Hermès Reveals from My Magical Trip to Paris

Written by team member @pursespotter_karenzkloset who recently visited Paris and brings us this beautiful experience and story. 

It was the shopping trip to end all shopping trips. A mother-daughter jaunt to Paris with no responsibilities, no distractions, and no one telling us what to do or where to go. We could shop endlessly and devote ourselves to fashion exhibits and events for eight full days. And we did just that.

The only person who can keep up with my appetite for nonstop shopping is my daughter. That’s probably no real surprise, as the apple didn’t fall far from the designer tree. Genetics aside, I  exposed her to luxury handbags at a very young age. She received her first pink Chanel wallet on a chain at 12 years old. We split the cost of that bag. It was my way of teaching her the pride of ownership. And so my mini Pursespotter got her start in the world of luxury handbags. 

Already my 20-something daughter has a carefully curated collection. Like most Gen Zs she knows what she wants and how to get it. Smart as a whip, extremely independent, and very opinionated, her eye for detail is unmatched. Together our passion for bags and all things fashion is unrivaled. 

Planning the Trip

Planning for this trip began four months in advance. If I am honest, the primary purpose of the trip was to shop. Okay, maybe shopping was really the only reason. But, it is Paris after all, so of course we would explore everything the city offered a purse collecting, fashion loving duo. And more specifically, we each hoped to get a quota bag at Hermès.

To prepare for our trip, I re-read every PurseBop article on Paris, the appointment system, how to pack, customs, VAT, and the best time to visit the City of Lights. I knew that a trip during fashion week was a recipe for Hermès failure. Avoid early March and late September.

Somehow I forgot about Haute Couture Fashion Week in July, exactly when we were going to be in Paris. Luckily, this ended up being more of a blessing than a curse. But in general, it is best to avoid fashion week if you hope to get offered a quota bag in Paris.

The Fear of Failure

My biggest concern was what if we failed? What if we did not get an appointment online at Hermès or as a walk-in? It seems to be happening more often lately. How could I return as a devoted disciple and writer for PurseBop and explain how I spent 8 full days in Paris, stayed steps away from the orange mothership, visited the store every day, yet did not get an appointment?

I was nervous, excited, and petrified. Having no idea what to expect, I reminded myself that I have been training for this day since I bought my first Birkin. Failure was NOT an option. 

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset
Hermes Clock at FSH

To be clear, despite being a team member and writer for PurseBop, I had no connections at Faubourg Saint Honoré (FSH), no special accommodations, no one to get me a leather appointment, and no prior profile history. I had never been to the FSH boutique on my prior visits to Paris. So we were on our own. And we were both rejected every single day we applied online for a leather appointment. Ten days in a row. 

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

We landed in Paris very early on Friday morning. My first outing was to meet @helenhandbag for the first time. We toured FSH and explored Rue du Faubourg Saint Honoré. Lastly we bid her adieu as she embarked on her new adventure, moving away from Paris after living there with her family for a year.

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset
Glimpse of the Hermes Secret Garden from below

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset of

After the initial tour of FSH, my daughter and I were ready to do some serious shopping. Goal number one: start a profile at Hermès.

My first purchase was in the small leather goods (slg) area just behind the leather appointment hostess desk area. There, I met a sweet SA. I told her about my pink obsession and desire for a Bearn wallet preferably in Rose Sakura or Mauve Sylvestre. She said she had not seen pink for a long time but would look. All of a sudden she pulled out a medium sized Rose Sakura Bearn wallet!

Was this a good sign for what was to come? I gasped and said YES please, I will take it. 

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

Next, we ventured upstairs to the shoe department. Our patient and sweet SA attempted to find us several different pairs of sneakers, sandals and boots in our size. Unfortunately, due to low inventory, it was difficult. I was able to get the “last pair” of white bounce sneakers with the black H in my size.

We did not attempt to ask for a leather appointment on that first visit. Thrilled with our initial purchases we decided to explore the area. 

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset
Bounce sneakers

We were excited to experience everything Paris had to offer. Although shopping was our first priority, we actually could have filled several more days in Paris. Eight days was not enough.

First Hermès FSH Appointment

On our second day in Paris we had an appointment at FSH with the lovely and entertaining @miss_faubourg to shop for fine jewelry. We purchased two beautiful necklaces that we flipped over.

photo courtesy hermes.com
Farandole rose gold necklace

photo courtesy hermes.com
Ever Chaine D’Ancre Long Necklace

After our appointment, I checked downstairs near the Leather Hostess Desk and saw it was quiet. Down I went to request an appointment.

I said: “Bonjour, I was wondering if there were any cancellations today. I have been applying online for two weeks with no luck and I would be so grateful if I could get an appointment.” The young SA looked at her phone and said “yes, we do have some cancellations.”

