Nappa Cowhide

Nappa Cowhide

How many times have we seen the advertisement claiming "Genuine Leather" or "quality of skin." What exactly make and model, or leather quality, how do I not get ripped off?

First, what is leather. Leather simply stated is the skin of an animal. So, while the material is made of animal skin, they can claim "Genuine Leather". Leather quality is a different story. After reading this, you will be able to watch a leather garment and tell immediately whether or not quality.

You may or may not have noticed that the flea markets, grocery stores, drug stores and department store have been selling the "Genuine Leather" Coats, jackets, backpacks and suitcases. Son of a mosaic pattern, and usually striped. Usually are of lambskin leather and sold at cheap prices unreal. There is nothing wrong with sheepskin. In fact, it is the leather of choice for any skin that is placed near skin. The coating is also an advantage when used for comfort or insulation. The mosaic design is the first indication that this is of poor quality leather. The design mosaic is that wiped out the remnants of the floor of the manufacture of other garments, fed through a machine to sew the pieces together, he created another piece of leather and made more garments. The skin itself could be made of different qualities.

Let's talk about grades of leather. There are 3 primary grades of leather:

Grade 1 or "full bloom" clear, flexible and clean, is consistent in color, has the highest yield of over 90% and the smoother surface is.

Grade 2 is less consistent in color, has a yield of 78% and the surface is slightly imperfect.

Grade 3 is a very inconsistent and splotches of color, has a yield of 40% and the surface is very imperfect and feel strong, in part by the excessive coating needed to hide imperfections.

These grades are standard no matter what kind of animal the leather came from. There are lots of different types of animals used for leather. Everything from lamb to cow, and alligator ostrich. The two most popular for use in garments are lamb and beef. For the sake of this article we will discuss these two.

Skin lamb

The softer, thinner, softer skin. A buttery texture and fine grain. Stretching well and tends to form again after use – is a type of memory. Drapes well, flows, and has good movement – very form-fitting.
High-end leather-wear. Classy and are more like fashion.

CP LAMB TOUCH or cow nappa

Thin, soft and flexible – in close look and feel to lamb but is not lamb. A smooth finish and finer textured cowhide. Lightweight – has good movement and draping ability.
Sportswear and clothing. Dressed up, fashionable. Coats skirts, pants and jackets.


Very hard wearing and durable. The heaviest cowhides. Very sensitive skin texture and grainy.
Mostly outerwear – especially jackets. Weekend casual, ready to use.

Ok, we now know that different levels and types of leather, how do we know we have the good stuff? First, use your eyes. A very good way to know if you are buying a piece of high quality leather is to look at the seams and needle marks. If they seem to be of a different color than the garment itself this could mean that the garment is dyed only on the surface – as opposed stained surface to aniline dyed leather (dyed on both sides).

Dyeing leather surface is very different from aniline dyed leather because surface-death is like adding a layer of paint to the wood. Simply cover up the natural wood surface defects. aniline dyed leather is like adding varnish to wood, varnish allows the forest's natural beauty shine through by penetrating the surface instead of covering it up. The natural beauty of high quality leather is visible through a simple dye, rich aniline.

Check the items set color and craftsmanship. Although all natural skins contain some marks, there should be no spots big ugly in the part being inspected. A good manufacturer of leather garments fur not use 2nd or 3rd grade.

Then use your nose. The garment should smell like leather, not chemicals. And while we're on the subject of chemicals, you want leather that has not been treated with Azo Dye. Azo dye is toxic and has been associated with many skin reactions.

And finally, sorry. It is soft to the touch, smooth. Must be free of any shock and flexes easily. It should not be rigid and hard to bend.

Be sure to read my next article on how to care for leather garments.

Jim owns and operates an on line store of sexy leather [] where he also publishes many articles and information. Feel free to visit our forums and comment on any of his articles. You can find him here []

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