Vintage Leather Care and Cleaning Instructions

To continue leather satchels, messenger, backpacks or leather duffel bags in best condition so that it will keep that beautiful vintage actor there are some easy steps you can take.

If it gets wet…

If you get caught in the rain and your bag gets very wet, dry it carefully in a warm dry area, near to (but not on) a radiator. Direct heat contacting the leather bag can cause it to dry excessively and go stiff. If it is excessively wet, then it is best to empty it and stuff it with something like newspaper to maintain the shape.

If the leather bag dries out after time…

If your vintage leather bag becomes too dried out after time just with the natural elements, it may start to feel rough. It can also be a result of getting wet and then being artificially dried too many times. To keep your leather bag in its best condition, it is important to exchange the herbal oils which will have been washed away. All our leather bags are coated in rapeseed oil, which helps waterproof them and maintain nourishment of the leather.

To keep your leather bag nourished if it dries out, take a soft cloth lightly moistened with sunflower oil, vegetable oil or rapeseed oil and wipe over the surface and leave to dry. This may cause the leather bag to temporarily darken, however it will return to its natural colour when dry. A periodic treatment with a moist cloth will help to keep the leather soft and in good condition for years.

Natural leather Aroma

With new leather bags comes that special aroma. It’s part of the rich experience associated with buying genuine leather. Because of the production process that uses natural oils rather than chemicals the aroma can be a little overwhelming for some. If the novelty should wear off before the scent does then here are a few ideas: 

  • A simple freshener such as Febreze. - A few short sprays inside the bag, being careful not to soak it. Try a little at first and if after 24hrs you need more, then do it a little at a time.
  • Baking Powder – A light dusting of baking powder inside your leather bag will soak up any moisture, which can cause the scent. It can be messy though and leave white marks behind, so be very careful and vigilant if doing this.
  • Essential Oils & Scented Oils – A few drops of your favourite scent on a lightly dampened cloth wiped over the surface can quickly knock down the leather smell. Best to start lightly and repeat the following day rather than starting with too much and risk staining the leather.

Treating Scratches in Natural leather

Often you will find authenticating marks in goat leather. Typical are light scratches on the surface and are hallmarks that make your bag unique. This adds to the delightful appeal of distressed and vintage leather. However if you prefer, these can sometimes be reduced just by rubbing it with your finger. Alternatively a drop of vegetable oil, sunflower oil, baby oil or rapeseed on cotton wool rubbed over the scratch can reduce its appearance (if you really want to!)

Waterproofing a Leather Bag

Your leather bag will have been treated with natural oils that will help to protect it from water damage. This will subside over time and it is recommended to occasionally add some wax based waterproofing leather treatment. There are plenty of these on the market, which you can buy from supermarkets and shoe shops.

If you look after your bag, it will serve you for years!


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