The Best Leathers Come From …?


Leather is tanned all over the world.   Different countries produce leathers with different characteristics.   Here are some examples of those differences.

  • English leathers are highly sort after for fine saddlery and bridle work.   Hereford cattle from cold climates produces a very fine grained tightly packed leather and is considered the best in the world for this purpose.
  • The USA produces some great saddlery leathers and is considered the producer of the world’s best stamping and carving leathers.
  • Italy produces fine grained light weight leathers that are sort after around the world for the footwear industry and belt producers.
  • Whilst Australian cow leathers are considered too coarse for fine saddlery work they are a good general purpose leather.   It is often used by hobbyists as it can be used for multiple purposes.
  • Kangaroo hide on the other hand is the strongest commercially tanned leather (for its thickness) and is highly sort after for plaiting, braiding, wallets, purses and quality footwear.

While most countries in the world produce leather in some form not all are sort out around the world for their characteristics.   Not all countries use cow hide as their primary skin.   Buffalo is used in some countries and produces a long fibre coarse leather.   Whilst it is generally used in cheaper products and saddlery it is not as durable or versatile.


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