matthewb137

Recommended Leather Suppliers (US)

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Besides your basic companies such as Tandy, Springfield, and Weaver to name some, I'm interested in hearing of some other companies you guys use. I'd preferably like to start sourcing leather from smaller, much more high quality companies/tanneries. Or even if there's any in other countries that have a decent shipping cost overseas. Give a shout with who you use or who you know. It's greatly appreciated!

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I frequented Maverick Leather Company (were in Petaluma, CA... now in Bend, OR). Wonderful people, good product line (Horween CXL, more). 877/845-0080. www.maverickleathercompany.com

Now I shop at the Hide House in Napa, CA. Fantastic selection of leather, great customer service. 800/453-2847. www.hidehouse.com

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Depends on what part of the country you are in. In the SouthEast, there aren't many options outside of Tandy. They are a 3-4 hour drive away, but I can get an order in 2 days. I'm giving RJF a try, but he's upstate N.Y. There is also The Leather Guy, but I have yet to see anything I really want from him. The Buckle Guy is a good place for hardware, but they also have better tanned leathers.

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Where you buy, in part, depends on what you are looking for .. If you want vegetable tanned leather, there are two tanneries left in the US and both make great leather - and you can buy from them directly - both offer tooling leather, saddle skirting, bridle leather, etc.

Hermann Oak is considered by many to be the best, but there is a minimum order which is a bit much for most hobbyists.  

Wickett & Craig is the other veg tannery and they also sell to the public with no minimum quantity.  

Bill

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Where you buy also has to do with quantity as well PHB international is my go-to guy but usually talking at least 500ft at a time.

 

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I'm from the northeast US. Northeast PA to be exact. But due to my work schedule I usually just have everything shipped to me rather than go and get it myself. I usually get thicker leather (about 10oz) for the radio straps, helmet bands, etc I make, but am looking for something more 13-15oz in weight. I'm also on the hunt for a good exotic supplier such as gator. Watches have always been a big passion of mine, so I'm looking at getting into watch bands when the time comes. I'd also like a good English bridle supplier for wallets and such. So really I'm looking for

1) good, heavyweight leather such as Hermann Oak which I have a side of now, but it wasn't too great (although that may be because it was from Tandy)

2) a good exotic supplier

3) a good supplier for English bridle

4) a horween supplier for further down the road

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keplerts   

American Leather Direct.  Aleatherd.com

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TwoCelts   

I use Zack White. They have a huge selection of just about everything and are reasonably priced.

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alpha2   

I just tried Hide House for the first time. They transposed two numbers on the part number for my 7/8 premium tooling double shoulder, sent Tobacco 9/8 dbl shoulder, I caught it when I saw their tracking info, called them and just missed the fedex pickup, but they cancelled the delivery and immediately sent the proper stuff...or so I thought. It was labelled 7/8, but it was about 50% or more 5/6, the most of the rest 6/7, with only the top right corner actually 7/8. Trying to decide what to do now. I don't need almost an entire order of 5/6 - 6/7, I have that, I need a double shoulder of at least mostly 7/8! What has been your experience with the weight of the leather being at least mostly what you need, and ordered?

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3 hours ago, alpha2 said:

 they cancelled the delivery and immediately sent the proper stuff...or so I thought. It was labelled 7/8, but it was about 50% or more 5/6, the most of the rest 6/7, with only the top right corner actually 7/8. Trying to decide what to do now. I don't need almost an entire order of 5/6 - 6/7, I have that, I need a double shoulder of at least mostly 7/8! What has been your experience with the weight of the leather being at least mostly what you need, and ordered?

Call them and tell them just that. Followed by strike 2. Then ask them what they want to do.

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On 7/26/2017 at 0:29 PM, matthewb137 said:

1) good, heavyweight leather such as Hermann Oak which I have a side of now, but it wasn't too great (although that may be because it was from Tandy)

2) a good exotic supplier

3) a good supplier for English bridle

4) a horween supplier for further down the road

This is everything I have gleaned from this site, other's tales, and my own experience.

1) The "best" Hermann Oak is ordered directly from HO, as that's the only way to guarantee the highest quality, properly- graded HO. Tandy does NOT sell Hermann Oak, although they try to confuse customers with their nomenclature; many have purchased veg tan from Tandy they were happy with, but it almost always costs more than quality materials from WC, HO, or others. Purchasing smaller, real-world amounts of HO seems to have uneven results, and you can research many recent threads on this site about other's experiences. Wickett and Craig is very high quality, and can be purchased direct from the tannery, although they also have resellers. 

