Buying an Authentic Gucci Pelham Shoulder Bag #137521

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Gucci Medium Pelham Shoulder Handbag Guide 

Updated 1/25/09

The Gucci Pelham shoulder Bag is probably one of the most copied Gucci bags. Gucci is a luxury retailer and due to the high cost and status they are a prime target for counterfeiters.

The medium Pelham bag retailed for ~$1,295.00 in 2006 when I purchased my first bag.   Now in 2009 it retails ~ $1,595.00. I am seeing about 90% of the Gucci Pelham and Sukey monogram bags listed are fake. I am not saying you can't find an authentic Gucci on eBay, because you can. You just need to do your research prior to bidding. Research the bag you are looking for and research the seller. My goal is to help you to be able to examine the details & craftsmanship of a Gucci and be able to spot a fake.

 I would go to one or all three of the following websites where you can post the auction  for an opinion. These ladies volunteer their time and are very knowledgeable and happy to help. The sites are www.KnowKnockOffsForum, www.ThePurseForum and eBay's handbag and accessory board.

 If you are a victim and have purchased a counterfeit and need a Non-authenticity Statement from a third party for the claim-I suggest either (connected to KnowKnockOffsForum) or

The authentic Pelham or any Gucci handbag will hold it's value unlike a counterfeit bag. Counterfeit bags may look like the "real deal" in the auction photos, but in a short time you will begin to notice the stitching coming undone (sloppy uneven stitching) and perhaps the gold finish starts to wear off the hardware. The quality of material and workmanship is not even close to a handmade Gucci made in Italy.

I apologize for the quality of the photographs on the guide, we are limited by eBay on the size and amount of photo's allowed. When I try to blow them up so you can see detail better, it distorts them a little.


Interior leather tab: Front is embossed with Gucci and reverse side has the serial number

  Front of tab

Note there are two rows of numbers. Six numbers in each row (on this style).  Top row is 137521 (that is the style number of the handbag).

Replica's will most likely show this same top number, so don't be fooled by that. What you need to look at is the font of the numbers and also of the Gucci stamp on the front of the leather tag.

 Item has the correct serial number, but the font is off, corners of tag are too square. The corners should have a very, very slight round edge. The color of the white leather is too chalky white-should be off white.


Although the top line of the serial number is correct, note the interior lining is incorrect for the monogram Gucci Pelham. This is the lining you would find in the Guccissima Pelham.

 I have seen some of the counterfeit Pelham's with an interior cell phone pocket, which of course the authentic unfortunately does not have.

What to look for?

*The handbag should come with Controllato card, Gucci care card and the official Gucci satin Dust bag (prior to 2007). In 2007 Gucci started making the dust bag with a heavier 100% cotton bag. Interior is not white on the authentic dust bags and GUCCI is printed in light gold on the front center. It has a shoe string  tie on the top. Not all handbags come with all the above mentioned items. Some of the high department stores have theirs "go missing".

* The Gucci boutique will usually have  two price tags stapled to the dust bag. Saks and Neiman Marcus do not do this, but place the price tag in the interior pocket of the bag or hanging on the interior zipper pull.. Gucci tags, controllato card or swatch of fabric will NEVER be hanging on the exterior of an authentic Gucci bag.

*Don't be fooled if there is a Gucci gift bag and/or Gucci box in the auction photos. These can be purchased on numerous website's that sell counterfeit handbags. It is next to impossible to tell from a photograph that these are copies, because sometimes they use a stock photo.

*The interior tag on the AUTHENTIC Gucci dust bag should show . . .GUCCI    (IN CAPS) and  made in italy   (Directly under  GUCCI in lower case).

*The double braided straps should be fairly thick, not sparse or loose. On the 137621 style, the shoulder straps measure ~15 1/2". The straps on a counterfeit tend to be a little longer and slightly thinner. (Ask seller for the dimensions including strap length, width and drop). 

Matching leather is found on the leather piece on the bag that the light Gucci horse bit is connected to. This is a smooth non pebbled, non textured leather.This piece of leather measures ~7". The leather piece with the 3 holes measures ~ 3".

*The Gucci interior leather tab has a very, very slight curve on the sides. The tag inside the purse should match the leather trim on the handbag. The reverse side of this tag has the serial number. The good counterfeit copies (if there is such a thing)  usually have the serial number correct , but closely check the font on the interior tag. This is usually off  slightly on the counterfeit copies. The numbers 2 & 3 are most noticeable. They should have the small dot on the end. The replica bags usually have a textured look to this interior leather tag, and in actuality the Pelham has more of a smooth leather tag with only a very slight texture to the leather. This is not true for all Gucci bags, just this style.

*The gold hardware on the authentic bag is a light gold color & a different shade is used on the replica's. It is a brighter, more brassy gold. It can eventually wear off on the replica over time. Again it is sometimes hard to tell this in auction photographs. 

*The interior safety strap is sewn into the seams horizontal. One end is very short and measures ~2 1/2". The other end measures ~ 7.9". The Top part of the snap on this strap is not engraved, but the top interior side is engraved with Gucci.

