Hermès started out as a saddlery in 1837 and has since evolved into one of the world’s most coveted high-end brands. Perhaps this success is due to the fact that Hermès goods have always radiated quality and meticulous attention to detail. Hermès are famous for their bags, scarves and, of course, their ties.
Hermès have their own silkworm plantations in southern Brazil which make grants them control of the spinning and weaving of the yarn, the design of the silk, the printing as well as the sales. In other words, they control every step from the worm to the discerning Hermès customer. Every year, ten new designs are released alongside popular reissues, all exclusively made by and for Hermès. Today the collection of designs amount to well over 75.000 and counting. Hermès is particularly proud of their heritage as a saddlery, which can be seen in their designs. Ties are not seldomly found with equestrian inspired designs. Hermès is also known for their whimsical animal prints and colourful geometrical prints.
Back in the day, Hermès printed their ties with hand blocks, today, they have moved on to other techniques. They now use screens, which is a more costly procedure than digital printing, because Hermès believe that screen printing produces richer and more vibrant colours, producing the feel of a true high-quality product. The prints are made on a lightweight silk twill that has a bit of gum added back to it, which gives the ties a soft touch that is not particularly dry to the touch. In other words, this gives them the Hermès hand - not gummy like old madder ties, but still not like woven tie. This in-between kind of feeling is unique to Hermès ties. The makers claim that the secret lays in the way their ties are vertically inaugurated. Another marker of quality craftsmanship is in the way Hermès ties are cut, and since the ties most often feature a specific model number with the logo printed in the silk, every single tie has to be cut accurately. Once a tie is cut, they add layers of interlining, which gives it its special feel. Hermès ties are all three-folded and hand-sewn.
All these different aspects of what makes a Hermès tie a Hermès tie is good to know when buying vintage or second-hand. Because there are lots of fake ones out there.
Here is a brief list of some of the most important aspects to look at:
1. The silk
Hermès silk printed ties are always 100% silk, never any polyester or blend. And it’s always the same kind of high-quality silk and twill.
2. Examine the direction of the twill
The twill should always go from 11 o’clock to 5 o’clock, take a closer look on the front side of the tie and examine if this is the case, if not, it’s not a real Hermès tie.
3. The tip lining
Hermès ties have a tip lining colour that matches the background colour. For example, fake Hermès ties often have a solid background with an “H”. But, vintage ties from before the 1970s can have this type of solid background, so if you get your hands on one from that era, check it even more carefully.
4. Look at the folding
A Hermès tie always folds with the left side over the right. You can also check the dovetail fold, which means that you open the folds in the back and look underneath the fold you should be able to see the dovetail fold – a hallmark for Hermès ties.
5. Hermès logo
You should always be able to find the Hermès stamp on the front of the slim blade. It should say “Hermès Paris” all in caps and have a copyright symbol, as long as it isn’t from before the 1970s, those don’t have the copyright symbol. You should always check if the logo is printed, sewed, or glued on, those ties are fakes. Also, if the logo is a bit off-centre you should be careful, Hermès always pay great attention to details.
6. Check the label
The last thing to check in my list is the little woven label or tie keeper loop. Check that it is woven and has got the logo sewed in, and not silk or anything else. Sometimes the fake ones have the logo and the tie loop as two different parts.
These are some of the easiest was to spot a genuine Hermès tie. We, of course, only offer 100% genuine Hermès ties and check them very carefully before selling them to you. But still, these can still be fun and interesting facts to know. Now go enjoy Hermès' outstanding ties, knowing the craftsmanship behind them.