2) I don't care for exotics/ the reasons behind them, so I won't even try. 

3) True English Bridle is a British leather product, like Clayton's Sedgewick, and can be sourced direct in a huge quantity; they just posted something on here the other day about seconds being available soon to Americans. Moore Pearsall in Canada sources Clayton's products ( tannerywarehouse.com , although their website isn't terribly customer-oriented, but their employees are very knowledgeable). American- made "English" style bridle is tanned at HO, WC, and Thoroughbred Leather, among others, and can be purchased through the tanneries or via resellers. 

4) Horween can be purchased directly from Tannery Row; it can be pricey, and you must plan ahead, as your order will take weeks/ months, but you will, again, be purchasing a top-quality product, in exactly the tannage/color you require. Horween can also be purchased from resellers and smaller shops, most notably Maverick, which usually deals with 2nd-quality sides, but in some tannages/colors receives over-runs and closeouts of better quality; the Buckleguy currently sells Horween by the cut piece. 

Individual sellers often pop up on this board selling excess product, scraps, and things they just want to clear out, in the Classified section; you have the power of the community keeping them above-board.

Hopefully this helps someone, as questions like this come up all-to-often.

- Elizabeth

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All right! USA is sorted for leather...

Now what about the rest of the world?? 

I've only ever bought from Tandy UK and that's not great.  Would love to have a couple of other suppliers like you guys?

Anyone? Anyone?

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gary   

Kings county leather,

Even though it says watch straps, there is a list of uk suppliers in ...

 

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Looks like you've got it essentially correct, Elizabeth.  There are indeed some sellers that sell first quality HO and Horween, but there's a bit of research to find out who's who in that respect.

  I would add that Tandy announced a few days ago via their YouTube channel that they are now carrying in stores Sedgwick in black, brown and chestnut.  It has yet to show up on their website, and I have not yet made it to the local shop to confirm that.  Being Tandy, however, I suspect that they will be asking top dollar for it and I'd be sure to check the quality - It wouldn't be unusual for them to charge the highest prices for second quality.

Bill

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terrymac   

One additional source for Sedgewick in USA is Booth and Co located in Boston (I think)  Top of the line and good service. Quite the leather.  I had a scrap piece that I just threw out on a table outside and left for six weeks and left fully exposed to the summer elements and full sun. I then put a little of Booth's bridle leather conditioner on it, and was dang near like out of the box. I can't imagine what a different leather would have looked like. It isn't cheap but well worth the cost. Ken at Booth is a check of a nice guy and easy s y to work with.

Terry

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fredk   
3 hours ago, KingsCountyLeather said:

All right! USA is sorted for leather...

Now what about the rest of the world?? 

I've only ever bought from Tandy UK and that's not great.  Would love to have a couple of other suppliers like you guys?

Anyone? Anyone?

I get my leather from LePrevo

http://www.leprevo.co.uk/hides.htm

 

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I've looked at their site and it looks good, just didn't want to purchase more leather I wasn't happy with...

Thanks. 

I also looked at their hardware, do think they're the best for that stuff also?

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19 hours ago, billybopp said:

Looks like you've got it essentially correct, Elizabeth.  There are indeed some sellers that sell first quality HO and Horween, but there's a bit of research to find out who's who in that respect.

  I would add that Tandy announced a few days ago via their YouTube channel that they are now carrying in stores Sedgwick in black, brown and chestnut.  It has yet to show up on their website, and I have not yet made it to the local shop to confirm that.  Being Tandy, however, I suspect that they will be asking top dollar for it and I'd be sure to check the quality - It wouldn't be unusual for them to charge the highest prices for second quality.

Bill

Bill, thanks for reading and clarifying the info in my post.  The issues many members have in buying smaller amounts of Hermann Oak are confusing/ puzzling, as many seem to gave completely opposite results within days of each other, to the point that, without picking out one's own sides in person, making any 2nd party recommendation just seemed unwise. As for Horween, the OP wanted a general recommendation for some point in the future; most smaller shops get in Horween sides in select styles/colors, without consistent inventory. While this is completely understandable, it made giving numerous, specific, possible suppliers untenable. 

