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leather and care

Alfie Douglas Leather aftercare

Our leathers are sourced from the best tanneries in the world. We use only premium grade leathers and the majority are vegetable tanned. Some mineral tanning processes are used to achieve the lighter colours. In every case the leathers are chosen for their unique characteristics, beauty and quality. Our suppliers adhere to strict production and environmental impact codes. We are highly selective and the result is a product that will last a lifetime. 

Every single piece of our leather is unique, it has its own grain, structure and character. We match each piece to the function it has been designed for. Our leathers are prepared using natural vegetable extracts from a variety of wood, bark, fruit, roots and leaves. Environmentally friendly with no harsh chemicals, it’s a slow process taking up to six months from start to finish. The end result is a beautiful rich leather made to last a lifetime.

Like us, leather changes slowly over time. Exposure to sunlight darkens the colour. Everyday use, scratches and natural oils allow it to develop its own character. How you live you life, will be reflected in your bag and will become part of your life story. Leather is a natural product and may be slightly stiff to start with. Over time it softens and will break-in like a favourite pair of shoes. The more you use it, the softer it will become, the more it will change shape, the more it becomes part of you.

Treated well your leather products should last a lifetime - Our leathers age gently over time, colours naturally change and darken and each piece develops a distinct and unique character. Here are a few tips to keep your items looking at their best...

Colour Transfer
- With all naturally dyed products there is a risk of pigment rubbing off the straps and bag leather when they are new, be careful and avoid wearing light coloured clothing for the first few weeks. We suggest rubbing with a clean dry cloth to check periodically. You can treat the leather with a neutral leather cream if the colour transfer persists. Also be careful not to let pigment from dark coloured clothing such as denim) transfer to your bag during prolonged contact.

Breaking-in period - Leather is a natural product and after the tanning process some pieces may be slightly stiff to start with. The leather straps will soften up after a few weeks depending on frequency of use. Occasionally treat with a leather conditioner to maintain suppleness. 

Stretching - Do not overfill a bag. Leather stretches out, but not back and it will never really return to its original state. If you stretch a leather bag when wet or very humid, it will move even faster. Carry just the right amount and this takes care of itself. 

Cleaning - Just use a damp cloth. Don't use any soaps or foreign substances. Fresh stains such as spilled liquids or food should be cleaned up immediately. Keep cosmetic products and pens in pouches inside the bag to avoid leaks.

Weather - Try not to expose your product to extreme weather conditions, sun and rain in particular as direct heat or sunlight over prolonged periods may cause the leather to crack and colour to fade unevenly.  If leather gets too wet, dry it slowly at room temperature and retain its original shape.

Conditioning - Regular conditioning will prevent the leather from drying out and keep it supple, particularly if it has been exposed to long periods of hot sun or dampness. Always apply product to the cloth first rather than directly onto the leather and always test a small discreet area. 

Marks and scratches - rub with a little pressure from your finger which replaces the natural oils. Ink marks, grease and oil stains are usually not removable and should be left alone or taken to a professional cleaner. 

Hardware - Nickel plated items will just need buffing up occasionally with a dry cloth. Brass and copper plated items can be polished with a metal cleaner. Mask off the leather areas around the fittings as metal cleaner will cause permanent damage. 

Storage - Keep the dust bag your product came in for storage. To prevent mildew, never use a plastic bag and store in a cool, dry place with air flow. If storing for a long period, undo strap buckles, fill with stuffing (such as bubble wrap) to help keep shape and prevent wrinkles and cracks.