A symbol of luxury, the classic Hermès cashmere scarf represents quality, craftsmanship, and timeless style. Before embarking on purchasing your next Hermes scarf from a dealer or auction house, determine what to look for. Learn how to tell the difference between a fake Hermes cashmere scarf and the real thing, and learn how to maintain the scarf’s condition over time, as maintaining the value of a Hermes silk cashmere scarf requires proper care.
Vintage Hermès Cashmere Silk Scarf
Since 1937, as many as 1,200 personalized designs of Hermès scarves have been created, and others are still released seasonally. Even today, timeless scarves are still produced in France in the same way: hand-screened hemmed and hand-stitched hems. With a production time of up to six months, this precision is reflected in the quality and cost of the scarves.
Hermes Cashmere Scarf Patterns
Often monumental, the designs range from the more popular and classic themes such as equestrian, military and nautical, to more interesting botanical, natural, and mythological themes, to the eccentric and modern. Each freelance Hermès artist is known for his or her unique style. Artists such as Hugo Grygkar and Robert Dallet have acquired great collectability. Other popular artists include Leigh Cook, Kermit Oliver, ZoéPauwels, Leila Menchari, Annie Faivre, Laurence Bourthoumieux and Eugene Brunelle.
How to buy a Hermes cashmere scarf
If you buy a scarf from a Hermes boutique, you know you’re buying the real thing. You can also expect top-notch attention and service as standard in this high-end environment.
Experts say a Hermès scarf costs $1,965 per pound, which is a significant investment. The good news is that a scarf actually costs less than a quarter of a pound. Prices vary by size and fabric.
Here are some current prices for Hermes USA.
Hermes silk twill scarf – $300 – $455
Hermes cashmere and silk shawl- $800-$950
Real Hermes silk square scarf or ribbon- $125
Silk Fringe Scarf- $640
Hermes Colored Scarf Ring- $135
Hermes Cashmere Scarf – $775
If these retail prices are simply too expensive, there are other ways to make Hermes’ scarves even less expensive. You can frequent the semi-annual sales in the New York or Paris stores where you can get around 25% or 30% off, or even more for samples. Just remember that scarves will be stacked on tables and then picked up widely, so anything you find may not be at the original price and you would expect to buy it at full price.
Discount designer stores sometimes also sell Hermès accessories, but this is popular. But Bluefly.com, for example, currently has a Hermès cashmere scarf for 10 percent more than the normal retail price. Samples and vintage scarves can also be found on eBay and in thrift stores if you know what to look for. However, it is important to note that some limited edition vintage scarves can actually sell for more than what you would pay for a new version of the scarf in the Hermes store. For example, a Hermès silk scarf on eBay recently sold in an online auction for $967, about three times the original retail price.
For those men who appreciate the finer things in life, Hermès sells ties in the same silk as hand-folded women’s scarves.
How to tell a fake Hermes cashmere scarf from the real thing
As a measure of authenticity, the hand-rolled edges of a genuine Hermès scarf should be arrow-straight and beautifully finished. says Randell, “Any scarf that uses machine stitching or messy stitching cannot be trusted.”
Designs will continue to be re-released in multiple colors, which will make identification more challenging. says Randell, “The printed designs will be clear and crisp, and use vibrant colors.” “Most scarves will have their own title in the design and often carry the artist’s signature.”
Detail of the edge of the Hermès “Carpe Diem” silk scarf, designed by Joachim Metz in 1994.
Hermès’ cashmere silk scarves are a great addition to your closet, instantly adding character to any style. They are also highly collectible and timeless and are worth far more than any other scarf on the market.
Taylor suggests, however, that if you plan to collect them, buy them at auction rather than retail, as you may be able to get a higher price for even the most attractive prints by well-known designers. Be sure to look for quality scarves in good condition as well. adds Randell, “Scarves in good condition, and in their original boxes, tend to do best at auction when they make excellent gifts.”
How to wear a Hermes cashmere scarf
If you decide to wear your scarf, choose a professional cashmere scarf dry cleaner to make sure you don’t press on the edges of your hand rolls. “The box that came with it and the acid-free Hermes scarf is the ideal way to store the scarf, and this particular example looks as fresh as when it was purchased 24 years ago,” Randell says.
Other ways to keep your Hermès cashmere silk scarf in good condition: Avoid wearing it in the rain. Silk can be damaged by contact with any type of liquid. Do not use any scarf clips, rings, or brooches that could puncture holes or pull threads. Do not fold the scarf immediately after wearing it, but allow it to “breathe” overnight.
Fold the scarves out of direct sunlight and keep them in their original boxes because they will be more desirable if they are sold again in the future,” Taylor says. The scarves are easy to store and versatile, “and the condition is very important because stains and tears can greatly affect value.”
Tips for keeping Hermès cashmere scarves in good condition
Choose professional dry cleaning if necessary
Avoid any contact with moisture
Forgo scarf clips, rings, and brooches
Allow the scarf to “breathe” after use
When storing your scarf, please fold it in its original box
Also, if you want to avoid possible wear and tear, consider hanging your Hermès scarf on the wall. “Hermès scarves are beautiful when mounted and framed,” says Taylor. “They make for interesting alternative artwork to display in the home.”