Creating leather products is a holistic art for me. My wife is a great inspiration to my creative ideas, and my children take great pride in my work. It is extremely rewarding to be able to bring to life, the creations I have imagined.
PATTERN MAKING & CUTTING
My bags are entirely hand-cut and hand-sewn. The density, thickness and softness of each part of the creation dictates which part of the hide is used in an application. For instance, the side panels of a handbag can be cut from the thinner softer joints, for flexibility, whereas the belts, and straps, are cut from the tougher areas along the spine. Each unique pattern is carefully drawn and cut from the full grain hide. I never use a single die cutter, so you can be assured, that your piece is 100% handmade with true dedication and care.
STITCHING AND ASSEMBLY
I spend many long hours on my stiching horse. Though it takes more time and energy, I use double needle saddle stiches on every single item I produce. All of them are entirely hand-sewn. This is a traditional way of sewing leather. It was pioneered by saddle makers, who needed to use a very strong stitch through thick leather. Saddle stitching uses two harness needles at the same time, with both needles placed through the same hole to double its strength and provide support. The saddle stitch is actually more durable than a machine stitch. If a saddle stitch breaks, the second thread will hold the other stitches in place. If a machine stitch breaks, multiple stitches can unravel.
Hardware may be added to your bag, depending on the design. Some choices of hardware include: stainless steel and copper buckles, carabiners, d-rings, and straps. They are all of premium quality. Each is attached carefully by hand.
Every single CSOLLAK LEATHER product is made of vegetable-tanned full-grain leather, which is drum dyed, and coated.
Full-grain leather is the most expensive leather on the market, because of its quality. This leather is the most challenging to work with, but its durable strength, makes it longlasting. It has a more natural look and feel, with patinas developing as it ages. Since full-grain leather is not processed to remove any imperfections, it will contain natural markings accrued over the animal's life. These markings are not excessive and actually add to the character of the hide. If you take care of your product made from full-grain vegetable-tanned leather, it could become part of your wardrobe for the rest of your life. It will also grow more beautiful day by day.
Vegetable tanning is the most environmentally friendly method in the tanning industry. It is costly, due to the traditional and natural process, needing highly skilled craftsmen, as well as a long production time. During the process, they uses mild liquids extracted from natural products like tree bark. The bark of trees such as: oak, chestnut, and mangrove are used. By using only natural tannins, there are no negative environmental impacts. The process can take up to 14 months, and owing to this lengthy approach, the natural fibres of the hide are protected, resulting in a truly beautiful and long lasting leather. It is also the reason vegetable-tanned leather retains that attractive smell and feel. It is the most pure expression of what leather is. Vegetable-tanned leather develops a rich and beautiful patina, which is one of those rare things in life that looks better as it gets older. It doesn’t crack or dry out, and thus has a very long lifespan.
However, the end-product of a vegetable tanned full-grain leather is nothing except extraordinary. In my opinion, this is truly the greatest leather you can get your hands on.