All CARV leather bags and leather goods are made from sustainable vegetable tanned leather. This type of natural leather is produced using a liquor containing naturally occurring tannins, such as tree bark, leaves and berries, which give it a beautiful look, smell, and natural finish. Vegetable tanned leather adapts and ages beautifully over time as the natural oils are retained in the tanning process.

To keep your vegetable tanned leather goods in the best shape, the following is recommended:

  • General care - Clean any spillages on your leather bag as soon as you can with a dry cloth. Avoid cleaning detergents as they will dry out the leather. If after lots of use you do notice a slight dryness or dullness, you can condition your leather bag using a natural leather conditioner that is designed for aniline leather. Always test on a discreet area first to see if you are happy with the result and be careful not to coat the stitching. Becky recommends Oakwood Leather Conditioner.

  • Weather exposure - Vegetable tanned leather goods can be used in all weather conditions; the beauty of natural leather is that it will age and develop character over time. The most common ageing with this type of leather is a patina (sheen) developing over time when exposed to water and contact with skin oils. This gives the leather the wonderful character associated with traditional leather. When not in use ideally store products in a cool, dry place out of direct sunlight.

  • Water contact - CARV leather goods don’t have heavy artificial coatings so the leather is not totally waterproof, but if you are caught in a rain shower and see dark streaks don't worry, simply let the leather dry naturally. Don’t be tempted to dry your products quickly with artificial heat as it will cause the leather to dry out.

  • Marking - Avoid contact with sharp objects to prevent scagging and scratching. If you do notice marks in the leather these can be gently buffed out using a soft cloth and natural leather conditioner.

  • Colour transfer - While unlikely, there is a possibility of some colour transferring to light coloured fabrics. If you are concerned about this you can rub in natural leather conditioner and rub the back of the leather with a soft cloth to remove any residue.

  • Brass hardware - CARV buckles and fittings are solid brass and so, much like leather, they will develop a patina with use. A regular polish with a jewellery cloth with keep the brass glossy, but you may prefer to let it darken; it's all part of making the product your own.

  • Ageing - Vegetable tanned leather will age beautifully. This will involve softening and creasing in areas that see the most movement and also a slight darkening as the leather absorbs oils from your skin. This ageing is the joy of owning naturally tanned leather and will be totally unique to you. If, over time, your backpack or belt straps need to be tightened you can punch a couple of new holes for the buckles get in touch to arrange a visit to the leather bag shop on Broadway Market in Hackney and Becky will add the holes for you.