I have also heard the Tandy announcement; the idea that Tandy will be selling Sedgewick products seems suspect, at best, regarding both quality & price. Given the company's historic and ongoing sales practices, low grades sold at premium prices sounds about right, leading to a general misunderstanding of the true quality inherent in English bridle leather. Frankly, I was disappointed in Clayton's/Sedgewick for entering such a partnership, given their emphasis on quality and history, as well as their relative transparency regarding the materials and processes they employ, something their new partner does their best to dodge and obscure, imo. 

- Elizabeth

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Funny someone mentioned Wickett and Craig, I'm visiting their tannery to pick out and buy some Sides Monday since they're only about 2 1/2 hours from me. I heard of tannery row, but I'm nowhere near ready for that cost yet. 

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fredk   
On 11/08/2017 at 7:49 PM, KingsCountyLeather said:

I've looked at their site and it looks good, just didn't want to purchase more leather I wasn't happy with...

Thanks. 

I also looked at their hardware, do think they're the best for that stuff also?

I've been buying from LePrevo for 17 years - never had a problem with any leather. I tell them the thickness, square footage and type I want and let them send it to me. Only twice did I ask for a small sample first

Hardware; do you mean rivets, buckles and such or tools? I used to get all from them as they were the only ones who would post to N.I. Now I buy rivets from China. I still get buckles from them as I like their range of brass ones. I usually/normally only use brass fittings and Le Prevo have good prices. Tools; I bought my first ones from them. Most are good, but they're limited in what they have. I bought a load of tools from Tandy last year, I also got some from China [via ebay] - eg a pair of special pliers which punches 3 lacing holes £35 plus P from Tandy,  £9 from China; exactly the same thing cos they make them for Tandy

You're probably paying an arm and both legs for delivery from UK. Have you tried that Parcel drop-off service? It sort of uses a N.I. post code to a place which then forwards it to a pick-up depot in Ireland - I think thats the gist of how it works

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9 hours ago, fredk said:

I've been buying from LePrevo for 17 years - never had a problem with any leather. I tell them the thickness, square footage and type I want and let them send it to me. Only twice did I ask for a small sample first

Hardware; do you mean rivets, buckles and such or tools? I used to get all from them as they were the only ones who would post to N.I. Now I buy rivets from China. I still get buckles from them as I like their range of brass ones. I usually/normally only use brass fittings and Le Prevo have good prices. Tools; I bought my first ones from them. Most are good, but they're limited in what they have. I bought a load of tools from Tandy last year, I also got some from China [via ebay] - eg a pair of special pliers which punches 3 lacing holes £35 plus P from Tandy,  £9 from China; exactly the same thing cos they make them for Tandy

You're probably paying an arm and both legs for delivery from UK. Have you tried that Parcel drop-off service? It sort of uses a N.I. post code to a place which then forwards it to a pick-up depot in Ireland - I think thats the gist of how it works

Thanks Fredk,

i just ordered a couple of things from LePrevo,  I see how I get on. 

I do use Parcel Motel a lot, They're good for some deliveries depending on each U.K.'s delivery charges. Also they're good for the U.K. Sites that don't ship liquids and some electrical goods to Ireland.

i don't have much problem with the tools, I've seen lots of sites for them and there's plenty of recommendations on this forum .

I find the leather more difficult to get my head around... there's such a variety of it!

Trying to decide which leather to buy when you can't touch it or see it in person... I'm the type of person that knows what I will use the item for when it's in front of me.  I ordered a couple of hides from Tandy earlier this year and it was badly marked and cuts (and boot prints?)and the back was so rough... I ended up buying a leather splitter from china to clean the back of it. I can use it all but I have to work my projects around the marks and every piece has to be split. Another piece of waxed shoulder for belts was like bear fur on the back and a cut through the middle where my belts would be. Pigskin lining also was poor.

Theres a small leather shop in Dublin, but it has so little supplies it's not worth going again. The guy there was friendly but he mustn't have much demand for hides? I bought one hide and a pigskin from him and they're were much better than Tandy.

Anyway... I'm rambling. I don't have a specific project in mind at the moment but I'd like to build up a supply of good leather for when I do.

thanks again for your help.

 

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