Making the investment in high quality full-grain leather goods means you can expect durability, longevity, and natural beauty from the material you’ve chosen. With a small amount of care and knowledge you can keep your leather items looking and functioning their best using minimal tools and all natural products.
The color, texture, and tactile qualities of leather will change over time and use. Exposure to the sun and contact with the natural oils from our own skin will darken or “patina” leather goods over the years creating deep variable earthy tones and textures. How we handle and store our leather products will also determine the overall break-in of the leather. This is what gives our leather goods both personality and memory unique to each piece.
Three Wanderer Bags - new, 6 months of use, multiple years of use
CLEANING & CONDITIONING
The best way to ensure a long life for your leather goods is to establish a care routine 1-2 times per year. Using a clean slightly damp cloth wipe the leather free from any dust, dirt, and debris, and allow the leather to fully dry naturally. It is important not to use direct heat sources to dry out leather too quickly as this could cause it to crack or split.
Using a rag apply a small amount of natural leather conditioner evenly across the surface and allow the leather to air dry completely before reapplying if necessary to achieve an even color consistency.
When conditioning leather it is normal for the leather to darken slightly, especially the first time. If this is a concern, test your chosen conditioner on a small, hidden area of leather first to be sure the result is to your liking. Lighter colored leathers will have a much more noticeable change than darker leather. Some beeswax based conditioners can help add to the already water repellent nature of leather which not only protects your personal items stored within, but also helps prevent blotchy staining from uneven wetting. Take care not to over treat your leather goods. Leather does naturally condition itself with use. A simple tactile feel can let you know when the leather is dry and in need of care.
If your leather goods get wet, always practice patience and allow the item to dry out naturally, even if this process takes days. Never use artificial heat such as hair dryers, space heaters, or drying machines with your leather goods. Once dry you can condition as normally to rehydrate the oils in the leather.
When storing your leather goods do so away from any artificial heat source or direct sunlight. This will prevent the leather from prematurely fading, drying out, and potentially cracking. A dark interior closet would be a great option. If planning to store leather for a long time, it is wise to first clean and condition it. Leather is skin and breathes naturally, and for this reason you should never store leather in plastic bags or tubs where moisture can be trapped causing potential for mold and mildew.
Leather is such a durable material that patinas so beautifully overtime making it truly yours as you break it in. The better you care for your leather goods that better they will serve you on all your adventures to come!
Thank you for reading and if you ever have any questions at all about the care and conditioning of one of our leather goods don't hesitate to reach out to us!