i'm no expert but i agree that the hardware on the front looks too close together...
and isn't the tag on the inside supposed to be metal?
i don't know if it's different for the bags with leather coated hardware...
I purchased my first balenciaga about 2 weeks ago!! I got a black city from Holt's in Toronto. As it was my first purchase, I was really surprised to see the amount of variation in the leather, though of course I've heard much to this effect. I asked the SA to bring out the ones he had in the back and in total I had 3 to choose from. One was a bit shinier and very, very crinkly. The second was a display one which was somewhat crinkly but less shiny than the first one. The one I chose was one with the leather that I've always coveted - very smooth and soft, and not shiny at all.
Anyways, I've heard from the other forum that the 09 leathers have been great thus far and I would definitely have to agree. I am IN LOVE (heads over heels) with it. I also saw the tempete, raisin, and maldives amongst other colours. My mom really liked the maldives GSH day on me but I was looking for something a little bit more classic. I thought that I would really love the raisin, but in real life, it just wasn't for me. The tempete was BEAUTIFUL, but as I've wanted the black city for so long, it was an easy choice for me!
Sorry for the essay of this message, I've just been really excited about it! =)
And Re: BerlinRocks, that's what they call the Giant Hardware... and apparently some people really love it. Personally, I don't think its really my style but to each their own right? And I think it will last quite a while... like I said, people are in love with them. To be honest, they do look amazing with some of the colours and really makes the colours pop. E.g. the Giant Silver Hardware on the Maldives is quite pretty, I must say.