Atimeless material, good leather seemingly ages like fine wine. Whether used as a fashionable wardrobe, a home and living product, lifestyle or accessory, it has always exuded one’s personal style. A good leather never goes old. Leather furniture, products, apparel become heirlooms and passed on from generations if given proper care. Looking after your leather range, whether apparel, accessories or furniture begins with a day-to-day care routine.
Vikash Gupta, founder & CEO, Three Sixty, shares few simple steps to help you prevent wear and tear, and extend the life of your leather possessions for years. Follow these key steps to keep your leather looking great year after year:
To clean any leather, avoid direct water, use a damp cloth instead. To clean accumulated dirt, use a slightly damp soft cloth to wipe the surface. Before doing this for the first time, test the leather in an inconspicuous spot to make sure it doesn’t absorb the water. Use only a dry cloth if absorption occurs.
Another important tip is that all products made of leather should be stored away from the sun in a cool dry place. Being a natural material, leather like wood can fade, stiffen, and crack when placed close to heat sources because it can dry up. So it’s important to avoid direct sunlight. Leather tends to discolor from excess heat or exposure to sunlight.
Never use harsh soap, cleaning solvents, detergents, or ammonia to clean stains. It’s important to never soak the stain heavily with water. All these methods may actually be more damaging than the stain itself. For grease stains, blot excess with a clean dry cloth. The spot should gradually disappear into the leather after a short period of time. In case it persists, ask a professional leather specialist for help to avoid any potential damage to the leather itself.
To protect your leather, you can use leather conditioning cream or oil every six months to extend leather’s life.
Vacuum regularly to remove dust and debris for leather furniture. Vacuum in crevices and along the bottom when you wipe down the rest of the surface. For an extra shine, the furniture can also be wiped gently with a barely moist cloth.
It is also recommended to avoid wearing heavily dyed clothing on leather furniture as it can cause transfer of dyes.
If your leather products are not being used, then you should pay attention to proper storage. Store leather in a space away from heat, humidity, sunlight, and dust – preferably in a fabric (not plastic!) bag and/or box. Air leather bags, jackets, and luggage once every few weeks to prevent mold growth. You might also like to take the time to wrap hardware such as zips and clasps in tissue paper to avoid them creating any unwanted imprints on your leather. Be sure to stand bags on its base rather than hanging it up, as this can stretch the handles. Additionally, take care to choose a spot that is tall enough to allow the handles to stand up unimpeded. Doing otherwise can cause them to become bent or misshapen.
As leather furniture and accessories are expensive, it is advisable to buy from trustworthy reputable dealers and retailers where you can be sure of the leather’s genuineness.
Overall, treat your leather furniture with love and kindness so that it reciprocates the love back for years to come.