I could not believe what I was hearing. She took my name and phone number and asked me to sit nearby. I texted my daughter immediately. Momentarily, I received the following text confirmation message. 

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

Promptly at 1:10pm our SA was looking for us. We had left the store to search for a snack. As we returned our lovely SA greeted us and ushered us upstairs to a desk at the top of the stairs. We introduced ourselves and she asked if we would like something to drink. Off she went to get us beverages. 

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

When our SA returned she asked what we were looking for. I explained to her that I was a “pink freak” and really only wanted a Kelly 25 or mini Kelly in Rose Sakura or Mauve Syvestre or some other pastel color. In addition, I would consider a mini Kelly in pink, nata, craie, or black. She said they have no mini Kellys at all.

Then she asked what else I was hoping to get. I understood this to mean non-quota bags so I requested a mini Constance in Rose Sakura or Mauve Sylvestre and mini Evelyne in black, blue ,and orange.

Our SA left, returning shortly with two boxes. She instructed us to follow her up another staircase where the VIP rooms are located. We did not go into the VIP rooms (likely used by Kim Kardashion and Kris Jenner when they visited the store later that week). We settled at the top of this second staircase where there were two small leather couches near a window. 

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

Our SA proceeded to open the larger of the two boxes. She unboxed a beautiful Nata Kelly 25 Retourne in swift leather with gold hardware. Although we did not specify a hardware, we generally prefer palladium hardware. My daughter flipped for this bag. Although it was amazing, in my opinion it was not the right bag for her.

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

Next, our SA opened the smaller orange box. Out came a beautiful mini Constance in Rose Sakura! I could not believe my eyes. This was one of the top three choices on my wishlist. Never had I imagined I would actually be offered it on the second day of our trip. I was so overcome with emotion and happiness that I hugged my SA. She handed me the mini Constance and I said yes, yes, and yes!

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

Again, I asked for a Kelly 25 Sellier. Our SA went away a second time and returned with a Kelly 25 Sellier in Celeste with gold hardware. It was stunning and bright, and the pop of color I was hoping for. And it was a Kelly 25 Sellier. But it was not pink. I declined this offer with a simple no thank you. 

Our lovely SA then went back a third time and returned with four boxes! The first three boxes had the three mini Evelynes I had requested. However, I was only permitted to purchase two of the three bags at this appointment.

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

My Daughter's First Quota Bag

The fourth box was magic. Our SA pulled out a Noir Kelly 25 Retourne in togo leather with palladium hardware. This was actually what I had envisioned for my 24 year old daughter’s first quota bag. My daughter loved it. I loved it for her. So we accepted this offer.

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset
Noir Kelly 25 Retourne togo leather

Next, I informed my SA I had a Constance slim on hold for me in the color Bleu Lim. However, I did not love the color because it was not pink. She looked on her phone and found a Mauve Sylvestre Constance slim and was able to switch it out. I could not believe my luck. Since I already had the matching belt, I was all set!

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset
Ritz Carlton Laguna Niguel

First Impressions Shared by our Hermès SA

At the end of our appointment we were chatting about the experience with our SA and @miss_faubourg, with whom we had shopped earlier. They mentioned how their job is 90% “psychological.” I understood this to mean that within the first few minutes of meeting a client they are able to assess the person’s passion for the brand, their genuineness, and their overall impression of the person. 

Our SA said it was my smile that won her over. I honestly did not realize I was smiling but considering this store is my “happiest place on earth” (sorry Disneyland), I am not surprised. She also said that she liked that I wanted a pink bag and not a neutral like many people. So the combination of my smile and my love of pink made her like me immediately. It really touched me that she expressed this to me.

photo courtesy @jalberstone of
@miss_faubourg and

Needless to say, it was an extremely successful second day at FSH. We were ecstatic about our purchases, and fortunate to have had a wonderful SA willing to find us bags we loved. 

Because there were two of us, we were hoping for a second leather appointment later in the week under my daughter’s name. We asked our SA if we could make an appointment with her. She said no, but if we secured an appointment on our own, we could then request that she help us again. We were satisfied with her response and realized it was time for our Chanel appointment at 19 Rue Cambon. 

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset
Chanel 19 Rue Cambon bathroom selfie

Later that day, my daughter expressed that she was feeling uncomfortable because she received a quota bag and I did not. However, I assured my daughter if we were unable to secure a second leather appointment the following week, I would still be over the moon with my mini Constance 18 in Rose Sakura, my Bearn wallet in Rose Sakura, the Constance slim in Mauve Sylvestre, and the two mini Evelynes in Noir and Bleu Saphir. That was 5 leather items (3 in my favorite pinks) which I could not obtain at my home store. In fact, I had not had a bag offer or leather purchase in over 15 months at home, so this was a major score. 