* The interior zipper pull on the interior zip pocket should be imprinted with GUCCI on the under side of the zipper pull. I see this on the fakes also, so don't think that alone proves authenticity.

*Scrutinize the leather trim on the handbag. It should be even all the way around the handbag. It should not have excessive puckering where the trim is stitched to the bag. Stitching on the leather trim should be at a slight slant, neat and evenly spaced. An authentic handbag will not feature sloppy stitching or loose threads. On the white leather trim bags-the color is not white it is an off white, beige in color, as is the leather. The replica's will have their leather more of a true white.

*Counterfeit manufactures concentrate on duplicating the exterior of the bag, so it is the interior that you will find the inconsistencies.

* Do you know what a stock photo is and how to recognize one? They are usually stolen from a online website. They look like a professional photographer took the photo's, because he/she did!  Ask to see multiple photos of the actual handbag for sale. If the seller has only one photo, I would stay clear. Even if they have feedback of 20,000. You are buying a bag sight unseen. Some sellers that use stock photo's do drop shipping. What this means is the seller has no idea what the bag looks like because he does not ever have the bag in hand. The seller's (possibly counterfeit) supplier ships the item to the buyer. Sometimes it is shipped internationally from China, Canada, etc.

BE SKEPTICAL ON A GREAT DEAL. If you see a action for a Pelham bag with a Buy it Now of a low price of say, $600.00. Are you not suspicious of why or how the seller can afford to take a $1,000.00 loss on the bag?even used? Don't fall for the "it was a gift".... routine. Just how many people have a rich aunt or boyfriend that can buy them a $1,600.00 bag and now they are practically giving it away on eBay? If is sounds suspect, it is likely a scam rather than the real deal.

Bottom line- If it sounds too good to be true, it is.

Photo's I would ask for are:

1.) Clear close up of the interior leather tag wit the GUCCI stamp and the reverse side showing the serial number clearly.

2.) Interior shot that shows the entire interior of the bag.

3.) Close up of the monogram GG pattern and horsebit

4.) Close up of the braided straps

5.) Underside of the zipper pull in the interior pocket.

WARNING If you see a black authenticity card or they mention it in their description-run! Gucci bags do not come with a authentication card.


Interior of the Pelham Hobo

                                                          < < (AUTHENTIC)


                            < < AUTHENTIC (INTERIOR Strap). Snap is Gucci engraved

<COUNTERFEIT  bag. Some of the replica's come with a cell phone



 Only 10 photos are allowed per guide, so I will add more photos in an additional guide. See Gucci Pelham Guide II

Has the Famous Fake black authenticity card. Webb stripe straps are incorrect. Seller has purchased a counterfeit Gucci gift sack and dust bag to fool the buyer into believing this is authentic.



Interior of dust bag is not white-but is also brown.




* I would not recommend buying a high end designer item from a seller with low feedback.

*Thoroughly read through the sellers feedback. If you see any reference that any of the items sold may not be authentic-AVOID

* I also avoid seller's that have feedback that shows they never shipped the item, very slow shipping, package poorly or do not communicate with the   buyer. I just don't care to do business with this type of seller when there are so many other sellers that provide good customer service.

* Low feedback and item is listed with a very low asking price and no reserve. They know they are taking a risk listing the purse at this low price and if it was authentic they would not take this risk-they would want to protect their investment.

* Everyone likes a bargain, but let your common sense guide you. You are not going to find an authentic designer item for a fraction of the cost PERIOD> It just does not happen-not even with a pre-owned item. IF IT SEEMS TOO GOOD TO BE TRUE-IT PROBABLY IS. You may be lucky and win an auction for $200-300.00 under retail price. This is a bargain. Buying a $2,000 item for $200 is a SCAM-not a bargain. REMEMBER YOU GET WHAT YOU PAY FOR.

* If you ask a seller if the bag is guaranteed authentic or they will refund your money 100% to include all your shipping cost and no restocking fee and they say NO or do not answer your question-AVOID THIS SELLER.(Remember you will be required to return the bag if you file a not as described claim).

* I recommend avoiding any auctions that use only a stock photo on the auction. Do your research and know what the stock photos look like. If there is a watermark that belongs to another seller, then we can assume that photograph was stolen. Scrutinize the photographs-compare them to a known authentic or Gucci website.

* I also avoid any seller with private feedback or hide bidders ID.

*Be skeptical of a good deal. It may be possible to find a good deal on a Gucci during a sale, but you are not going to find a $1595.00 bag for $500.00-$600, and certainly not anything under that.

How to report a counterfeit on eBay:(2009)

Go to the bottom of the auction

Click on report this auction

Listing violation

Subtopic: Potential trademark infringement

Counterfeits & Copyright Violation

Pick the category> id: Handbags or Accessories

email us



  • Please be aware that the items advertised on the right are not endorsed by Perfectly Charmed. They are random ads placed by eBay and may be authentic or they may not be authentic.


Disclaimer: This guide is for reference only and was written in an effort to combat the sale of counterfeits. We are not affiliated with Gucci


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