Recently an album manufacturer disclosed that the material they had been selling as leather was, in fact, not leather. They said it was an honest mistake and they had been misled by the company they bought the product from.
In light of this, I thought it might be time for a short lesson on leather.
Finao uses very high quality leather. It comes shaped sorta’ like a cow or other animals. Pretty gross if you think about it, as I’m a vegetarian, the whole shape thing can get to me. It has imperfections and even holes. We work around this to find the nicest cut we can. This is especially important in textures like Sagebrush Lizard, Bohemian, Ipinema and Komodo Dragon. We make every effort to cut so the pattern is accentuated. This means there is a lot of waste, a lot of waste! So we not only use top quality leather, but we also have about half the yield per hide.
Leather comes in different thicknesses and the back can have a shag. These thicker leathers need to be “shimmed” to fit better when two leathers are joined or “shaved” when the back side shag would leave bumps in your album. Just sayin’, it takes a lot of material, skilled workers and time to make the best album for your clients.
We also offer our Happy Cow fabrics that are not leather. No mistaking the difference. Happy Cow comes on a roll and has a backing. It’s nice and even and perfect. Because it’s on a roll we can get the maximum yield. Happy Cow products are also high-quality, PVC-free materials and work well on album covers. They also shouldn’t be confused with something called “bonded leather” which is like comparing bologna to a filet mignon. They are simply not leather.
I hope these pictures and this brief explanation can show that there is no mistaking leather and non-leather. Honest or not – they are not the same product and you can’t miss the obvious. At Finao we know the difference and we want you to know that when you deliver a beautiful leather album to your clients you’re getting the real thing.
Please enjoy our iPhone photo tour of our material storage racks. :)
Real leather comes in the shape of animals
Real leather looks like leather on the backside
Real leather has major imperfections we must trim around, see the image below, so we get less useable material from each hide. It also has subtle imperfections which add to the richness of the finished album
Non-Leather as you can see below is easy to spot and there is no mistake that it can be a real animal hide. Notice how it comes on a roll like wrapping paper and how it has a distinct man made texture to the back.