palais longchamp image by Jacques Jouberjean from Fotolia.com

A man named Jean Cassegrain began running his father’s tobacco shop in Paris, called Au Sultan, during World War II. He began to make leather cases for cigarettes, invented the first leather-bound pipe and expanded his business in 1948 to include accessories. Cassegrain chose the image of a horse jumping and a stamp of the word “Longchamp” to place on his company’s products, as a nod to the Parisian Longchamp equestrian race course. Longchamp continues to make high-end accessories and handbags and there are a few techniques to identify an authentic Longchamp.

Know your price point. Longchamp bags typically cost $900 and up. If a seller’s price on a Longchamp bag seems too good to be true, it probably is.

Learn details about the particular style of Longchamp bag in which you are interested. For instance, an authentic Les Pliage handbag will have a matte finish and the material will be very lightweight and crisp. A fake Les Pliage handbag will appear shiny and the material will be thicker in feel and appearance. Longchamp bags will have genuine leather handles that will feel soft and smooth to the touch, not rough and stiff.

Look at the serial number on the white tag inside the bag and make sure it matches the serial number on the plastic bag that covers all new Longchamp bags. In addition, the tag should read “AA” (Made in France), “AE” (Made in China) or “AB” (Made in Tunisia).

Look at the Longchamp logo. The Longchamp name and the picture of the jumping horse should be placed evenly and the lettering should be crisp and clean. If the letters are blurry or uneven, or if the horse logo is off-center, the bag is likely a fake.

Use caution when purchasing Longchamp bags online. Request photos of the actual bag for sale, including detailed, close-up photographs. Inquire about any possible damage or imperfections and ensure the seller has a refund or satisfaction guarantee before buying. Check the seller’s reputation with previous buyers and always follow your instincts. If something does not seem to be right with the listing, move on to another seller.