What's the leather ?

From animal skin, the leather is a natural and noble material. It's a living matter that has unique features because each skin is different. We find leather anywhere : on our clothes, on the leather goods as bags and wallets, on shoes and also in furnitures.

 

From skin to leather

Skin composition in 3 layers

  • The epidermis, top layer of the skin in contact with the air.
  • The dermis, intermediate layer.
  • The subcutaneus, lower part in contact with animal muscles.

Credits : myctc.fr

The work of the skin

  • Skin abduction of the animal, requiring dexterity and experience to keep the quality of the skin.
  • The "fresh" skin is rated according to its quality and defect.
  • Salting or drying for preservation : the skin is raw.

Preparation of the skin

Different steps to prepare the skin for the tanning :

  • Soaking : the salted skin is soaked in  in water for several hours. This allows to reabsorb the water and clean the salt and dirt.
  • Unhairing and Liming :  to remove the epidermis and hair.
  • Pickling : weak acid and salt solutions are used to bring the pelt to the weakly acid state required for most tanning processes.

 

Tanning

Tanning is the step where the skin will be transformed in leather : the leather is now a stable material, which will not putrefy and is suitable for a wide variety of purposes.

 

Mie Borse

This article is inspired by our knowledges and experiences and also from informations found online.