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Horween Vs. Wickett Vs. Hermann

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I'm trying to get my leather business off the ground, and want to switch over to US suppliers. The minimums are a bit terrifying, but I see it as investing in my business.

From what I can tell (I don't yet have swatches from HO) Horween has the best quality stuff for making wallets/bags... WC has a weird 'core' to it and feels super stiff (probably better for tack and items that spend more time in the elements?)... and I haven't yet gotten scrap from HO but I've read on the forums that it's pretty much the same as WC.

Do ya'll have input to which is the best? Does anyone know if Horween makes hides big enough to make bags out of—or anything just veg tanned and not pre-dyed?

FWIW I mostly work with 2oz-7oz hides... Usually 18-25 sq feet. Very rarely go above that oz, but would be happy to go to a larger hide if need be.

Thanks for your help!

Edited by kpkpkp

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I've purchased from both places. Part of the answer to your question depends on what kind of leather you're looking for. W&C makes pretty much all vegtan stuff (not sure if their latigo is chrome/veg retan or not though...). I like dealing with them because you can order one single hide from them at a time. You can have them split the hide to any thickness you want. I have been ordering either their skirting leather which I refinish myself or purchase harness or bridle leather that I have them split to the thickness I want (usually 5-6oz). I also have them stake the hides. Staking softens the leather a bit without breaking up the grain that drum milling does. It doesn't completely soften the leather but it makes it a bit softer than its regular state. You can also order entire sides or just the backs.

Horween is of course best known for their shell cordovan. They also have a lot of other leathers and their leathers or more "fashion" leathers than your typical saddlery leathers. Very nice stuff. I've ordered the shell cordovan, football leather, chromexcel horse butts, and Dublin leather. They have wide ranges of thicknesses and colors to choose from. You can also order retail from their thetanneryrow.com website. The problem is that their leather is really expensive and it can take a long long time to get stuff from them. I'm not sure if you can ask them to do any custom splitting or anything on small orders. I don't know if you can ask for just the back or have to take the entire side. I don't think Horween does straight veg tan, non finished leather.

Anyways, a large part has to do with what type of leather you want to work with. Both places sell leather by the side (W&C will do backs as well. They basically just cut the belly off). Anyways, hope this helps.


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You could try Horweens Chomexcel, it usually comes 21 to 25 square feet. The stuff is great!!! I

I recently bought a hide from Springfield Leather to make a bag out of.

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