So, you wanna talk about Leather?
For centuries, leather has contributed to the quality of our everyday lives and today it is used in such a wide variety of products such as shoes and belts and jewellery to couches, chairs and car seats. Approximately, 50% of all leather produced is used in the manufacturing of footwear, 15% in the automotive industry, 12% in upholstery, 8% in garment, 5% in gloves, with the remaining 10% in various industries.
Leather is a renewable natural resource
If it is not produced, it would have to be replaced by synthetic materials derived from nonrenewable resources. For the raw materials, the tanning industry is entirely dependant on cattle hides, sheep skins, as well as a small number of goat and other skins; if they are not produced into leather, it would create an enormous waste disposal problem and accompanying health hazards.
For the tannery, raw material quality is of prime concern the world over as the raw hides and skins represent 50%-60% of the cost of producing a piece of leather. A tannery’s efficiency and profitability depends, in large part on:
The quality of the raw materials it sources; However, the quality of the hides cannot truly be fully assessed until after the hair or wool has been removed; The ultimate value of the hide depends on the leather’s end use
Leather is not always perfect
Like all natural products, leather is not always perfect. The quality of the hide or skin is largely related to:
The amount of damage to the grain surface; Damage may be due to skin parasites, related scratches, and husbandry practices on the farm or in transport of the live animal;
Most types of damage can be reduced or avoided altogether by proper management of the animal or the hide; While most imperfections are typically removed from the finished hide, common types of markings that can appear on the leather’s surface include: brand marls, insect bites, healed scratches and scars, stretch and vein marks, and wrinkles due to age.
Leather is one of the oldest, most durable materials known to man
Some characteristics of leather material as a whole:
It is extremely strong due to its 3-dimensional finer weave structure, is resistant to tearing, and it takes more than 200 points of pressure to puncture leather-covered furniture; Most experts give leather an average life of four times that of textile products; By its nature, leather is not flammable. It is the only material that meets the high standards required by the FAA for airline seating without the addition of further flame resistant products;
Leather does not cause allergies. All dust particles can be eliminated from leather, making it suitable for those people allergic to dust;
Because it is a natural substance, leather breathes. Similar to a human’s skin, it maintains the temperature of the room and is porous, allowing it to absorb and evacuate moisture from its surface, as well as to allow air to move freely through it while vinyl and syntheticback fabrics can trap air;
Leather molds to a form, but will not stretch out of shape. Like a favourite pair of jeans, it conforms to the body shape and becomes more comfortable with each use. Only leather ages so gracefully, becoming more supple and beautiful throughout its years of uses;
Leather is the easiest type of furniture to care for. It needs only occasional dusting/ vacuuming or for a more thorough cleaning; You should clean leather every 3-4 months!