Don’t be intimidated by leather! Our bags are durable and very easy to care for.
Our bags are made of goats’ leather, which is a durable and hard-wearing leather. Goat hide is softer, and more supple than cowhide, due to the presence of lanolin in the leather. Goats hide is also water resistant and quite easy to clean. When not in use, keep your bag in a cool, dry location.
Please keep in mind that our bags are finished with a natural process that is different than what is used for most of the leather you have in your home and closet. Our artisans uses a traditional vegetable tanning process, which is an eco-friendly and chemical free process. Vegetable tanning is one of the oldest ways of tanning leather, and also the safest leather tanning method for leather workers, nearby communities, and the environment.
Vegetable tanned leather has been used for centuries for bags, traditional saddlery, and many other products. Leather has the ability to breathe while also absorbing moisture, making it an ideal choice for a variety of products. The leather in our bags doesn’t have dyes or surface finishes applied to it, and really does require only minimal upkeep to look its best.
Avoid chemical-based leather products: Your bag has been finished with a natural vegetable-tanning process, which is an eco-friendly and chemical-free process. Please don't use chemical products to clean your bag! The leather in our bags doesn't have dyes or surface finishes applied to it, and synthetic chemical compounds can damage the leather.
Apply a conditioner 3-4 times per year: We recommend Skidmore's Leather Cream, an all-purpose leather care product that will clean, condition, and protect your bag all in one simple step. This chemical-free conditioner is made in small batches with beeswax and high quality plant oils, and will restore tannins to hydrate and protect your leather. If you live in a very dry climate, or regularly expose your bag to lots of moisture, you may need to condition more frequently, but generally once every 3 or 4 months is enough. Can't keep track? If you purchase your bag directly from our website, you'll automatically get a reminder email!
Rub in, then rub off: First, clean off excess dirt with a slightly dampened cloth. Next, using a soft clean cloth, apply a small amount of Skidmore's Leather Cream in a circular motion. Allow it to soak in for 10-15 minutes, remove any excess, and buff out with a dry cloth.
Time builds character: Just use your bag! Vegetable-tanned leather will pick up scratches and marks over time. Don't let this bother you. You can gently buff any marks with a damp cloth or a small amount of leather cream to help blend these marks in, and over time, your leather will soften and develop a beautiful burnished patina that you will be proud of. Regular use of a leather conditioner may darken your bag's leather slightly - this is normal and will add to its beautiful patina.
It's a bag, not a baby: Take care of it, but don't baby it too much! For example, while excess water is bad for leather, getting stuck out in the rain won't ruin your bag! Just get where you need to go, then simply blot off any water with a soft cloth or even paper towel, and let your bag dry naturally in a cool, dry spot (but don't put your bag near a register vent, radiator or hair dryer to speed up the drying process!) Regular use of Skidmore's Leather Cream will build up a degree of water resistance, but if you'd like to further waterproof your bag, you can also apply a thin coat of Skidmore's Waterproofing, a pure beeswax product. Both products are available on Amazon.
Our bags are made with premium coated brass buckles, clips and rivets that can be cleaned with a damp cloth. The coating helps stop the brass from developing spots as it ages, and you should avoid using abrasive cleaners and chemicals on our hardware.
When you first receive it, your bag will smell of leather. This smell will usually fade within 3-4 weeks of regular use. Most of our customers love the smell of new leather, but you can speed up this process by stuffing your bag with newspaper to help absorb the smell sooner.