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Leather ABC

Some people say "they don't make things like they use to". When it comes to leather goods they are 100% wrong. The only thing is you have to do some test of your own to make sure it is as good as it was 100 years ago.

Good leather should last you a life time. Sometimes choosing the right kind of leather can be very difficult. We have put together some invaluable information to help you in your search for the perfect piece. Just to let you know, we do not and will not ever carry imitation leathers on our website.

Leather from different types of animals:

Leathers are made from many different animal skins each having distinct character differences. The grain patterns on the surface of the leather are caused by the hairs and pores of the animal. Hides have a top layer which is compact and show these natural markings and a bottom layer which has looser fibers and do not show the markings. Below we will show you the different characteristics of the different animals.

  • Cattle - This makes up about 65% of all leather products made today. The grains on the hide are uniform and closely packed together. These hides are usually split into two layers because of the thickness of the hide. The top grain being the better of the two. Because of the large size of the hides they can be used for a variety of products ranging from wallets to luggage. Buffalo leather is a cheaper alternative to using cow but has some of the same characteristics.
  • Sheep – The grain patterns of these hides are grouped together and are less uniform than the cow hides. They only make up about 20% of leather. They are weaker than the cow hides because of looser fiber network and are only about half as thick. However they tend to be softer than the cow because of the looseness in the fibers. Sheep have a high content of fat which when removed gives the leather the wrinkle effect seen in the products.
  • Goat or Kid – These hides produce finer suede compared to cow. They have two types of hair markings on the grain, larger ones are arranged in trios and smaller ones around them. The fibers are compact when compared to sheep and hold up better to wear. They only make up about 5% of the leather products.
  • Pig – Having fewer hairs on the hide they show less marking but have larger pores that penetrate deeper into the hide. This can be seen on the top grain or deeper splits in the leather. Fine suede can be produced because of the compact fibers. These hides make up about 10% of leather in the market place.
  • Other – Skins from other hides are usually called exotic leather. These hides are produced for their unique markings and come from alligator, snake, ostrich, and many others.

Full Grain Leather:

Full grain leather is made up of the outer layer of a hide. The natural look of the leather is left untouched and the imperfections remain. It is the strongest leather available and can be found on anything from luggage to wallets. This leather is prized for its strength, durability, and appearance. There are five different types of tanning processes that can change the feel and look of full grain leather.

  • Belting Leather – Originally this type of leather was used in factories to drive the pulleys of the machines. Its stiffness made it perfect for this and makes it perfect for briefcases today. Usually not died to keep its natural color this leather darkens after time creating a rich look unique to each piece.
  • Oil Pull Leather – “Oil pull leather” gets its name from the effect when you rub your hand on the surface of the leather pulling the oils and creating the changes in color. The oil returns to the leather after the pressure is released, thus the surface will show two tone effects.
  • Saddle Leather – Sometimes known as crazy horse and is made from applying special waxes to surface of the leather. The effect here is that when rubbed the color will change and does not immediately reverse giving it an antique look.
  • Napa Leather – This leather is typically dyed black and is known for its soft supple feel. Many imitation leathers try and copy this great feel but do not keep the great durability.
  • Exotic Skins – All types of exotic skins fall into this category because you wouldn’t want the alligator leather if you couldn’t tell it was alligator. The same goes for any other animal skin such as ostrich, eel, or even stingray.

What leather do you use in your store?

The leather we use to make our bags is Italian imported top quality full grain leather, which price is 1-2 times higher than that of domestic cattle leather. This is why the texture of our bags is so tight, close and thick. It is totally different feel compared with domestic cattle leather bags. You deserve a worthy leather bag, which makes you feel and look good.