All about Leather

chrome tanned leather hand stitching leather prestige retan rugged stroom-op leather tanning veg tan leather

“There is much is more to leather than most people think. Like wine or coffee, there are vast differences in quality, craftsmanship, origin, character, aging and effect.”

Leather tanned exclusively for Stroom-op

Prestige Brown

CHARACTER: This leather has a fairly consistent colour and does not scratch easily. The texture is slightly glossy and smooth to the touch. Natural defects ie scratch, tick and fatlines are faintly visible.

TANNING PROCESS: Chrome tanned, full grain bovine leather. Dyed through with anti scratch protection layer.

Rugged Brown 

CHARACTER: This leather has a soft oil pull-up effect with a slight colour variation. The texture is soft and velvety to the touch. Scratch marks will appear after usage which increase the vintage look. Unique surface characteristics of the hide remain visible such as scratch, tick and fatlines.

TANNING PROCESS: Chrome tanned using water based chemicals. Full aniline finish using only dyes and waxes and no pigments or surface coating.

Other leather types & colors available

Although Stroom-op carries a variety of other colours and types of leather, the character and/or thickness of these leathers might not be suitable for the item you are interested in. Kindly enquire via email if you are interested in a specific colour.

Any more questions?

Is all leather sourced from suppliers in RSA?

Yes, only from excellent reputable suppliers. See a certificate from our supplier African Gameskin.

How long does it take to complete a piece?

When the design is in place, smaller items like leather labels take just a few minutes to complete. Our bigger/more complex items need a couple of days to complete.

Sewing machines or by hand?

Hand stitching is the preferred method of sewing but we use machine stitching in rare instances like the installing of zips and on long straps.

What does tanning mean?

Tanning is the process of treating skins to produce leather or the method of turning a raw cowhide into leather.

How does tanning work?

There are two main tanning processes / two main types of leather:


Utilizes tannic acids that are found in plants and has a lengthy production time (up to 6 weeks). This leads to high cost. It is called “vegetable” because of the natural materials used in the tanning process like tree bark. One of the oldest methods of tanning known to man.


This is the most popular/common way of tanning leather because it is a quick method, and can produce a product in a few days. The hides are dyed in acid, salt, chromium sulfate and other chemicals. It's a popular method of tanning because it's quicker than vegetable tanning and results in a softer, more pliable leather.


There is also a “re-tan” process and it goes by many names such as “vegetable retan / semi-vegetable / half-veg / combination tanned / half-tanned”.

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