FULL GRAIN LEATHER

CREATED BY NATURE.  PERFECTED BY DAVARG

elegance

/ele · ga · nce/

Full grain leather has the natural elegance that makes further develops over time.  This makes full-grain leather rare and cherished. 


character

/cha · rac · ter/

Authentic leather  develops character as it ages. Every mark and fold made on it tell us about the places and events it has endured. 


durability

/du · ra · bili · ty/

A unique dual layer structure of full-grain leather makes it strong, flexible and durable. DaVarg Leather is made to last a lifetime.


DUAL LAYER STRUCTURE

ANATOMY OF LEATHER



The unique properties of full-grain leather comes from the dual-layer structure of grain and corium. The elegance and character of leather is due to the tightly woven structure of grain. The lesser dense corium layer serves as the flexible durable base for the grain layer. The relatively open yet interwoven structure of corium allows the leather to breathe and retain moisture, making the leather strong durable and last a lifetime.   



grain

epidermal structure

The epidermal top layer in full-grain leather retains the character of the natural hide. Vegetable tanning preserves this layer and the grain continues to mature and develop further character with age. 

sheen

translucency of grain

The leather grain has a natural shine that reflects and refracts light even when they are tinted deep with a shade. Leather sheen improves as grains surface gets waxed and polished. Opaque leather lacks sheen. 

patina

variegations in shade

Patina is the natural unevenness in shades that gets pronounced as grain layer is stretched and as leather absorbs moisture and oils. Patina develops with age, giving the leather a well-worn vintage appearance.    

GRAIN

Every grain on DaVarg leather is authentic as nature made them. However as the leather get used, the folds and wrinkles develops on grain based on the way it is used and develops and individual character. 

CORIUM

In DaVarg Leather, the corium side is coated to bond the loose fibers and to create a smooth back surface. The DaVarg Makers Mark is then imprinted on the coated corium layer as an approval.

MATURES GRACEFULLY

LASTS A LIFETIME



Natural full-grain leather develops character with everyday use. The grain patterns evolve and sheen gets accentuated on well used areas. The edges round out and leather takes on the personality of its owner. DaVarg Leather is also known for its durability. With the saddle-stitching and edge finishing, our leather is made to last a lifetime.  



Character of Leather

MARKS, FOLDS & SCARS

Care is taken to leave the grain layer untouched and to retain the natural features and marks. Hence, it is not uncommon to find healed scars, insect bites and other marks that shows its authenticity.

Durability of Leather

A LIFELONG BOND

Vegetable tanned leather can last a lifetime. As it matures with character and becomes our constant companion, it would be difficult not to develop a bond with it.

Raw Hide to Full-Grain

VEGETABLE TANNING



Vegetable tanning has been perfected over human evolution to transform raw hide into durable and elegant material. It is still the most classical and traditional among tanning methods and the preferred process that can retain the character of delicate leather grain. The transformation from raw hide into leather happens slowly over several weeks with tannins derived from trees and plants - hence the term vegetable tanning. These tannins convert and bind the collagen proteins in the rawhide, making them strong and more durable. Over time the corium fibers dehydrate, gaining strength and flexibility while the grain layer retains its natural character through the tanning process. 


The time consuming manual process of vegetable tanning has become a highly skilled craft, undertaken only by a few select tanneries. This renders vegetable tanning more expensive and exclusive; and makes vegetable tanned full grain leather more coveted and cherished. Most mass market leather is now made with chrome or aniline tanning due to its lower cost. While they cannot produce leather with the same quality and character as vegetable tanning, they are adequate for lower quality leather articles such as upholstery or large luggage.



Transforming Veg-Tan Leather

PERFECTING LEATHER



Vegetable-tanned full-grain leather starts as a blank canvas and need to be prepared to make articles with it. We tint grain side of leather with deep penetrating dyes that impart the shades into the leather. Unlike synthetic coatings that cover the grain, our dyes alter the color of the grain and retains the character of leather. These tinting also enhance the sheen and patina, ensuring the leather will mature gracefully as it ages. 


In most natural leathers, the corium of leather is often left unfinished, causing it to attract moisture, get stained, or to have its fibers come loose. The loose corium fibers can also degrade the durability of leather. To overcome this, DaVarg developed a proprietary coating that can bind the corium layers and give leather a smooth clean finish. The custom DaVarg shades along with back coating ensures the full grain leather retains its elegance and character for a long time.




Transforming Veg-Tan Leather

MAKING DAVARG LEATHER




Not all full-grain leathers are created equal. DaVarg Leather is made from mature hides with an optimal grain to corium ratio. While this leather will retain its natural stretch marks and healed scars, large ranch-brands or cuts are sorted out. Vegetable tanned hides undergoes several steps to transform fully into DaVarg Leather.   



Sorting & Grading

The vegetable tanned leather comes in various quality levels. The tanneries grade them based on factors such as grain quality, corium thickness, and hide size. We specify leather grades with no branding or large marks to be selected for DaVarg Leather.  