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

Hermès is closed on Sunday so we were free to climb the Eiffel Tower steps, shop on the Champs Elysees, and explore the Dior store, Cafe, and museum La Galerie Dior.

On Monday we resumed our visits to Hermès beginning at 10:30 am. I warned my daughter that if we saw Michael Coste again, I was going to ask to take a photo with him. She rolled her eyes and said “ok Mom but let’s do it later in the day.” 

Soon after arriving at the FSH store, Michael Coste walked right past me on the second floor. Without hesitation I inquired if I could take a photo with him. He was lovely and obliged and even picked out the best photo of us. My daughter was annoyed because she had “told me to wait until later.” (eye roll).

photo courtesy @jalberstone taken of
@Michaelcostefr and

While shopping that day, I stopped at the leather hostess desk and requested an appointment, but was refused twice. We decided to explore Paris and visit the Sevres Hermès store and try our luck at that location.

Hermès Sevres Store

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

The Sevres store is amazing. We shopped, tried to get an appointment, and enjoyed the different ambiance at this location. We were not successful at buying or getting a walk-in appointment but we loved the experience. 

Later that afternoon we went to the Ritz for High Tea in Bar Vendome which was amazing. Afterwards, we raced back to FSH to try for a last chance appointment at the end of the day. Again we were refused. 

On Tuesday my daughter attended a dance workshop outside Paris given by a French choreographer she admired. Alone, around noon, I went to the FSH store to shop, talk to customers about their bags, chat with SA’s, and wait for my daughter to return. Once again, our walk-in appointment request was rejected.

On Wednesday we made an early morning trip to Versailles. Our plan was to visit the palace, gardens, and restaurant for breakfast and still be back by noon for shopping the rest of the day. 

As anticipated, we arrived at the FSH store at noon. I walked in and went straight to the leather hostess desk. Remember, it was now Wednesday and the days were ticking away. We had only three days of shopping remaining, and I was getting nervous that we would not get a second appointment before we left Paris.

Second Hermès Appointment at FSH

I greeted the lovely Leather Appointment Hostess and again politely requested an appointment because we were leaving in two days and had been unsuccessful online. Mentioning that we had previously worked with an SA who said if we secured an appointment we could request that she help us again may have helped. After telling me several times “it is quite complicated Madame because it is fashion week” she was somehow able to give me an appointment for the following day at 2 pm. 

I asked if I would receive a confirmation text and she said no. This made me uneasy but she assured me my appointment was in the system. This appointment was registered under my daughter’s name so we could purchase a quota bag if offered. Although I was a little uncomfortable about the certainty of the appointment, there was not much I could do. We decided to spend the rest of the day shopping in the Latin Quarter.

On Thursday our luck continued as we secured a lunch reservation at Hotel Costes, an item high on our must do list . After lunch my daughter checked in with the Leather Appointment Hostess at FSH and requested that our first SA help us again. We were willing to wait all day, if necessary, to work with the same SA.

While we waited, we kept busy in the store. We viewed the new Fine Jewelry Collection and browsed and chatted with customers and SAs for at least two hours. 


Boptalk: Hermès Launches ‘Les Jeux de L’Ombre’

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

When our SA was ready for us we were already seated at a desk in the back of the fine jewelry area. There are four desks where SAs often meet with their clients. Our lovely SA asked me what I was looking for. Again I said pink, pink, and more pink. I was still hoping for a pink Kelly 25 Sellier in Mauve Sylvestre. She had seen one that morning but it sold to another woman. So off she went to bring us choices. 

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

She returned the first time with a gorgeous Kelly 25 Sellier in Craie with palladium hardware. It was stunning and perfect, but it was not pink. I worried that I would never use it because I do not use my Constance 24 in Gris Perle. It is not a pop of color and I don’t reach for it.  As difficult as it was, I said no thank you.

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

I really wanted a pop of color but only in pink. After using my Rose Confetti Kelly 25 Sellier all week in Paris, I knew I needed another pink Kelly. It is my most used bag because it is so perfect for me. 

Since there was no pink Kelly or pink Birkin Sellier available, I asked our SA to bring back the Celeste Kelly 25 Sellier she showed us at our first appointment. This time the bag had palladium hardware which I preferred. Nevertheless, I refused this bag for the second time because it was not pink and I knew I would not be happy with it. 

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

In the meantime, she also brought the Feu mini Evelyne I requested at our first appointment. It was a great pop of color in classic Hermes orange so I had to accept it. Mini Evelyne’s are my most used non quota bag. I love them and am building a collection. I only need two more colors to complete my collection. Can you guess what color?


