There are different types of leather, each with its quality. When buying leather products, you want to be sure that you are purchasing the right quality. That means it’s good to be well versed in the types of leather available in the market.
Below are some of the frequently asked questions about leather. Read on, and you may learn a thing or two.
What Are the Different Types of Leather?
The main kinds of leather include:
- Top Grain
- Split Leather
- Bonded Leather
Let’s get into the details of each type.
One can assume that it is the top layer of the hide from the name top grain, but it’s not. It’s the second layer. The top layer is removed by buffing it or sanding to eliminate the imperfections in the finish. That gives the leather a more pliable and uniform appearance, but that also means it can deteriorate much faster than other types.
Given its flexibility and softness, top grain leather is commonly used to produce quality goods such as handbags, shoes, and wallets.
Full-grain leather is the top layer of the hide. It’s just like the original hide; only that hair is removed. It’s not buffed or sanded like the top grain. That explains why it has densely packed fibers that are much finer and strong, giving it a durable surface.
Because it is not buffed, you will realize that it has some imperfections due to a cow rubbing up against a fence or cuts they may have received. Note that those with fewer blemishes are highly prized as they are less in the market.
Also, a patina is developed because the outer layer is not removed. That makes it a good fit for furniture, footwear, and saddlebacks. There are various drawbacks to using this leather, but if you have ever worked with full-grain, you can attest that it gets more beautiful with age.
Split grain leather is the lower layer of the hide produced using the skin, which remains after the top is split off. It is leather cut from the lower levels of the top grain.
It’s rougher in texture because it resides below the top layers, and that is why it’s used in finishes of leathers that are embossed and colored. Its top layer is sanded just like the top grain, which means it’s not as durable as the full-grain.
It’s commonly used in making messenger bags, handbags, accessories, jackets, furniture, and footwear.
Bonded leather is like the scraps of leather. It’s made from the leftovers of the hide. The leather scraps are finely shredded and bonded using latex or polyurethane onto a sheet or fiber mesh. You will find it hard to tell the percentage of natural leather used unless the manufacturer decides to disclose it to you.
Often the bonded leather is dyed to give it color and look like top-grain or full-grain. So, be sure to use a trusted vendor or manufacturer that can tell you the truth. It’s often used in bookbinding and making furniture as well as fashion accessories.
Why Do the Prices of Leather Vary?
Prices of leather vary due to various reasons. Some of the reasons include the leather’s characteristics, the origin of the hide, type, style, and stitching details, among more.
As the grade increases, so does the cost of the final product. Also, hides are sorted by the number of natural characteristics present on them. Leather with fewer elements is more expensive since they are rare and require less processing.
Note that genuine leather can be determined by color because it has natural characteristics.
Does Leather Crack Over Time?
Over time, it is normal for leather to crack or peel off. The color finish fades just like paint on a wall. However, don’t worry. You can still repair it.
It’s possible to repair the cracks, but you have to get a professional to avoid causing more damage. Experts of leather offer these services regardless of the repairs needed. You can get any repair service from furniture repairs, commercial service repairs, and marine repairs, among more.
How Can One Care for Items Made of Leather?
Leather items can last long if they are well taken care of. That can be done by regularly cleaning them with a soft cloth or brush then blow out the water as soon as possible. Also, avoid drying leather with artificial heat and instead dry it naturally.
Generally, leather is good. All you need is to be careful when choosing the different types. Once you have the best kind, take care of it by cleaning it regularly using the above tips and in case you need any repairs, do not hesitate to contact us.