What is calf leather? | Cicero Leather

Cicero Leather

What is calf leather?

Calfskin or calf leather is a leather or membrane produced from the hide of a calf, or juvenile domestic cattle. Calfskin is particularly valuable because of its softness and fine grain, as well as durability. It is finer grained, lighter in weight and more supple than the hide of older cattle. It is also less likely to be marked by scratches, insect bites etc.

calf leather is commonly used for high-quality clothing, shoes, wallets
calf leather is commonly used for high-quality clothing, shoes, wallets
It is commonly used for high-quality clothing, shoes, wallets, and similar products, as well as traditional leather bookbindings. In these contexts, just “calf” is commonly used. Fine calfskin is one of the skins used for vellum and parchment manuscripts.Calfskin is a very specific type of leather, made from the skin of a calf, or a young cow, all of the hair is sheared off and then the leather is tanned and treated. But, as with any sort of leather, it always helps to know what to look for when you’re examining a finished product that claims to be genuine calfskin leather. That way you know whether or not it’s worth the price tag.

Look at the calfskin. The pores in the leather should be very fine, and you’ll need to look closely to be able to recognize them, if you can do so at all.

Feel the calfskin. Calfskin is very soft, supple and pliant, and it will be smooth under your touch. There will be a give when you press into it, and it will have a slight elasticity.

In fashion, soft finished calfskin is sometimes described as veau velours (French for “velvet calf”).Most commonly patent leather shoes and leather gloves are made from calfskin because it takes a very high polish and it’s very flexible. Items like vests, jackets and pants aren’t as often made from calfskin because of the cost.

If calfskin is used then these items they will be much more expensive and the price should reflect this. If the item is very reasonably priced, it probably is not calfskin.

Calf leather can also be burnished. Burnished leather is given an antique dressing or stain with a rag. Burnishing and polishing then gives a warm patina to the leather, making it look nicely aged without being actually worn out.

The surface of calf leather is also largely untreated by sanding, buffing, or snuffing (turned it into suede). During the tanning process, the animal’s hair, its insides and the skin’s epidermis have been removed – that’s all.