Hardware-less Bags?: Balenciaga Blackout City Bag vs. Hermes Shadow Birkin


Bags With No Hardware?

If you’re picky about your hardware choices or hate mixing metals, you’ve probably spent many days deliberating whether you should add that new bag to your collection in gold, silver, rose gold, ruthenium….the list goes on, and the decision can seem impossible. Balenciaga has created a new bag that will help take all the guesswork out of the hardware work game! The latest Balenciaga Stud-Free, Blackout City Bag might just be your new best friend.


The Blackout City Bag is the same silhouette as the iconic City Bag, yet all the hardware is removed and replaced with a pattern of tiny perforations. Yes, that’s right, the bold, rocker-chic studs that give the City Bag its familiar look are completely gone. The Blackout effect is even more pronounced since the bag is made out of drummed calfskin that has a very matte look. This style is definitely edgy, and the lack of hardware gives the bag a more clean-cut, minimalistic twist. You can now get your hands on the Balenciaga Blackout City via Neiman Marcus for $2,950. Strangely even without hardware, the Blackout is slightly more expensive than the classic City Bag probably due to the way its constructed.


Back View


Side View

Hermes lovers may agree that the Balenciaga Blackout Bag strongly resembles the idea of Hermes’ Shadow Birkin, another hardware-less bag. The Hermes Shadow Birkin is a rare, limited edition bag that was released in 2009. The Shadow Birkin is made from Alezan evercalf leather, and the flap and sangles of the bag are only embossed, creating a shadow effect. At the time of release, the Shadow Birkin retailed for nearly $11,000. So, the $3,000 price tag for the Balenciaga is starting to look a little more friendly…


Photo Courtesy: LarkieAtLarge


Photo Courtesy: HoleJewel

What’s your take on designers ditching the hardware? Do you appreciate the unique look or do these bags look somewhat unfinished or gimmicky to you?

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Published: September 8th, 2016
Updated: May 27th, 2017

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