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About nstarleather

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    Leatherworker.net Regular

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  • Leatherwork Specialty
    Contemporary Leather goods
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    New techniques
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  1. What you describe sounds exactly like a PU split to me, the "nap" of the suede doesn't get much attention, just split and coated. I've seen them come through in odd lots from time to time. You can't always trust the internet, but the term "bonded" seems to more often refer the the leather dust and glue product that you see around. I'm sure that just like anything else the definitions are meant to be confusing and fluid. My feeling is that there just isn't a way to make a PU split that will last, it's just an inherently short lived product. I think it's impossible to permanently adhere with glue two layers of almost anything that will have to stay flexible over an area. The "top" layer will always begin to separate, and then quickly deteriorate. Even outside of leather, I can't think of anything that uses two glued together layers in a sheet that has to endure flexion forces that will last. Anything like that will tend to separate in the center and "bubble" In the world of clothing, high end suits are canvased (the stiffening center layer is stitched by hand), whereas the cheap ones are fused (glued), after a few years of dry cleaning and wear, they start bubbling as the bond wears out.
  2. Seems to be the most "objective" way to do it, though some defects are worse than others.
  3. Rockyaussie, congrats on your success in that case. I think it's pretty obvious you were dealing wuth some sort if finished split, though I don't think it was a lack of preparation to the bonded part that killed longevity. In my experience, just the idea of trying to make a split (suede) smooth is flawed. Every time I see a finished split, the finish deteriorates even without use over the years. I liken it to trying to "paint carpet" until it looks smooth, though it could look smooth at first, over time with very little use, the underlying fuzziness will become apparent.
  4. Looks beautiful, yes it is the leather I have labeled Essex scrap in the "classifieds section" but I have since had some doubts that it is actually Essex. I did buy Essex hides from the same supplier and the color matches, however the back is different. So TLDR, it's pretty, quality leather (from a USA tannery) but the exact tannage is not 100% clear.
  5. Like the analogy in the post, the better the restaurant, the more they will tell you about the cut of meat.
  6. Suede, sueded leather, etc... I just put "What is suede" in my FAQ and leave it at that... Interesting points. I'm not sure if "PU Leather" always means "completely fake or can refer to a PU Split, like I've pictured? That's why I didn't say "PU Leather" in the post... either way avoid it. PU splits definitely are a thing. As to imperfections, it's a matter of taste really. I have wholesale customer who will send back anything that has the slightest wrinkle or natural marking, but I have other customers think that anything I make that's a "little too perfect" isn't real leather. As to labeling, interesting how the rules change, so buyer beware.
  7. Yes about 1hr south of Charlotte.
  8. We can't get too crazy with the public with terms but there's a balance that lets us still be accurate. BTW I don't say "leather and suede" like we did back then...we actually haven't packaged our products in years. Thanks for the correction.
  9. Check the ones I don on my site, it might give you some ideas.
  10. With the PU thing, it's kind of a two edged sword, when I describe a product I'd much rather type pull up and eliminate confusion. That's because if I type "PU Leather purse" or "PU leather wallet" into a google search, all the image results are "polyurethane" not Pull up, so I'd rather customers avoid PU, as a rule, than indicate that it might be a good thing. Now when I buy leather, our supplier might use "PU" for Pull Up or "FG" for Full Grain (my supplier does), but they're dealing with someone with a knowledge base. As to bonded leather, I left it out because most of the articles in the search results, as well as Saddleback's viral description of leather grades- seem to be referring to a finished split when they talk about "Genuine Leather", they call it a separate class of leather and an industry term. In the articles also talk about taking off the top and adding layers, not grinding it up and adding glue (sounds like a finished split to me). I wanted to correct the common perception, not get into how bonded leather is also crap, though I'm sure I'll get around to calling out bonded leather for what it is in another post. Sorry about the typos... still getting used to doing better proof-reading. I hear you on the idea the "defects" pushed into the positive column when people talk about their products. Yes there is a place for "character" in some products and some settings but I'd say 8 out of 10 customers would prefer as close to flawless as we can get. Do you have your own blog? Speaking of flaws, I just got in some of Horween's Dublin (in an odd lot), it's kinda neat looking but way rough, it's a leather where the "charming" marks are meant to be very prominent. It's kinda interesting, but it would take the right product and the right customer to make it into something cool.
  11. Looks good, it the crown 2-piece? I ask because of the seam. The hats I make have the seam in the back.
  12. Hey folks, I've started my own leather work blog and made a post about how most of the info on "Genuine Leather" in the first page of search results is pretty much wrong. Most of you veterans of the craft know this, but let me know what you think: https://nstarleather.wordpress.com/2017/05/16/genuine-leather-has-become-a-4-letter-word/
  13. That was kinda the plan, educate 'em! Kinda why I didn't do a detailed "tutorial of each.
  14. Thanks keeping it simple for the first post.