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Leather Quality and Properties

Discussion in 'Classic Menswear' started by VegTan, Jul 8, 2013.

  1. laufer

    laufer Well-Known Member

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    Thank you so much.
     
  2. DWFII

    DWFII Well-Known Member

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    Yr. Hmb. Svt.

    :cheers:
     
  3. sleepyinsanfran

    sleepyinsanfran Well-Known Member

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    Anyone has experience with Horween's Utica leather? And how does it performs in the long run when used to make footwear?
    Visually it looked like looser grain side leather, but I wasn't quite sure. Any thoughts would be much appreciated. Thanks.
     
  4. Sandwich

    Sandwich Well-Known Member

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    Scotch and hatch grain are reputed to be great leathers for inclement weather. However, I don't understand why it gets this reputation. From what I understand its generally the same as any other leather except either folded or embossed with a pattern. Am I missing something? That said my C&J Pembrokes (scotch grain) do very well in the rain, but so do some of other my calf skin shoes.
     
  5. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Well-Known Member

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    Most grains in leather like scotch, hatch and pebble etc are better at resisting water precisely because of the embossing. It seals up the pores of the leather and compresses the fibers making water harder to penetrate.
     
    Last edited: Jan 8, 2015
  6. mw313

    mw313 Well-Known Member

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  7. mw313

    mw313 Well-Known Member

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    @DWFII what shoe trees do you like then? I figured that having one that is well fitted in the instep would be more beneficial compared to the many flat spring-loaded split cedar shoe trees that always seem to be on sale from stores like various mens stores. What about boot trees too? I have only seen ones from Rochester for boots but atleast they seem to have a very solid piece of wood for the front and a higher instep.

    Any thoughts?
     
  8. DWFII

    DWFII Well-Known Member

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    As I said, I like lasted shoe trees I just can't get them here in the States.

    But having said that, the common wisdom here is that shoe trees shouldn't be left in the shoes for but a brief period of time...while the shoe dries. This smooths out the creases some (allowing the owner to vigourously brush the shoes and remove dust and grit) and mitigates the possibility of the insole taking a set.

    Then too, after market shoe trees are generally well ventilated, allowing air to circulate more freely in the shoe than a lasted tree would do.

    As a result...and don't spread this around--prices are already too high...I generally look for vintage shoe trees that I can clean up.

    As for boots...esp. pull-on boots...the accepted thinking is that trees in boots are counter-productive.
     
  9. laufer

    laufer Well-Known Member

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    Forgive me but I have missed out on this sudden change in SF common wisdom It must be because I have been avoiding shoe care thread. When did this shift in common wisdom happen? I was sure that shoe trees (not necessarily lasted) are must have item.
    Why would shoe trees in pull-on boots be counter-productive. I must admit to me it seems just opposite.

    I am confused :brick:
     
  10. DWFII

    DWFII Well-Known Member

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    I don't know, it's been evident on SF since I've been a member. And that's not to say that trees aren't important, just that lasted trees may be overkill. FWIW, I leave trees in my shoes most of the time. Probably because I don't have enough room in my closet for trees and shoes separate. :satisfied:

    As for pull-on boots see [COLOR=FF0000]here[/COLOR]

    --
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2015
  11. laufer

    laufer Well-Known Member

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    Thanks. I am not religious about shoe/boot trees but I like to use them when polishing. As for boot trees I think it helps to have something like this to keep upper in the shape.
    [​IMG]
     
  12. DWFII

    DWFII Well-Known Member

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    Well I guess they couldn't hurt although they seem more suited to an English riding style of boot than a wellington style--they're shaped in the calf area and wellingtons (at least as I know them) are not.

    When you get right down to it, however, I think boot tops that collapse...and thus need a tree...are "missing the point." Construction and choice of appropriate materials makes a difference. We use something very similar to English lining kip--which has a relatively stiff "hand"--and I've never had a problem with boots I've made collapsing. Other makers reinforce/stiffen the tops with a third piece of leather.

    If I may ask, where did you get those top trees?
     
  13. patrickBOOTH

    patrickBOOTH Well-Known Member

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    My girlfriend has this friend who when I go to her house have empty liter soda bottles in her boots to keep them upright. I lol'd.
     
  14. Fred G. Unn

    Fred G. Unn Well-Known Member

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    I thought the SF common wisdom was that shoes should either have feet or shoe trees in them. I leave trees in all of mine anyway.
     
  15. jerrybrowne

    jerrybrowne Well-Known Member

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    +1. I always tree shoes and boots, even if the soles are wet.
     
  16. DWFII

    DWFII Well-Known Member

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    Maybe I'm mistaken...maybe what I read was an "outlier."

    That said, what is gained by leaving the trees in the shoes all the time? Once most of the moisture from wearing has dissipated, it's just storage...or so it seems to me. Anything in the shoes only inhibits air circulation...and any residual moisture creates a petri dish for problems.
     
    Last edited: Jan 19, 2015
  17. laufer

    laufer Well-Known Member

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    These are available at shoebuy.com and you are right they are probably best for english riding shoe trees.

    I think 2 litter soda bottles are probably the most cost effective solution for boot trees, seriously I would not have though of it but i give that girl/women credit for creativity.
     
  18. Fred G. Unn

    Fred G. Unn Well-Known Member

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    I thought it was to help maintain shape and prevent deep creasing.
     
  19. jerrybrowne

    jerrybrowne Well-Known Member

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    +1. That's what I was always told.
     
  20. DWFII

    DWFII Well-Known Member

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    Of course, but if the trees are put in the shoes while they are still damp from perspiration, and allowed to dry with the trees in, the leather will "set" in that shape. Once the moisture is off, nothing is added or gained except that the trees block further air circulation.

    Again, I'm not really advocating one way or the other--I leave my shoe trees in, But the question started (here or in another thread) by comparing lasted trees with third party trees, and I'm just trying to bring my perspectives to bear to figure out what the benefits are.
     

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