Julia Cooke’s guide on how to spot a fake handbag. Exclusively-From-Us Holt Norfolk UK

Designers only use quality materials. Not all designer bags are made of leather. For example, Louis Vuitton is coated canvas with leather trim. If the trim is supposed to be leather, it should feel dry — not oily, slippery or sticky. . If it’s a leather bag, it should smell like leather. It should also be pretty heavy. A very light and flimsy bag is probably fake. Real designer bags have metal hardware, and fake designer bags will have plastic ones. If the material doesn’t get cold in cold temperatures, or hot to the touch in the heat, it’s plastic, not metal

The hardware, zips, fastenings and interior hardware often feature the designer’s name and are of good quality material, should be heavy — not hollow. If it’s imprinted with the designer’s name, make sure it’s supposed to be.  Look at the spacing and positioning of any logos. The zippers should zip very smoothly, and feel heavy and high-quality. If the zipper pull falls off quickly, the bag’s probably fake. Usually the underside of the zipper pull will have a logo. Many handbag manufacturers use the same high-quality zipper manufacturer on all of their bags Usually the underside of the zipper pull will have a logo. Many handbag manufacturers use the same high-quality zipper manufacturer on all of their bags

The stitching should be perfectly even and is one of the best ways to look for authenticity. Different designers use different techniques, and stitching should always be the right colour. Look for no loose threads or back-and-forth stitching at the end of a seam – that’s a sign of sloppy construction. Make sure to check the stitching on the inside of the bag too. Some fakes hide their sloppy work in the lining of the bag.  Designer brands use a high number of stitches per inch.

Counterfeiters rarely have a good view of the bag inside. They pay more attention to the exterior of a bag and forget about the interior. They tend to use either plain linings or linings which are brash and gaudy. If the bag is lined with a cheap material, or poorly stitched, it’s probably fake.

Some counterfeiters routinely mark Louis Vuitton as “Made in France.” but were actually made in Spain, Italy or Germany.

Look carefully at signature prints. Brands like Gucci, Fendi and Louis Vuitton are all renowned for their monogram patterns, which are always featured in a particularly style and type face. Also check Spelling. An obvious one, but the worst copies can’t even get the designer’s name right. Most designer bags will have an inside tag with a brand name and a serial number on it. The inside tags should be hand-stitched or stamped into the leather. Many designers also include authenticity labels on the outside of the bag. Some fake bags may have authenticity tags, but the text will be in a different font and size than the original.