It started with an old leather belt.
Mr. DaVarg had a leather belt and it was getting old. He wanted a new one.
Unsatisfied with the 'artificial genuine leather' belts he purchased, he took that old belt to a leather-craft shop in Dallas, Texas. The salesperson was helpful and explained to him that the belt was made from Vegetable Tanned Leather. That evening, Mr. DaVarg came home with a full side of cowhide and created a custom leather belt. The belt did not turn out good, but he was proud. With plenty of leather left over, he made some key chain tags and tinted them. As he used these tags, he got more interested in the way full grain leather matured over time.
There were few problems- the pale tan grain of cowhide could get dirty every easily and the backside (corium side) was left unfinished. The leather itself had lots of insect bites and deep scars and branding marks. Mr. DaVarg wanted to perfect the leather further and started working with tanneries in USA for better quality cowhide. He then worked with son on finishing leather to the exact colors he wanted. After about two years , they came up with the exact 5 shades and formulated a proprietary coating on the corium side to give a clean finish. They tested this leather for durability and found that the shades and corium coating stood up to daily use.
The 20 year old belt that launched Castello DaVarg. The aging and pull-up marks can be seen on the leather.
The first key tag made by Mr. DaVarg. An early version of Helmet Logo was hand craved on the leather with a pencil.
Satisfied with the leather, Mr. DaVarg turned his attention to stitching. Normally, thick full-grain leather is sewn by ‘lock-stitch' sewing machines. Machine made lockstitches are inherently weak, since the threads form loops, and does not cross over to both sides. This causes the entire stitch length to unravel by just pulling the thread on one side. So he studied how leather goods were made before sewing machines were invented. That brought Mr. DaVarg to saddlery. As he studied saddlery, he realized that the stitches made by crisscrossing thick threads with two needles can be the strongest and consistent.
Mr. DaVarg was excited- now he could craft leather articles with strong stiches that have the same durability and elegance as the leather he perfected. It took a few months to finalize the stitch pattern with type and size of the thread. The thread color was also standardized to create the perfect contrasting stitches across all 5 leather shades. The result is the perfect 'red-line' stitch pattern that you now see in every DaVarg article.
Mr. DaVarg did all this work as a hobby, without serious plans of selling the articles he created. He merely created them for himself - it was all fun. That changed in 2012, when he made some cases for his friends, and they convinced him to create an online shop. The company was called ‘House of the Varg’ or Castello DaVarg- after the family name.
Today DaVarg designs and leather are appreciated in over 32 countries. They are shipped from Texas around the globe bearing the DaVarg quality seal- “Full Grain Leather. Crafted in USA’