but these are few and far between.
Look for a copyright symbol somewhere in the design on all scarves issued after 1967. On a newer issue (2000 and on) the copyright symbol will often (but not always!) appear in the upper left panel next to Hermès-Paris in small print.
The copyright always say ©Hermès, not “©Hermes-Paris’ not Hermès©, not “Hermes-Paris©’. Again the second e must have accent mark. Copyright locates on the upper left hand corner of the scarf.
TITLE AND SIGNATURE
Almost all authentic Hermès scarves carry their title and artist signature on their scarf with exception for older vintage scarves. If a scarf presents itself without a title and without a designer's signature it may be a fake.
Hermès has almost never put a picture of his horse and horseman logo on any scarf. Expect to find that picture on the box but not on the scarf. There are a very few exceptions, the most common of which is Grande Tenue, which has a remarkably fake looking Caleche Logo on it. The Grande Tenue design has been re-issued for 2012.
The hems of a Hermes scarf are always hand-rolled toward the front (the vibrant side of print) of the scarf and hand-sewn in thread that matches the color perfectly. If it looks machine sewn be wary.
The tag is sewn on by hand using the same color thread. So if the tag is sewn on in another color (typically black or white on a colored scarf), that's a fake. The hem should be plumb and still puffy. The hems on a Hermes scarf are never to be ironed.
The beauty of a Hermès scarf is mostly derived from the number of colors used in the printing process. Counterfeiters generally use only 4 or 5 colors only. There seems to be more colors because they are used in many shades. For example you think you see a black border but it's a very dark green border.
In addition most counterfeits have very little detail on the back. The design on an genuine Hermès scarf can be clearly seen from the back - it is color saturated. Look closely at the back of a scarf, a counterfeit will have a very dull back side
If you look at a genuine Hermès scarf next to a fake the difference in color will be obvious. The fake will lack the depth and the subtle details visible in the real scarf.
Hermès produce each design in a variety of colors. Counterfeiters will often produce scarves in a color that Hermès did not use for that design. There isn’t a website that lists all of the color ways for all of the designs and Hermès is constantly reissuing old designs in new color ways.
A Hermès scarf is about 35 1/2 x 35 1/2 inches (90 cm x 90 cm). This is because from a single 43 yard piece of pure silk twill on a table they produce 35 scarves of the exact same dimensions (35 1/2 x 35 ½). Slightly smaller scarves aren’t necessarily fakes but make have been washed or dry-cleaned.
Hermes uses the highest and heaviest weight silk available, and the scarves are produced to the highest standards in Lyon, France. Most Hermes scarves should weight right at 62 grams. The weight of the silk doesn’t vary.
The weight of the counterfeits I've felt were quite different from an authentic Hermès. All but one has been much lighter - most were made of polyester and not silk. A new 35” x 35” Hermès scarf should weigh in around 63 grams or 2.2. ounces.
Hermès scarf is made of pure silk twill. Most fakes are made of polyester or a very poor, light weight silk. It should be immediately obvious upon handling, that these scarves were not authentic.
Some Hermès scarves are also made of a silk jacquard, a weaving technique that incorporates a shiny, repeated design in the fabric. These designs of high luster, normally on a background, and are exemplified by “Napoleon”, the bees are near to the “ghost bees” in the silk.
When trying to authenticate your Hermes Scarf it can be difficult to know if you are getting a real designer scarf or just a very convincing counterfeit. If you know the little details that separate the real from the fake, it is possible to protect yourself from being taken in. If in doubt, you can always contact Hermes or an expert to find out for sure. Be aware that you may not hear back right away from Hermes.
I hope you have found this guide to be useful. If you need additional reassurance or wish to seek an additional opinion please feel free to contact me via the contact form. Or post in the discussion forum