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Leather Doctor

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SADDLERY leather care kits

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Saddlery leather made of cowhide that is usually tanned with vegetable tannins and is used especially for saddlery. Saddlery leather derives its popular brownish range of color from the tannin found in vegetable matter such as tree bark. Its exact shade depends on the mix of the tanning agent and the color of the skin. It is the only form of leather suitable for use in leather carving or stamping. Vegetable-tanned leather is not stable in water; it tends to discolor, and if left to soak and then dry, it will shrink and become less supple and harder. In hot water, it will shrink drastically and partly gelatinize, becoming rigid and eventually brittle. Historically, it was occasionally used as armor and has been used for bookbinding. Today it is also used for luggage and furniture including trimmings of luggage and handbags. The leather is left untreated (naked); therefore, it is susceptible to water and stains. Sunlight will cause the natural leather to darken in shade, just like our skin; unlike aniline dyes that fades. It is easily scuff, readily absorb soiling and stain from liquid soiling.