Authentic leather goods (ALGs) are easily identifiable by their purpose, materials, craftsmanship, and style.
The purpose of ALGs is that they can be used daily and withstand the elements. That is why they are designed and made with superior materials.
The materials used are:
- Full grain treated leather
- Marine bond adhesive
- UV bonded, waxed, outdoor marine thread
- Solid brass hardware
All of these materials are present because they work together.
The craftsman must understand the superior materials, know what they will do over time, and make preparations before implementing skill craft. The understanding of how materials interlock to become one cohesive unit is probably the most difficult aspect of craftsmanship.
In the market of ALGs there are three main styles: English, American, and European. I adhere strictly to American (which I call “Americana”) because it has advanced with the use of better thread, better adhesives, and is 100% handmade without power tools, sewing machines, or power burning.
An expert can always indentify the quality of the craftsmanship in company marketing commercials. I’m sure you’ve seen it too – the use of images for association, music, aprons, marketing stories, a glimpse of heritage, etc. Authentic leather goods are about superior materials, years of good craftsmanship, and a little art. Not about association or past history. Simply the truth of purpose. Because at the end of the day you can’t purchase a lifestyle – you either own an authentic piece or a replica.