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  • The Candy Collection: A Look Back

    Posted on by Max Brownawell

    Launched in 2011, and first seen out and about in the summer of that year, the Hermes Candy collection is one of the widest ranging limited editions for Birkin's and Kelly's. The brightest colors were released first, with the more subdued tones following in Fall 2012. Hermes had created limited edition bags in the past with differing interior colors, but never on this scale, or with such a catchy collection name. The Candy bags were produced in 35, 30 and 25cm Birkin's and 35, 32 and 28cm Kellys, meaning there are sixty six unique bags in the collection (It’s rumored there were even 25cm Sellier Kellys produced in the Candy combinations as well, but I’ve only been able to find two examples; a Rose Jaipur and a Jaune d’Or, so it’s likely they only made a few for the later color releases).  Previous to this collection, Hermes had released a previous wide-ranging series of bi-color bags called Eclat, or Flash in French. These bags were done exclusively in clemence (except for the Fauve Tadelakt & Rubis Chevre version), which softens and slouches over time. Also, the second color extended beyond the interior to the base of the bag, and the inside of the closure Sangles. Many Hermes collectors prefer Epsom leather because it holds its shape much better over time, and shows off bright colors quite well. This all added to the popularity of the Candy Collection, which saw new color combinations added for a handful of seasons after the initial release. 

    Some of you may remember when this collection first launched, there were also new Micro Kellys and Birkins being offered in Candy colors. To clarify, initial Hermes released a group of Candy Colors (Rose Tyrien, Kiwi, Blue Celeste), in which they produced the bi-color Candy bags, as well as solid “Candy” Micro bags. These Micro bags had the same color inside as out, and were not further produced in the other Candy colors created in later seasons. Today it is considered a bit of a misnomer to call the micro bags “Candy” as this term is generally accepted as referencing the bi-color Birkins and Kellys of the collection only. 

    It’s well known that limited edition Birkins and Kellys rarely retail for much more than their standard counterparts, but when Candy Bags first hit the auction block around the same time they were released, the initial results were astounding. In July 2012, Artcurial sold a 35cm Rouge Casaque & Blue de Malt Candy Birkin for almost thirty-five thousand US dollars (still the auction record for a Candy Collection bag, and the only time the Rouge Casaque has come to auction). For the first four years after their release, Candy Bags averaged around $17,500 at auction, though the results start to trend downward in 2015. To date almost a hundred Candy bags have crossed the auction block, and their average price has dropped to around $12,500 (basically the current US retail price for a leather Birkin 35). A major factor in this downturn was likely oversaturation. From 2011 to 2014 only twenty Candy Bags went up for auction, but in 2015 alone, the hammer came down on twenty more. 

    If you’re looking to buy a Candy Collection bag today, I would recommend seeking out one of the rarer examples. The Rouge Casaque and Blue de Malt combo is still virtually impossible to find in any size, but with regards to the other color combinations, I’d suggest finding a 25cm Birkin or 28cm Kelly (or if you’re really lucky a 25cm Sellier Kelly) to buy. These sizes still come up very infrequently and are more likely to hold stronger values in the long run compared to their larger, more common cousins.

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