What is blank leather?
Blank leather is vegetable-tanned, brown or tan-coloured leather. This finished leather has a fat content of 4 to 10%, so it’s considered a “moderately greased” leather and comes from cows. Calf, cow, or bull hides are often used to create it. Blank leather is also known as core leather. The finished leather must be at least 2.5 mm thick to be considered blank leather. This type of leather is flexible and elastic, but still sturdy and robust.
How is blank leather tanned?
Plant-based tannins are used to tan this type of leather, tannins like oak bark, quebracho blanco, or mallet tree. Algarrobilla, myrobalan, and other plant extracts are often used in the tanning process. All of our Gusti Leather nature products are tanned using bark from the gum arabic tree. It usually takes 2 to 4 months to tan blank leather. The dying process is done by soaking the hides in acidic baths or using a series of drums or pits. Nowadays, leather is often tanned using a combination tanning method (chrome-vegetable tanning).
What is blank leather used for?
Blank leather (core leather) can have a light layer of pigment, which can be dyed or left undyed. The flesh side (back side) of the leather is finished (this makes it stronger and smoother), glossed, and rolled. The grain side (outside) is painted using a brush colour, so it becomes “tanned blank leather” or “black blank leather”. The grain side of “velvet blank leather” is sanded and used to create women’s belts or bags. Blank leather is easy to emboss. So it’s often used to create riding saddles, bike saddles, belts, bags, or satchels. The leather used to create furniture is called “cantilever leather” (furniture that isn’t upholstered).
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