Some helpful hints on verifying two common Giorgio Armani product lines:
Armani Exchange (A|X) and Emporio Armani are – in my experience – the two most commonly found Armani product lines in thrift/vintage stores and from 3rd party sellers on sites such as eBay. As with any desirable luxury brand, there are bound to be counterfeits; here are some telltale signs to look for when trying to ascertain whether your possible purchase is the real deal.
3 Things to check for on every A|X and Emporio garment:
1) The Logo:
An important check to make when verifying the garment is to check the logo, as the two labels are distinct in what they use. Armani Exchange is denoted by the signature A|X logo, and this is the only logo used on genuine A|X clothing; it is important to note that the Armani Eagle is never used on this line. The A|X may be stylised with the separator at different angles, it is not restricted to having the separator at a vertical stand.
On Emporio Armani items, the Armani Eagle is often used. However, naturally the A|X logo is not used on Emporio. So, if your prospective purchase’s tags say Armani Exchange but use the eagle anywhere on the garment or its tags, it is likely a counterfeit. Likewise if it says Emporio Armani and has the A|X logo; leave it on the rack.
2) Label and Laundry Tags:
Older Armani items often bore the logo of SiminT SpA on the laundry tags as the manufacturer. Post-2002 items should bear the signature of G.A. Operations SpA. If neither of these names are present, be suspicious. Something else to note with A|X is that if the country of manufacture says Italy it is probably fake, as only the higher end Armani brands feature items made in Italy. Common places of manufacture are China, Hong Kong and Bangladesh.
With Emporio, most items appear to be manufactured in similar manufacturing hubs although some items – such as shoes – can be Italian made. Be warned that if the label of some Emporio shoes says Made in Italy but there is no ‘Vero Cuoio’ stamp present anywhere on the insole or sole, you may also be dealing with a fake (Vero Cuoio is an Italian industry standard for leather quality).
This may go without saying for some, but it is easy to get caught up in the excitement of a prospective ripper deal when you see Armani written on a garment and overlook the most basic checks. Fabrics on Armani garments are usually quite good, and the construction is always good. Be extra vigilant when examining the construction as some vintage fabrics do not feel so great after a long time, but construction is always a giveaway. This brand is reputed for good quality control, and that should be exemplified in any garment you come across. Does the garment in question have poor stitching? That would be a warning sign.
Furthermore, make sure to watch out for spelling mistakes on the tags, garment care tags or anywhere else on the garment. This is an instant marker of a counterfeit.
That’s all for now!
Now you have some insight into how legitimate A|X and Emporio Armani garments look. Keep this information in mind on your next online purchase or thrifting adventure and it will help you avoid counterfeit items!