Welcome to Handbag FAQs Part I. I made this video to answer questions you might have about handbags, but either were afraid to ask or couldn’t be bothered to look up. You can watch the video or if you prefer to read, I have included a transcript below as well.
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What is Italian leather?
When I started my business, I didn’t think this was a question that needed answering. Then I met someone at an event who also owned a handbag brand that he said was made with “Italian leather”. When I said, "I use Italian leather as well, where is your tannery?", he dodged the question a bit and finally said “well, I make the leather in India actually. I just use the same chemicals as they would in Italy.”
The next time a customer asked me “what is Italian leather?” I wasn’t surprised anymore because there is so much misinformation out there. So let me say this. Italian leather is simply leather that is processed and tanned in Italy. Our handbags are all made with Italian leather from a tannery in a small town in Tuscany known for its leather making traditions.
What is saffiano leather?
This is also a common question that I think people have, but maybe are afraid to ask. One customer came into our pop-up said “I know it’s not real leather, but what is it? Plastic or something, right?”
On the contrary, saffiano leather IS real leather. The word saffiano is just a term used to describe the cross hatch pattern on the leather which was created by Mario Prada. The leather is treated and stamped with this pattern making it more durable and scratch resistant. This has been popularised by some bigger brands who use poor quality materials which can have a very stiff, plastic-y feel to it.
However, if you have good quality leather under the pattern like we do, you can still feel the softness of the leather.
How do I clean my leather handbag?
This is like asking, how do I wash a shirt. It really depends on the type of leather. I have a beautiful leather jacket I got from a trip to Florence that needs a specialist cream to clean. I would order something online, but test a small area first. Alternatively, I would go to get it cleaned professionally.
One of the benefits of saffiano leather is that it is really easy to clean. For all our handbags, most stains like colour transfer, a stray pen mark or just dirt or dust can be removed with a damp cloth. I have definitely seen people across the street in London with one of my handbags that needed a little clean, but I didn’t want to chase after them. If that was you I saw, just give it a quick wipe and it should be good as new. When you’re not using your bags, pop them in the dust bags they came in. The leather is soft, so if the bag gets a bit misshapen while being stored, you can put some jumpers in them or place a heavy book on it to get it back to its original shape.
I have designed handbags that were made in beautiful, easy to care for materials to carry you through the years.
I hope you enjoyed Part I of our Handbag FAQs. Let us know if you have any questions for me that you want answered next time.