Compared to our other materials, we actually had very little trouble finding the leather we wanted to use for our cases. There was one fundamental decision to be made — whether we should use vegetable or chrome tanned leather or vegan leather. Vegetable came out on top on every single metric.
The process of vegetable tanning leather has no negative effects on the environment because it uses natural tannins derived from plants, which don't create any toxic by-products. Pretty good, right?
Now compare that to chrome tanned leather, which produces a huge amount of toxic wastewater that can be seriously damaging to the environment. Or vegan leather, which requires a number of complicated steps and chemicals, often including the use of fossil fuels.
Vegetable tanned leather is of a higher quality than chrome tanned and vegan leather. It requires real expertise to make and it gets better and better with age, unlike its alternatives. Chrome tanned later can deteriorate to the point of being unusable in a matter of months, while vegan leather still generall has a shorter lifespan than vegetable tanned leather.
Because vegetable tanned leather takes longer than chrome to produce, over 90% of leather comes from the chrome tanning process, but we really didn’t think that was a good enough reason to jump on board.
We work with an Italian tannery that sustainably sources the materials it uses, so the hides it tans are by-products of the food industry. By using those hides for leather, rather than allowing them to be binned, we are taking another industry's waste and transforming it into something beautiful.
We're really proud of the fact that by making our cases out of vegetable tanned leather, we have created a long-life, high-quality product that is produced without the use of any harmful processes.