Hermès 101: Hermès Evelyne Bag

Waiting for That Hermès Kelly, This Happened

We again asked for a mini Kelly in any color but she said there were none available. So we asked for a Kelly pochette in pink. She only had Noir in swift leather with gold hardware. I said yes since a pochette is as hard, if not harder, to get than a mini Kelly. 

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

I loved the pochette immediately. Although it is black, it transitions easily into the small evening Hermès bag missing from my collection.

Our SA then informed us that although the pochette is not technically a quota bag, I was unable to purchase the pochette and another quota bag such as the Craie Kelly. This is due to limited availability and low inventory of all quota bags. In the past, I could have purchased both the pochette and the Craie Kelly 25, but not today.


Rumor or Fact: Hermès is Changing the Rules

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset
Ritz Carlton Laguna Niguel

Our SA disappeared a third time and returned with two Kelly To Go’s, one Constance to Go, and a small zip wallet in Mauve Sylvestre with silk lining. Guess which small leather good I chose?

It was interesting that one Kelly To Go was Rose Confetti. However when we compared it to my Rose Confetti Kelly 25, the items didn’t match. Either the color has changed or the Kelly To Go leather came from a different dye lot.

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset
Kelly To Go in Juane Bourgeon epsom

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset
Constance To Go in Anemone epsom

The Irony of Our Purchases

Although I requested only pink bags, and we bonded with our SA over my love of pink bags, we ended up purchasing two black bags. A Noir Kelly 25 Retourne in togo leather with palladium hardware and a Noir mini Kelly pochette in swift leather with gold hardware. However, as you see, I also purchased many other pink leather goods.

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset
Ritz Carlton Lagun Niguel
@pursebop’s Nata Birkin Sellier with @pursespotter_karenzkloset’s Noir Kelly Pochette and Rose Sakura Birkin 25

To recap, during our second (and final) leather appointment we purchased the Noir Kelly pochette, the Feu mini Evelyne, and the Mauve Sylvestre zip wallet with silk lining. We were ecstatic about our amazing experiences at FSH and excited to use all our purchases.

photo courtesy @pursespotter_karenzkloset

Final Surprise of the Day!

There was one more surprise waiting for us when we finished our leather appointment. Unfortunately, you will have to wait for Part 2 of my Magical Trip to Paris to find out what it was. 

Thank you for joining me on this journey to Paris on Instagram and here at PurseBop.com. I will share the rest of our adventures, surprises, shopping reveals and photos in my next few articles and Instagram stories. Stay tuned!

Helpful Tips for a Successful Experience

  1. Everyone’s experience at Hermès is different, whether in Paris or at your home store. Do not compare yourself to others and do not expect the same experience as another person. 
  2. The Hermès online appointment system is a lottery. It is unpredictable, and is very, very difficult to get an appointment online. The number of appointments given each day changes based on the number of available SA’s. I heard (but this is unconfirmed) that there are a total of 50 appointments per store per day. There are approximately 6,000 or more requests submitted online each day. 
  3. The Hermès walk-in appointment system is unpredictable, surprising, chaotic, and frustrating. Nothing at Hermès is guaranteed. My best advice is to be friendly, be yourself, have a positive attitude at all times, and enjoy the experience.
  4. Always keep a good attitude about the process. Hermès is notoriously secretive and mysterious. Quota bags are difficult to get. Since the Pandemic getting any leather bag or slg has reached a new level of impossibility. But that is part of the allure. We want what we cannot have. So we keep trying. Maintaining a positive attitude will take you far in this process. Remember, it is a journey, not a destination. There is always tomorrow, next week, next month, or next year.
  5. Finally, it appears more and more necessary to have a spend profile in Paris before you will be offered a quota bag. The higher your profile, the better the bag offers.


for PurseBop

Published: July 19th, 2022
Updated: November 17th, 2022

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1 Responses to “Hermès Reveals from My Magical Trip to Paris”

  • Hi @pursespotter_karenzkloset! Thanks for sharing your magical reveal, what a special and unique trip to Paris! All that rose sakura is an absolute dream. The celeste is lovely too.

    I really like your advice: “Do not compare yourself to others and do not expect the same experience as another person”. I’m making a pilgrimage to the mothership soon, and am trying my best to keep in mind that the H journey is different for everyone and it’s nice to just enjoy the ride!

    I was wondering if you happened to know the Hermes Paris MCC (Merchant Category Code) that they use when they charge your credit card please? My credit card awards miles based on MCC and if I’m lucky enough to be offered anything at H Paris, I’d love to be able to use the most appropriate credit card to earn some miles at the same time!