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  • Writer's pictureShreeya Pattekar

Autumn - Italy's Season for Leather

By Shreeya Pattekar - Fashion Editor

As one walks through the streets of Florence, the various shades of brown, black and red leather speckling the markets are impossible to miss. These leather pieces are highly renowned throughout the world for their beauty, versatility, and history. The art of tanning these leathers has been passed on from generation to generation and continues to hold an aura of prestige. Before purchasing one of these famous leather pieces, it is important to know about this leather and how to identify it.

How do I identify genuine Italian leather?

First and foremost, it is important to know that the term “Italian leather” is used as blanket statement for leather made in Italy. This does not necessarily mean it is good quality leather, and it is often used by sellers to give prestige to their goods, which may not be as high quality as you believe they are. There are several ways to distinguish real leather from fake leather. One of the primary ways to identify genuine Italian leather is the odor. Genuine leather has a very distinct earthy odor, while fake leather is often odorless or has an unnatural chemical smell. Using genuine Italian leather for an extended period of time will make it softer, unlike fake leather which will start to split. Real leather also has marks and imperfections, it will have its own unique marks caused by the natural tanning process. Fake leather will be flawless, without these distinguishing marks. Furthermore, when examining the stitching on fake leather you can see that it is uniform while real leather will have slightly uneven stitches. Real leather will also absorb water, but fake leather will have the water pool top of the material. The most obvious indicator can be the certificate of authenticity which comes on the tag of genuine leather. Many genuine Italian leather products, but not all, also come with a warranty, which shows that the manufacturer stands behind their product. While buying the product, never give the amount of money it says on the price tag. Many times, sellers purposefully put a higher price on the tags to seem as if they are giving you a discount. To get the best deal for your leather piece, try to talk down the price as best as you can.

How do I clean my leather?

Improper cleaning can severely damage your leather, and it is important to follow these rules to preserve the high quality of your product. NEVER RINSE OR SOAK YOUR LEATHER. Always use a soft cloth and warm water to wipe the exterior of the product. Do not let the leather air dry. Instead, wipe it with a dry, clean cloth. When storing your leather do not put it in direct sunlight.

How do I wear leather this fall?

If you're a beginner to Italian leather, I suggest purchasing a simple, black leather jacket. This is a staple in the closet of Italians and Americans alike, and never goes out of style. The black leather jacket can also be worn for both a nighttime and daytime look. During the day, this item can be paired with any style of jeans, dress pants, etc. The beauty of the black leather jacket is its ability to dress up any outfit. For a nighttime look at the bars and clubs, the jacket goes perfectly with a button-down shirt and dress pants for a dapper look, or a minidress and heeled leather boots.

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