We only work with vegetable tanned leathers. Vegetable tanning is one of the main leather production methods in use today: approximately 10% of all leather is vegetable tanned. This technique involves using natural vegetable tannins to alter the protein structure of the hide, causing it to become leather. In essence, these organic substances serve three functions: preserving, strengthening and giving colour to the hide.
Benefits of vegetable tanned leather
There are numerous reasons why vegetable tanned leather is regarded as the benchmark in the leather industry. Let’s start by looking at the favourable physical characteristics it possesses. Veg tan leather, in particular, is renowned for its robustness and strength — if appropriately cared for, it could last longer than a lifetime.
Aside from durability, the vegetable tanning process also gives leather a distinct, somewhat sweet aroma — the kind you probably already associate with leather. And the absorption of tannins makes for colours that are notably rich and deep in character; think natural and earthy tones, like beige and brown.
Because vegetable tanning requires no synthetic coatings, the leather is allowed to ‘breathe’. As a result, it’s able to absorb moisture and oils, and go on to form a ‘patina’. In the world of leather, patina is an indicator of quality and aesthetic beauty, something that enhances the perceived value of a leather product.
Part of the joy in owning say, a vegetable tanned leather wallet or weekend bag, is also the sense of prestige that it evokes. Knowing that the leather has been painstakingly produced by expert artisans — who rely heavily on centuries-old techniques — is something to celebrate.
Lastly, vegetable tanning is the most environmentally-friendly method of leather production. More on this later, but it’s worth reiterating that only natural and organic substances are used during the production process.