Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › Leather Quality and Properties
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Leather Quality and Properties - Page 57

post #841 of 2219
Originally Posted by dbhdnhdbh View Post

Really simple question here.

How does pricking or fudging tighten the stitches? Pressing down on the welt would seem to make the stitches looser, if one managed to move the leather much at all.

If one wanted the stitches tighter, why not pull them tighter when stitching rather than go back later and fudge or prick?

I kind of answered that in response to another post but fundamentally the stitches, by tradition are supposed to be proud of the welt surface. Master DA Saguto says that all the old, dead guys--the elder and eldritch shoe gods-- admonish against pulling the stitches too tight. They're not supposed to be loose, mind you, but they will sink into the welt and not be as visible...and put more strain on the welt...if they are pulled too tight.

Neither pricking nor fudging will do much to accentuate the stitches, short of damaging the welt, if the stitching is pulled tight

When you prick up a welt, a large part of what's happening is that leather is being displaced upward underneath the stitch. This tightens the stitches, if nothing else does.

I would be speculating by offering any other mechanism but this is what has been Traditionally ascribed (passed down from master to student, if you will) to pricking--separating and tightening the stitches.
post #842 of 2219
Originally Posted by DWFII View Post

I don't, partially because broadly speaking there is no such thing as "bullhide." Male animals are castrated and often go to slaughter just barely at full weight --young IOW. Select bulls are kept for breeding purposes, and are not slaughtered for meat or hides.

What you see designated as "bullhide" is indeed an older animal--it can be of either, or indeterminate, gender--and the fibers are fairly loosely packed and long--just the reverse of what a good calf would be. As a consequence, these older, less premium, less in demand hides are put through a process that shrinks the leather, compacting the fiber mat...making it feel like a better leather. The compaction will not hold during wetting or stretching, however.

Most every veg tan I use is 3-4 ounce and everything I see that is heavier, is too stiff to make either shoe or boot upper...and I would have to assume to thick to do upholstery with. I'm not saying it's not out there in heavier weights, just that I don't deal with it.

Alright, well thank you for the insight. I do notice the Danish manufacturers call it ox hide, and most actually use a chrome tanned leather for upholstery. I suppose what I am looking for is something with the most natural feel. Seems a difficult task.
post #843 of 2219
My King Hickory sofa is made with insanely awesome leather. Scars and all, aniline dyed. It is aging so well.
post #844 of 2219
I currently buy from spinneybeck and their prima line is pretty solid, aniline dyed full grain natural. Just poking at the brain of DWF because I suspect their is a lesser known manufacturer which produces a top quality product and sells it at a more reasonable price.
post #845 of 2219
I used to get a waterproof Norwegian Ox years ago...and made boots out of it. But it was chrome tanned and stuffed with silicones. And I doubt that it was gender specific but don't really know for sure.
post #846 of 2219
Originally Posted by SkinnyGoomba View Post

For furniture, not shoes.

For upholstery/interior leathers have a look through the Edelman catalogue. Probably the largest selection of this type of leather in the world.
post #847 of 2219
Thanks Bengal-Stripe. I am familiar with them, actually ordering a sofa in their leather soon-ish. Most of their cowhide is semi-aniline finish, the closest thing I've found to what I'm searching for is called SIF leather and used by a lot of Danish manufacturers. The other would be what Hermes uses on their furniture, but I have no idea the specs on it.
post #848 of 2219

We thought you might be interested in some extracts from ‘The Modern Boot & Shoe Maker’, published in 1917 by the Worshipful Company of Skinners. Now the Skinners Company, they received their first Charter in 1327 and are one of the "Great Twelve" livery companies. Note the references to 'cordovan' and 'crup'.



Foster & Son

post #849 of 2219
Foster and Sons,

I believe that's what we call "the Gresham set." I have all four volumes.

FWIW, I also have the four volume set, The Boot and Shoemaker by Bordoli;

Boot and Shoe Manufacture by Plucknett;

A signed copy of Boot and Shoe Design and Manufacture by Swaysland;

All 8 volumes of Golding's The Manufacture of Boots and Shoes--three of which, vols. I, IV, & VI--I have scanned, recognized, and put into digital format for download on the HCC website;

Leno's The Art of Boot and Shoemaking;

Two of Thornton's of which--Textbook of Footwear Manufacture I have also scanned, recognized and put into digital format for download;

And a photo-copied "reprint" of The Art and Mystery of a Cordwainer by Rees.

As well as two of June Swann's books, the Salaman--Dictionary of Leather-Working Tools c. 1700-1950, Boot Making and Mending, Including Repairing, Lasting, and Finishing by Hasluck; and a wonderfully interesting book entitled The Romance of the Shoe by Thomas Wright.

I also have a copy of The Art of the Cordwainer (Art du Cordonnier by Garsault) as translated by Master DA Saguto and published as what's near-as-nevermind a coffee table book by the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.

My collection isn't complete...I'm missing any version of Devlin's The Guide to the Trade (although the Guild has a reprint available)...but I suspect they represent the most significant English language works to be found.

I believe all of these may now be found online as scanned, but not recognized, digital copies. Maybe not some of the more modern stuff like Thornton and Swann, just because of copyright issues.

And as an added tidbit of information--The Honourable Cordwainers' Company is an official sister guild to The Worshipful Company of Cordwainers, a London Guild that goes back to mediaeval times.

I didn't mean this to come off as bragging...none of it redounds to my credit with the possible exception of having put the four books up on the HCC website--but I thought you (and possibly others) might be interested. It's a reading list, if nothing else.

Edited by DWFII - 11/9/13 at 6:51am
post #850 of 2219



Looks like a wonderful resource, not bragging at all. We'll have a look to see if there's anything we have that isn't in your list and make it available.




Foster & Son

post #851 of 2219
Originally Posted by FosterandSon View Post


Looks like a wonderful resource, not bragging at all. We'll have a look to see if there's anything we have that isn't in your list and make it available.


Foster & Son

Would you?! I'd really be interested in filling in any gaps.

I bought, and imported, most of these from an Internet bookseller in the UK many years ago...can it be 30 years ago?! a terrible price for a penniless, dirt poor novice bootmaker. But looking back it was one of the best investments I ever made.

That said, I always felt a tiny niggle of guilt for pillaging your birthright so to speak. Like removing artwork from its country of origin.

That said, I'd jump at a chance to get my hands on a decent copy (not photo-copies) of Rees and/or Devlin...hint, hint. I guess I'm a closet Visigoth, after all.
post #852 of 2219

We'll have a look and see what we've got. Curating the collection, whether that be old shoes, royal warrants or books is very time consuming but we're making progress (rather Richard, our Chairman, is). We have no problem sharing this stuff, it's part of our common history and the more people with access to it the better. I wouldn't bother about plundering our heritage, us Brits have been doing it for centuries, we've even pinched stones from the Parthenon and named them after some Scotsman or other. Best, Foster & Son

post #853 of 2219
post #854 of 2219

Where is VegTan? We shouldn't forget that he started this thread. 

post #855 of 2219
Thread Starter 
Thank you for your thoughts, Munky.


We receive a bare handful of shells every year where both shells are joined in the middle. Most of these shells are rough in the middle and must be cut into two pieces as is typical in our production. Of this handful, a few yield long, smooth shells that are suitable to make a one piece belt.

According to Warmthcrafts Manufacture (Tannery Shinki's own brand), one out of 200 pieces is joined in the middle.
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: Classic Menswear
Styleforum › Forums › Men's Style › Classic Menswear › Leather Quality and Properties