There are several specialties in the leather trades. The trade of trunk maker requires a perfect mastery of a large number of very distinct know-how:
Leather restoration : Stains on leather are caused by humidity or UV. The restoration consists in sublimating a preserved leather. The particularity of leathers is that they are unique, fragile and delicate, they do not all react in the same way. You have to be patient and adapt to each piece using different preservation techniques.
Replacement of leathers: We keep the original leathers as much as possible. However, the rotting cracked leathers are replaced and patinated in line with the leathers preserved.
The manufacture of our leather articles is carried out as at the time, in a completely traditional way. It is the know-how of the saddler. We trained with former craftsmen from Maison Hermès Paris . As the steps are numerous, this article will not detail them all, only the most relevant, for your understanding.
Choice of leather: French manufacture. We use premium full grain cowhide leather. The natural vegetable tanning (VVN) is a chemical process appeared in the 19th century to stop the rot hides and skins of transforming the leather, making them more durable and flexible. This operation is done in tanneries. The choice of leather is therefore as important as the know-how of the leather craftsman / Saddler. We buy high quality complete skins used for the realization of luxury manufactured products.
Hand Tool: The work is done with traditional hand tools. They have not evolved and are still sharpened by hand.
Slicing of leathers: The leather we have chosen is split until the desired thicknesses are obtained. It will be patinated before cutting according to the desired result.
Knurled claw : It is a tool with a wooden handle equipped with a knurled wheel which prints the locations of the stitches to be sewn on the leather.
Preparation of the threads : Preparation of the linen threads, cut to the right length according to the piece to be made, then waxed using natural beeswax.
Sewing Saddle stitch: The seam must be solid, flexible, waterproof and pretty because it is also an element of decoration. The saddle stitch or laced stitch is the strongest seam that exists, impossible to make by machine. It comes from the know-how of the saddler who manufactures riding articles where the seams are very stressed and must be very resistant and of high quality. The saddle stitch is used on the handles of old Louis Vuitton, Goyard and Moynat trunks.
The particularity of saddle stitch sewing is that it is done with a thread and two needles. In order to be able to use his two hands holding the two needles and his alan to pierce the leather, the piece is held in a wooden sewing clip , wedged between the legs.
Beat the seam: Beat the seam on a marble to embed the thread in the leather the aim being to avoid friction of the thread and therefore to prevent its wear which would cause it to break. Also in saddlery the friction of the seams can injure the horse.
Threading: Finishing hot slices consists of two distinct operations, threading and polishing. These two operations are closely linked even if the other preliminary operations are also very important and influence the quality of the final work of the units. When hot, the thread crushes and welds the fibers of the leather which is essential for the good hold of the seam. The thread is also used to make the decorative lines (net).
Polishing: Polishing consists, among other things, of finishing the slices with gum arabic.
Pampering: Pampering is the last step in manufacturing.
Price leather handle: from 700 euros / piece.
Louis Vuitton Alzer 65 suitcase from 1990, replacement of the leather handle destroyed by humidity in a cellar.
Louis Vuitton secretary trunk from 1915, leather is a living material, which hates humidity and heat. The peripheral belts of the luggage are totally cracked.
Louis Vuitton toiletry set , the work of the ultimate saddler. Even if we talk about restoration, it is actually a deep cleaning of the leathers.
Louis Vuitton toiletry bag the top handle was broken.
Suitcase with 6 Goyard Circa 1920 shoes , the leather handles were broken. Identical restoration.
Trunk cabin Goyard , the leather was stained dry areas cracked and the missing parts . the smell of cigars permeated the leathers.
Vanity Louis Vuitton from 1987, all the leather scratched by a cat. Extreme restoration replacement of all leathers.
We manufacture all kinds of leather objects, from small leather goods to tailor-made jewelry boxes . This unique know-how transmitted by Gilbert Rotival, a house founded in 1895 in Paris. Read more...
Leather : French page