It starts with the Hide.
For wallets, there is no other material that compares to leather. It has strength, durability and resilience, while also managing to be supple and bend to your needs.
Yet there are many kinds of leather, and most of them can't really deliver a great wallet.
All of our leathers are vegetable tanned, avoiding the nasty toxins that come from chrome tanning. They are then dyed through as semi-aniline leathers, which means they should age much more gracefully than just surface painted leathers.
You'll also notice a thinner leather than most wallets. This lets you reduce unnecessary bulk, while also encouraging the wallet to better shape to your cards.
While we try to create reasonably unique wallets, our real hope is that it will become very unique as it shapes itself to your life. Enjoy.
Cow hides form the majority of commercial leathers, as they offer good structure and durability. We select reasonably fine grained cow leathers.
FLAT LEATHERS - have a more consistent coloring and wear more evenly.
PULL-UP LEATHERS - develop a patina quickly, showing marks, usage and character much sooner.
Sheep leathers are softer and more giving than those from cows. It is for that reason they have traditionally been used in gloves and very soft accessories (you may have heard of Nappa leathers, which are chrome tanned sheep hides).
FIVE TIPS TO CARE FOR YOUR HIDE
There are two schools of thought with leather care:
- 1. PICK A LEATHER THAT DEVELOPS A RICH PATINA, AND THEN LET YOUR LIFE STORY START TO SHOW.
- 2. PRESERVE LEATHER SO IT FOREVER LOOKS NEW.
We are much more for school number 1, and so these tips should help you maintain your wallet's health, while letting it's history develop and show.
If leather gets too wet: Dry it slowly. Speed drying leather changes its chemical structure, and you end up with stiff crinkle cut chaos. So aim for room temperature drying with gentle air rather than direct heater time with a hair-dryer. And keep it in the shape you want it to end up, as leather will remember the shape it was when wet.
If leather gets too dry: Rub something moist into it. Pick a light leather dressing or cream that is made from reasonably natural ingredients and doesn't have coloring in it. Each country has very different products, but our Carryology community discuss some of their favorites in the comments field here at Carryology.
If leather gets dirty: Just use a damp cloth. You don't want to be putting any soaps or foreign substances in there.
Leather stretches out, but not back: If you start to overfill a wallet, it will never really return to it's former taut self. If you stretch a leather bag when wet or very humid, it will move even faster. Just learn to carry the right amount, and this takes care of itself.
Don't wrap it in plastic, as your leather needs to breath. What you're really trying to stop is any mildew growth, so keep some ventilation going.