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Has anyone used transparent/translucent leather?

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Transparent/translucent leather is a thing! Has anyone used it?  

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Never heard of it. Its not made of mushrooms by any chance? 

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@Handstitched LOL. NO it is real leather, apparently.

Some store called DistrictLeathers.com  sells it in the US. They say it is horse hide or Kangaroo leather. 

Introduced in 2017, developed and introduced in his fashion collection by someone called Shruli Recht - in the Netherlands.

It looks a bit like vinyl. In fact the majority of the search results show vinyl.

Edited by SUP

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mmm, not sure if its 'new', or if they are using an ancient process

In the middle-ages, aka medieval period, before glass was re-invented, they used to scrape veal hides super thin and oil them which made them translucent and the used them to cover windows. Allegedly they were translucent enough to let in a lot of soft light, but they were expensive. Everything was expensive back then. I used to have a piece which had been re-purposed as book page. My dottir has it now

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@fredk, that's interesting!  And that process should be easier to do now and the preservation as well.

Do you have a pic of the piece that you have and is with your daughter now?

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No, I never took a photo of it

What was super-interesting in the process was the oil used. Not the usual candidates such as olive oil but volatile 'ground' oil. I guess it was some form of mineral oil that came to the surface of the ground and could be collected. The window makers were a secretive guild in as much as the process was only known to the members  

and I've just remembered; the translucent leather was used to glaze lanterns up to about the first third of the 19th century ( 1800s). Horn was mainly used but for high quality lanterns, eg.  on my lord's carriage 

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@fredk, Ground oil - crude oil probably.

I wonder whether some of those lanterns are still around. You never know.

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Some leather and horn lanterns might still be around. They were used in mines up to the first half of the 20th century (to about 1945)

10 minutes ago, SUP said:

. . . Ground oil - crude oil probably.

But, not crude as crude, almost refined, the Romans and Greeks used it. Its a constituent of 'Greek Fire'

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Greek fire. Used in warfare at sea, is it not? Oil on water, as it were. Wonder how and how much they refined the oil before using it.

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Let me tell you a tale of 'ground oil'

When my grand parents immigrated  to the US they bought land in Indiana under the 'Homestead Act'. They intended to have a stud farm, them being horse raisers in Bohemia. But the horses didn't thrive. They were being poisoned by the grass. The land was kinda marshy in places. So after several years of trying they sold up and moved to Chicago. The chap who bought their land was called Rockefeller and he bought other land in the area. 

It was semi-crude oil bubbling up through the ground. That land became Indiana's largest oil and gas producer

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Oh Wow! I hope your grand-parents at least got a good price for that land.

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No. Less than they paid for it. We had the paper records up to about 15 years ago

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That's just too bad.

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On 1/27/2024 at 12:44 AM, SUP said:

@Handstitched LOL. NO it is real leather, apparently.

Some store called DistrictLeathers.com  sells it in the US. They say it is horse hide or Kangaroo leather. 

Introduced in 2017, developed and introduced in his fashion collection by someone called Shruli Recht - in the Netherlands.

It looks a bit like vinyl. In fact the majority of the search results show vinyl.

oh wow I just took a look at it. It reminds me of a soft flexible raw hide. I would like to see a final product made with some of it. 

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I was tempted to order a sample, but shipping is $10!

 

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I bought some transparent leather and it smells of LPG!  Or rather, the additive they add to the actually odorless LPG.

On 1/27/2024 at 1:09 PM, fredk said:

What was super-interesting in the process was the oil used. Not the usual candidates such as olive oil but volatile 'ground' oil. I guess it was some form of mineral oil that came to the surface of the ground and could be collected.

Could it be that today's methods use some of what was done so long ago?

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Just checked, so many translucent leather lamps from the East!  Nice.:) Searching for translucent leather does not show them. I searched for leather lamps instead.

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