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Leather Accessories And The Tanning Process

Leather Accessories And The Tanning Process

Leather is an ideal material for making accessory items. The durability and interesting richness of leather make it the only option for gloves, shoes, handbags, temporarycases, belts, and jackets. The numerous techniques for creating leather products have existed for hundreds of years, however their modern refinements have made as we speak's enormous choice of fantastic leather items higher than ever.

Leather is the result of the tanning process utilized to animal skins. Cowhide is used for most leather products, however pigskin, deerskin, and lambskin are also made into fine leather items. Animal hides are robust in their raw form but will decay quite rapidly unless they're processed and tanned.

Leather tanning is the process of utilizing chemicals to change the protein structure of the raw animal hide to make it more stable, more durable, and longer lasting. There are roughly 4 levels within the tanning process. First, the hide is prepared by removing any remaining flesh and fats after which applying one of several methods to remove hair fibers. Then, the hide is handled with chemical compounds to transform the proteins permanently. Subsequent, the handled hide is additional treated with chemical agents and dyes to prepare the leather for its intended finish product. Lastly, the leather is given a finishing therapy to its surface.

There are a number of types of tanned leathers. Vegetable-tanned leather is handled with tannin and different ingredients found in vegetable sources. Tannin from tree bark was the main ingredient of an historic method which led to the time period "tanning." This methodology of tanning leather ends in a supple and brownish colored leather. It produces leather that can be easily carved or stamped as with belts, but it has the disadvantage of being unstable in water. If soaked in water it can discolor and shrink drastically. Baggage and furniture leathers are generally tanned by this method. Many shoes and bags also use this type of leather.

Chrome-tanned leather is tanned using chromium salts. The advantage is that the leather retains its coloration and form even when uncovered to water, and it is more supple than vegetable-tanned leather. The chromium salts produce a bluish color but the leather could be treated to create different colors. This type of leather is an effective choice for handbags, for example.

Aldehyde-tanned leather is a chrome-free process often used for shoes and for automobile leathers. The process produces leather that's exceptionally soft and can be washed.

Artificial tanning uses chemical polymers to produce whitish leather. This process was developed during World War II when vegetable tannins have been in short supply.

Deerskin produces some of the toughest leathers since deer are adapted to thicket filled environments. Tanned deerskin is a good leather to be used in high-quality accessories like handbags, gloves, and wallets. It is usually a prized material for jackets and overcoats.

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