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Types of Leather and Care


 

 

 

Natural Vegetable Tanned Leather 

American steer hide that has been tanned with tree bark and other vegetable matter, but neither dyed nor oiled (thus explaining its skin like appearance). It is a full grain leather, meaning the top side has not been sanded, buffed, or otherwise corrected to the remove natural patterns and grain. Because of this, the fibers remain intact and strong. The material is greatly influenced by its environment and will initially change color like human skin when exposed to direct sunlight. This leather ages to a beautiful dark caramel brown, and will burnish darker in spots of frequent contact. 

     Care Tips: Natural leather takes on stains and markings very easily, which adds to the patina look many folks enjoy. Stains easily from water or other liquids, as well as takes on dye from some clothing or dirt from hands. Keep well conditioned with any leather conditioner. Natural leather will tan in sunlight and turn a rich caramel color. Keep away from moisture, and prevent it from getting wet.

Harness Leather 

American steer hide vegetable tanned leather that is dyed in drums and stuffed with oils and tallows. The harness is produced with strength being the #1 priority, which means it is subjected to fewer waxes and oils than other leathers to preserve the strength of the fibers. It is nice and firm even at thinner weights. The Harness keeps it's shape when split down thin, so we use it often for card slots and slim models. Besides black, all of our Harness will age darker over time.

     Care Tips: Should require very little conditioning to keep it oiled since it is a waxy leather, but conditioning will be good for restoring the uniform look of the item. Can withstand moisture and repel light water. Avoid soaking as you would with any leather item.

English Bridle Leather 

American steer hide vegetable tanned leather much like Harness Leather. The main difference is that bridle leather is impregnated with more oils to emphasize the feel and comfort of the hide. It is more luxurious to the touch and a bit waxier and softer than harness leather. We use it primarily in applications where a heavier weight leather can be accommodated. 

     Care Tips: Expect darkening and a patina with time and wear in. Bridle leather can absorb moisture and water as it is only slightly tallow infused, which gives it a dry feeling surface. But it can dry and recover moderately well. Try to avoid water and soaking as you would with any leather item.

 

 

Genuine Shell Cordovan 

World renowned as the nicest leather available, made by the Horween® tannery in Chicago.  It is produced from one specific part of the horsehide, which lies under the skin and must be skillfully revealed by shaving down fibrous layers. Unlike other leathers, Shell Cordovan is a membrane. This means the leather is extremely dense - most scuffs can be buffed out with a cloth, and if regularly maintained the material will shine like new for decades. Each hide is only 2-4 sq. feet in area, and takes 6-7 months to produce. It is offered as it becomes available.

Essex 

Vegetable tanned side leather that utilizes the same traditional tanning extracts as Genuine Shell Cordovan. Dublin and Derby are the waxed versions of the Essex family. This tannage is marked by a high oil content and ages beautifully over time. The Essex family of leather is very versatile and is used in a wide variety of our products.

Dublin

Vegetable tanned leather with a rich blend of natural waxesUsing the same tanning process of the Essex leathers, Dublin leathers are different in that they are then 'waxed' creating a more rustic look with pull-up.

Derby

Vegetable tanned leather, nearly identical to Dublin except for that it has been tumbled giving it a well worn look and feel. It has an authentic vintage effect about it, as well as the pull-up distressed throughout the hide from the tumbling process.

 

     Care Tips:  Requires little conditioning due to the amount of tallow infused in this unique leather. The high oil content helps this leather repel water and elements. Always avoid water and soaking as you would with any leather item.