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About Rick5150

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  • Birthday 08/31/1962

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    Londonderry, NH

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  • Leatherwork Specialty
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  1. I do not blame you. It can be scary and fairly risky if not done properly. I have not sealed the dye in any of my jackets after dying them with either Fiebings or Kiwi. I wear them in all kinds of conditions too. I just hit them with a few treatments of Pecard Leather dressing, which is more of a protectant and conditioner than a sealer. The only way the dye has been altered after an overdye is by using wither isopropyl alcohol or acetone. Typically the isopropyl is enough. But I still feel that a rinse of sorts is necessary after a dye job. The first time you put your arm around your wife and some excess dye rubs off onto her brand new white designer jacket, you will wish you did. Maybe it can just be wiped with a damp cloth, I have no idea. I am kind of an advocate for the "all or nothing" method. LOL.
  2. The main problem about the Fiebing dying was that it left a metallic greenish color, but I put my jackets through the washing machine to help age them and it took a lot of the residual unwanted color off. Then the black dye covered it pretty well. The thing about the black dye is that I wipe it on, wait and wipe it off before it dries much so that it just leaves a darker area, but most of the brown shows through. So light brown + black = darker brown. I expect if you either did that a few times or left the dye on longer you can darken it nicely. The difference is that I used an eBay jacket that I got fairly cheaply and if I ruined it, I ruined it. Who cares? I also did the black Kiwi dye on an $800 Horsehide jacket from Lost Worlds, so I am foolish that way. You can see the difference in the interior panels from the original color: In any event, you will want to remove the protective finish if it is on the jacket so the dye penetrates easily. You can actually dampen the jacket with a spray bottle and dye it damp for more consistent results. I usually finish the distressing by treating the jacket with Pecard Leather Dressing which will add most of the oils back to the leather that I washed out in the washing machine. It is a little like vaseline, but you wipe it on lightly, wait a while and then wipe it off. It looks shiny for a brief while, then that goes away.
  3. I am not sure if it is WAY too late for this, but I have successfully overdyed a medium brown jacket a darker brown, in a manner to make it look worn. I used dark brown Fiebings dye and Kiwi black dye with the spongetop applicator. You can see what I did here, and maybe adapt it to what you need? The Fiebings penetrates deeper than the Kiwi dye, but I am reading mixed messages into your request. If you want the aged look, you cannot really use a dye that will penetrate or you will have a difficult time getting those light spots that mimic wear. I believe the Belstaff leather is wax rubbed to get the antique finish, but you can sort of mimic the look by overdyeing. Here is the original monotone chocolate brown color: After the overdying process with brown Fiebings and Kiwi black dye: I used less black where the jacket would normally wear to give it the look that color rubbed off there. Also scuffed up the snap and hit it with black to dull the shine back.
  4. I run a site that mostly discusses leather jackets, but there are plenty of other topics. I am looking for the science behind leather shrinking, and what a realistic possibility of stretching leather back into shape would be. I do not want information that is copied and pasted from Google where someone says it can be done, but was hoping to get real life examples from the expert leather workers on this site. I have personally worked with leather jackets for a number of years and have successfully shrunk leather jackets as much as a full size by soaking the leather, then applying heat. My findings are that the majority of the shrinkage occurs near the end of the drying process when the jacket goes from damp to really dry. I have seen little change occur in the "soaking wet" to "damp" stage. I believe that leather shrinkage is due to the shrinkage of the leather fibers on a cellular level which occurs when the leather is dehydrated to such a degree that the fibers physically shrink. At this point, I believe they are 'set' and cannot be lengthened again without damage to the fibers. Maybe it is more accurate to say that I have not experienced any successful stretching techniques that have been permanent. I also believe that there is some distortion to the leather as stretching leather after it has been shrunk or dried out, actually breaks some of the leather fibers allowing the leather to appear to have stretched. I have seen jackets develop pulls and thin areas from overzealous stretching. Again, this topic pertains only to leather jackets, as we have members of our site who have shrunk their jackets accidentally and are looking to stretch them out again. People have put heavy items on the sleeve ends or loaded the arms up with soup cans to try to stretch the sleeves. The results were slight and temporary as the leather wants to revert back to the shrunken size. I also believe that in the case of leather jackets, too many people confuse softening with stretching. A stiff jacket feels tight, and as it softens, it feels looser, so the assumption is that it stretched. Thoughts and opinions are very welcomed. I believe a jacket cannot be stretched back into shape and for the sake of some site members, I would like to be proven wrong.
  5. We have had a jacket style manufactured for us that features a red leather lining. It is two sided leather meaning that both sides are dyed and there are no linings to hide anything. The "back" of the leather is red, and serves as the interior of the jacket. The problem is that it rubs off on customers shirts. I have solved this issue for future orders, as the leather will be treated at the tannery to prevent this, but I have a couple of very expensive jackets here that I would like to treat. I expect there is a sealant that can be used, but I have never used one before. The leather is thin lambskin, and I know from experience that some dyes like Fiebings can go right through to the other side. Obviously, I do not want the sealant bleeding through and possibly staining the outer surface of the leather. Can anyone offer any tips or advice about how to seal the leather, or what to use and how to use it? Thanks!
  6. I am not sure if this was aimed at me, or the Hell on Wheels show distressing method. I can say that it depends on the customer. All distressing damages the leather to some degree or opens it up to damage later. You cannot help that. While there is a specific market for the stone tumbled/stone washed clothing, I find that it is too uniform to look natural. If the leather is tumbled before made into a jacket, this is even more true. Id looks more natural when the garment is tumbled afterward as scratches and scuffs can now extnd from leather panel to leather panel instead of ending abruptly like when the leather is tumbled before making the jacket. It is still best to distress by hand, in my opinion. Wear should show on the collar tips, pocket flaps and elbows and cuffs. You cannot get this localized distressing by tumbling it. But whether the customer wants a item to be simulated wear - which you can do with alcohol, acteone, paints, etc. others want the jacket to truly exhibit the beat up look as it is more authentic - especially in today's day and age of hi-def. It is the ager/dyers equivalent to the old days when they used to black out someone's teeth to simulate tooth loss - now they can use CGI effects. Thank you. It is great to have a job that one can be passionate about too!
  7. My name is Rick Theriault and I am the co-founder of a site called FILMJACKETS.COM. Just like the name may indicate, we specialize in showcasing, identifying and locating jackets seen in films and on television. During the past year or so, we have also started havinf replica jackets manufactured under our own label. As you may guess, the jackets you see in films are usually beat up pretty badly. When people get a new jacket - even if it is from the exact same manufacturer as the one seen in the film/television show - they are usually disappointed in that it does not resemble the film/television jacket as much as they had hoped. I have been distressing leather for a number of years using all kinds of techniques to replicate the wear you see on these jackets and vintage jackets in general. I came here to see if I can get more tips and procedures as most of the ones I use were made by me or adapted from others. You can see an example of my work in the before and after images below: I am looking for the best way to deglaze leather. I have used 91% isoproyl alcohol and acetone in the past, but have never tried a specialty deglazer and wonder if it is worth the expense. The leather illustrated above had the toughest shine I have ever dealt with and I have 4-5 more of these jackets to do. Ideas are always appreciated. Thanks!!
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