Choosing the right hides

When it comes to leather, quality is of utmost importance. That's why I always choose high-end leathers from tanneries that are known to produce luxury materials. European leather tanneries are renowned for their expertise in producing luxury hides that are unmatched in terms of durability, craftsmanship, and beauty. American tanneries are known for producing robust, rustic, and durable leathers.

High End producing Tanneries

There are several renowned leather tanneries in Europe and in the US that are known for their exceptional craftsmanship and the production of high-end leathers. Here are a few examples of the ones I choose to work with.

Horween Leather Company (Chicago, USA)

Horween Leather Company deserves a mention due to its long-standing reputation for producing some of the finest leathers in the world. Founded in 1905, this family-owned tannery has been supplying top-quality leathers to luxury brands for over a century. I like to work with one of their leathers which I find perfect for adding a unique look and feel to my products. 

Their Chromexcel provides an oily but smooth feel to the touch while also having color variations based on how it is used. For example, if you were to fold the leather, the oil would escape from the crease, causing the leather to become lighter in color in that area. This adds a unique character to every different product that is made. Over time the Chromexcel develops a beautiful and deep shiny patina, sometimes resembling a polished stone with how reflective it can get.

Alran S.A.S. (Mazamet, France)

Alran S.A.S. is a tannery in Mazamet, France that specializes in tanning goat, calf, and buffalo skins. Established in 1903, Alran S.A.S. has developed expertise in tanning and tawing these skins. They supply some of the most well-known luxury brands around the world and are known as the go to leather for creating crisp edges and beautiful lining.

Their vegetable tanned goat skins are my favorite leather to use as a liner and as exteriors on smaller goods. The leather comes with a natural stiffness that adds a bit of temper if used as a lining. The colors and grain of these hides stands out among other leathers and makes the piece have a clean and finished look.

Conceria Walpier (Italy)

Conceria Walpier is an Italian tannery that has been producing premium leathers since 1973. They are known for their meticulous attention to detail and use of traditional tanning methods. Their leathers are highly sought after by luxury brands in the fashion and automotive industries.

The leather of choice would the Buttero vegetable tanned hides they produce. These leathers come out with a smooth and clean, almost matte, finish. But the real character is in the patina. Over time these skins develop a dark, deep, and shiny patina. The leather does scratch easily but it becomes blended into the patina and adds a beautiful character to the piece.

Weinheimer Leder (Germany)

Weinheimer Leder is a German tannery that has been in operation since 1891. They are known for their innovative leather production techniques and commitment to sustainability. Their leathers are widely used in the production of high-quality bags, shoes, and upholstery.

I love to use their calfskin hides because of the supple and uniform grain. Ideally I would use them for exterior sections because of their scratch resistant nature. The grain is a beautiful sight up close and the tan produces a perfect temper for larger items that need some structure.

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