Founded in 1856, Burberry has become synonymous with trenches, plaid and all things British. It’s fitting that fashion’s most famous trench was created for English weather and that since its inception, Burberry has turned out heritage equestrian wear fit for the English countryside and beyond. In fact, the house’s patented fabrics and designs have been worn by everyone from polar explorers to British soldiers in WWI (wearing what would become the iconic trench) to tastemakers, celebrities and fashion innovators throughout the 20th century like Humphrey Bogart in Casablanca, Audrey Hepburn in Breakfast At Tiffany’s, Kate Moss and British royals, just to name a few. Burberry’s rich history is populated with people wearing its designs while pushing boundaries and forging the future — Prorsum (Latin for “forward”), indeed.
In 2001, Christopher Bailey took the reins as Creative Director and has been pushing the label in fresh new directions by reinterpreting the house’s codes while also staying true to its history and signature designs. Watch our video above to learn how to spot the label’s telltale signs of authenticity, and read on to discover the most common myths surrounding Burberry pieces.
When authenticating Burberry, we inspect the plaid, the knight logo, interior labels, hardware, materials and stitching.
There are several different versions of authentic Burberry tags. Leather labels should be legibly stamped with even weight. Fabric labels should be sewn down on all sides with tight and even stitches.
The hardware should always be made from high-quality materials, such as genuine shell buttons and bone toggles. Zippers should be engraved with “Burberry” on both sides – a lack of engraving usually indicates that an item is not authentic. On garments, buttons and snaps should carry the Burberry logo as well.
The most common material used in Burberry handbags is PVC, also known as coated canvas. The material is strong, durable and water-resistant. The surface is texturized to look like grained leather. If a coated canvas appears slick or flimsy, it’s most likely not authentic. In 2008, Burberry redesigned their famous Haymarket check. The previous Burberry knight was right-facing, where on the newer versions he faces left and is depicted in much more detail.
Burberry’s stitching will always be clean, uniformed and aligned. It should not be sloppy or crooked.
Burberry Myth 1: Burberrys
The first common myth is that items labeled “Burberry’s” are not authentic. The truth is, garments made prior to 1999 will be labeled “Burberrys.” It was in this year that the company rebranded themselves “Burberry London,” as seen on current pieces.
Burberry Myth 2: Asian-Made Burberry
Another myth is that items made in Asia are not authentic. In 2006, Burberry closed a main workshop in London and began producing items in China. Burberry now manufactures their goods around the world. The first two letters in the ID number will match the country of origin, whether it be from England, Hong Kong, Turkey or China.