How to interpret a date code on a Louis Vuitton item - Ruse

How to interpret a date code on a Louis Vuitton item

Ruse on August 5, 2015 at 10:25 am

There are many suggestions on how to spot a fake in the luxury world. It could definitely prove difficult if you are not experienced and are looking for an item but are reluctant to pay the price of a new piece. I must admit that this is not a route I would venture to take if I did not have some kind of knowledge. The replica items out there can be very close to the real thing, and you could end up paying similar prices for a fake.

To be safe, if you are really wanting to own a luxury item, go to the stores and see, feel, touch and experience the real thing. If the item you are wanting is a larger piece which is very expensive, I do not believe buying a smaller piece satisfies the craving in any way (but that is just my opinion). It may just be better to save until you can afford the actual item you want. Do your research and if you are not going to purchase the item NEW, then be sure to purchase from a reputable seller who is willing to authenticate the item or have it authenticated.

In the world of luxury items, people buy and sell all the time, and most of the time they keep the packaging, tags and receipts they receive when they purchase these items, so be sure to ask for all of these goodies if possible.

Now to decipher the codes and I am specifically talking about the Louis Vuitton pieces, it is quite simple. Currently the codes will consist of two letters and 4 numbers. The two letters indicate the location where the item was manufactured. The first and third numbers indicate the week of manufacture and the second and fourth numbers indicate the year of manufacture. See table below. In the 1980’s it was slightly different, and you will see the different codes below.


Spain CA; CR; GI; LB; LM; LO; LW

ITALY BO; CE; FO; RE; MA; NQ; PL; RC; RO; ST; TD; SA (also France)

USA FC; FH; OS; LA; FL; SD (also France)

FRANCE A0; A1; A2; AA; AN; AR; AS; AX; BA; BJ; BU; CT; DU; ET; FL; GR; LW; MB; MS; MI; NO; RA; RI; SL;
SN; SP; SR; TH; TJ; TN; TR; TS VI; SA (also Italy) SD (also USA)


YYM (January 1982 e.g. 821)
YYMM (January 1982 e.g. 8201)
LLYYM (February 1983 e.g. SL832)
YYMLL (March 1984 e.g. 843SL)
LLYYMM (April 1985 e.g. SL8505)
YYMMLL (April 1985 e.g. 8505SL)

Initially just numbers were used. Year and month, then the location code was added.

A code could be added to anything and is not an absolute indication that the item you purchase (unless from the actual store) is authentic, so to be 100%, go in and have it checked out. In the case of Chanel, Prada and other luxury brands, there are authentication cards and stamps etc. Everyone has their own system, so whatever you are looking into, do your research and have a thorough understanding of what you are about to get into!

Happy shopping…


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