at namesake we believe the beauty of the leather jacket only grows as it is worn in, broken down, stretched to fit, and scarred from adventure... however, we know that beauty requires care, so please keep the following in mind:
1. remember that leather is a natural material – all natural baby! this means that variation
in color and texture is a normal and natural aspect of your jacket. although each skin is handpicked for you, small irregularities such as light scratches or blemishes may be present and are a natural quality of the material.
2. know your leather – be aware that different cleaning methods are appropriate for different leathers. also, some leathers are more fragile than others. don’t mistake your lambskin for a motorcycle jacket! see below for leather-specific advice.
3. beware of bleeding – some leather will bleed slightly the first few times you wear it. eventually the excess oil and dye in the leather should wear away, but you may not want to wear light-coloured clothing when you first debut your jacket!
4. prevention is better than a cure – if you will be wearing your jacket outside in the rain or snow, you will need to protect it from harm. a quality water protectant can help both condition and protect your jacket. in order to maintain the natural feel of the leather we prefer water-resisting products rather than full waterproofing which tends to leave a plastic-like film. for protecting our lambskin and deerskin jackets against the elements we love chamberlain’s leather milk water protectant no.3, or for more intense protection obenauf’s heavy duty lp. keep in mind that leather products can change the colouring of your jacket so please always test product on your leather in an inconspicuous place (like the inside back facing).
5. let it dry – life happens, sometimes we get caught in the rain, and that’s okay! if your leather gets wet, don’t stress... let your jacket dry naturally. once dry, condition it with an appropriate leather conditioner. we suggest trying leather honey’s leather conditioner, obenauf’s leather oil, or chamberlain’s leather milk leather care liniment no.1.
6. hang it right – when storing your jacket, use a sturdy hanger that has a little padding to keep the shape of your jacket. keep it in a woven garment bag, in a cool dry place, and whatever you do, avoid the use of plastic bags that will suffocate your leather, causing it to dry out and possibly crack.
7. vanity can be harmful – some beauty products like hairspray, perfumes, and deodorants that contain alcohol can dry out and discolour your leather. be aware of when and how you apply these products when wearing your jacket.
8. clean, condition, repeat – like our own skin, it is important to keep leather clean and moisturized. chamberlain’s leather milk makes the process easy with its three step system. Likewise, leather honey products are a good option for cleaning and conditioning most leathers. please remember to always test product on your leather in an inconspicuous place (like the inside back facing).
our deerskin leather, bambi, is our most popular leather not only due to its soft and luxurious feel, but also because of its unrivaled durability. traditionally used for moccasins, riding gloves, and other utilitarian purposes, deerskin has a long history of longevity.
that said, it is still important to maintain your deerskin jacket by following the steps we have outlined above. all of the products we mention would work well with a deerskin leather. the only leather-specific advice we can offer for this otherwise low-maintenance skin is that excessive conditioning may result in a slightly gooey surface – so use a light hand!
since cowskin is traditionally a stiff and structured leather, we have worked hard to source cowskins that are soft, supple, and comfortable to wear. our waxed camo and waxed black leathers have been surface-treated with a waxy film to break them in so that you can actually move in your new cowskin jacket!
be forewarned that this coating will continue to evolve as the jacket moulds to your body for a truly custom feel.
all of the products we suggest above would be appropriate for your cowskin jacket when applied with care. protectants, cleaning products, and conditioners can slightly change the feel and finish of your jacket so please test the product first in an inconspicuous place (like the inside back facing).
lambskin is known for its luxurious buttery softness and is considered the finest leather. while these qualities make for a sumptuous jacket, it is also more difficult to take care of because its surface can be quite delicate.
the following lambskins we offer are a bit more durable and can be treated similarly to our heartier deerskin and cowskin leathers: slate, sarda, embossed croc and durango.
if your jacket is made from latigo, pewter, or garnett, you will need to use lightweight products and more care. for these delicate leathers we suggest bringing your jacket to a leather care professional.
if you do decide to treat your lambskin yourself we suggest using a protectant that evenly sprays on rather than rubs into the skin.
to clean stains from these more delicate lambskins use a dry cloth (never water), and wipe in a gentle manner. scrubbing your stain will only work it further into the leather.
some of the conditioners we suggest above will work on all types of leather. however, especially with lambskin, it is essential to test the product first in an inconspicuous place (like the inside back facing). when you pre-test, use a white cloth and look for the following results:
- colour on the cloth
- change to colour of leather after one hour of application
if either happens, use the leather conditioner sparingly.
our cashmere suedes are the softest, most luxurious leathers we offer; our nubucks (storm and antique storm) the most interesting and unique finishes – but all this comes at a price. suede and nubuck are difficult to treat and can be easily ruined whether by the elements or a spill.
suede and nubuck is leather closer to its natural form. it has not been finished with a protective coating like deerskin, cowskin, or even lambskin. its almost natural state means that it is incredibly porous, meaning that leather treatments will have a much more pronounced and dramatic effect.
nubuck leather has been sanded or buffed on the grain side to give a slight nap, producing a surface feel that is less soft than a suede, but more textured than a classic leather. nubuck retains some of the natural markings present in full grain leather, giving it a somewhat exotic and wild feel.
suede provides a more uniform, clean-looking surface, with unparalleled softness. rather than using the grain side of the skin, suede is produced by buffing and sanding the layer closest to the fleshy interior.
generally, suede and nubuck leathers won’t require all that much work – as long as you treat your jacket with extreme care, the skin can pretty much take care of itself. the real issue with suede and nubuck is that if something does happen, it is hard to remedy. our storm and antique storm nubuck will better hide a spill or accident as the surface of these particular leathers is purposefully imperfect and will almost act as a camouflage. our cashmere suede, however, is not so forgiving. we suggest pre-treating your suede jacket with a suede-specific spray if you are accident prone.
the last words of wisdom we can give here are that leather jackets are meant to be worn! if something does happen to your suede jacket, consider it an addition to the story your jacket will someday tell.
a great resource for specific leather cleaning questions is leather milk’s leather care blog. in their “how to” series they provide thorough advice and fixes for many real-life leather cleaning scenarios such as how to remove coffee stains, paint, glue, mud and more.
namesake does not take responsibility for mistreated or damaged leather. if you are nervous treating your own leather, we suggest bringing your jacket to a leather care expert. feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will do our best to advise you on the best possible care for your jacket.