Shading

Vegetable tanned hide has a creamy, pale shade that attracts dirt and stains. To prevent any unwanted staining and to further add character, we tint the grain side with deeply penetrating dyes of various custom shades.

Back Coating

In most leathers, the corium or back side of leather is often unfinished- this causes the corium side to attract moisture, get stained, and have its fibers quickly come loose. We find this undesirable, so the back side of Davarg leather is also coated with a specially formulated layer that bonds the corium fibers together.

Branding

Once the leather is back-coated, the leather is branded with our inner wave pattern and stamp with the DaVarg maker's mark. The wave pattern proves the continuity in leather. The DaVarg Makers Mark is then applied as our stamp of approval on this leather.

Character of Leather

NATURAL LEATHERCARE

To care for a natural leather, we developed all-natural leather care products. EEVEs' leathercare products are developed with Bees Wax, Carnauba Wax, Shea butter, Lanolin.and enhanced with essential oils from Lavender, Lemon Grass, Thyme, Cedar, Vetiver and Patchouli.

DaVarg Leather

NO CALFSKIN

Castello DaVarg would never use calf skin leather in our articles. We believe mature full-grain leather has more character and durability and become soft and supple with daily use. Besides, we want those calves to grow up and live a long life to become beautiful cows and bulls.

EEVEs' LeatherCare

CARING FOR DAVARG LEATHER



Full-grain leather is similar to human skin in many ways. It is designed to absorb and retain oils through its open epidermal structure. Without necessary moisture, leather can dry out, crack and degrade. To protect and to enhance its elegance and character, leather needs to be properly conditioned to retain natural oils and repel excess moisture. DaVarg's exclusive EEVEs' LeatherCare products are made from natural ingredients, with a formulation that was originally developed as a moisturizing cream and is suitable for any natural full-grain leather.  



Know Your Leather

WHEN LEATHER IS NOT LEATHER



Unfortunately, most leather in market are actually not full-grain leather, and some are not even made from animal hide. Unknowingly or not, we acquire them without fully realizing what they are made of and wonder why they are not hold up to our expectations.Since there are no strict industry regulations to define what exactly constitutes leather, a great many items in market are made with these artificial materials, and can still claim to be made of leather. 


Leather that is processed out of split corium or manmade materials are also called split leather, corrected leather, embossed leather, coated leather, suede, Napa leather, painted or patent leather, bonded leather, or reconstituted leather.If you are unsure of the origin of the 'leather', do your research and proceed with caution. If the manufacturer does not state explicitly it is authentic full-grain leather, chances are that it is one of the inferior man-made leathers. 



Authentic Leather

IDENTIFYING REAL LEATHER


Artificial leather can very well imitate full-grain leather and deceive even experienced leather connoisseurs.  To distinguish between artificial leather and natural full-grain leather, we have to  look for multiple characteristics.   Even with these guidelines, the best option is to buy leather from reputable sources who would stand by their leather.



Scent of the leather

Vegetable tanned leather has a clean, woody aroma. If the leather smells like acetone or other organic chemicals it could be analine or bonded leather.

Monotonous patterns

Full grain leather does not come with patterns. In genuine leather, the wrinkles, folds and patterns are developed as the articles see some usage. Monotonous, repetitive grain patterns are a result of embossing with rollers on a synthetic layer over a fabric or split leather layer.

Opaque Coatings

Opaque pigments on synthetic layers hide the imperfections and gives a leather-like appearance on substandard splits with embossing. Our general recommendation is to stay away from opaque leather. Keep in mind, if you cannot see the translucency of grains on leather, chances are that it is not full-grain.

Embossing and prints

Fake embossing and prints such as crocodile or ostrich skin patterns are common in cheaper imitation leather. This is often done the mask the uniformity in coating and other imperfections. Even in high-end leather articles, split corium layer is coated with a synthetic pigments and printed with logos and brand names.

Thin grain layer

Thin top grain without corium will disintegrate quickly. So if the leather is thin (less than 1mm) it is most probably has no corium but could be bonded leather with a manmade substrate, such as fabric. If you come across very thin leather, look for synthetic backing to support it.

Uniformity of patterns

Artificial leather is often mass-produced with a regular and uniform texture. This is evident in most upholstery leather where the color is even and grain patterns are well defined and consistent. On the other hand, authentic full-grain leather is seldom uniform. The raw hide's scratches, scars, insect bites, and natural stretch marks are all retained on full-grain leather with the shades variations in the leather patina.

Lack of pull-up

“Pull up” on leather is seen as a color variation when the leather is bent or folded. As the grain and corium expands, the moisture in leather redistributes and imparts a lighter shade on the folds. If the leather does not show any pull up effect, there is a good chance that it is not full-grain leather. Excessive pull-up is a sign of oiled latigo leather.

Non-porous grain

Painted and coated leather does not absorb conditioners such as EEVEs' Leather Balm, since the coatings makes the leather less permeable. If the leather surface does not effectively absorb EEVEs' leather balm, it is likely that it is painted or a synthetically coated leather.