What is full grain leather?
The term “full grain leather” doesn’t come close to doing justice in describing the beautiful and genuine qualities of this type of leather. If you need a visual, take a look at the photo above. The depth and character that only full grain can offer is just incredible.
When people hear the term full grain leather, they sometimes think it will make the leather look really rough or bumpy. This is not always true. Full grain refers to a single piece of hide in its natural form that has not been altered chemically or mechanically.
What is full grain leather?
Full grain leather is the least-processed and naturally made type of leather. This kind of leather is considered the best and highest quality of all types, because it’s less processed than any other.
Full Grain Leather consists two parts: The “grain” part enhances aesthetic aspects and character to a product that has been made from full grain; goods which are created with these pieces last long as they’re durable too. What sets this type apart? It’s simply because products aren’t mixed or composed with any other materials, which means their natural quality remains unchanged by adding anything else in its composition to keep up its initial look-and one cannot remove imperfections on surface either to obtain smooth appearance! Everything should be kept for instinct only.
Leather products can be recognized by the unique markings they have. There is no two hides which are alike- there will be small scars or bites on them from being touched or bitten by animals and folds in their skin. Full grain leather goods age better and look nicer over time than genuine leathers do, because it costs more money to produce that kind of quality product.
Leather is made up of three layers: The outer layer (the crust), the middle layer (the corium) and the innermost layer (the pelt). A hide can simply be referred to as a “skin”. Knowing this, full grain leather wallets will age better than other types because they’re made with all three layers together
While genuine leather comes from only two layers; there’s also split & reconstituted versions available that use just one piece of material.
How Full Grain Leather is Made
Full-grain leather is made from the entire skin of an animal, whether it be cow leather, kangaroo or any other type. The strongest and toughest part of the hide is just below its hair during processing. Once the hair has been removed during this process, you are able to see natural grain patterns on the material. Leather that uses this layer in particular is called full-grain leather because its grains are tighter at this level – making it great for resisting moisture when compared to other types of materials like suede or nubuck which utilize only certain layers in their process . Full-grain leather incorporates all parts of a hide with all imperfections due to being tougher than some other types.
The grain is the top outermost layer of the hide. It’s what you see when looking at it, which makes sense if one considers that this part is also the strongest. The fibers are very dense and tightly “woven” to protect against predators or other obstacles that would otherwise harm them in their natural habitat.
The junction is where the fibers start to loosen up a bit and the grain transitions to the split or suede part of the hide. A hint that it’s time for this process is when you see small cracks on your leather piece are appearing due to moisture.
The Split (Suede)
The process of splitting the hide down to its thinnest fibers yields a soft suede. This is perfect for clothing because it’s cozy and plushy, but also less durable than other types of wool for example. Still, with a little tender loving care this type of fabric can last forever!
Altering the Hide
Once the top layer of a hide has been altered, it is no longer full grain leather. When this happens, you’re left with any number of different types of “leather.” Increasingly common among these are “top-grain” and “corrected-grain” leathers. These names can be confusing because they sound like their counterparts that come from splitting an animal’s skin into two layers at the tannery to produce one side with all its original grain intact (top-grain), while cutting away everything not essential for strength on the other side (corrected).
So, to recap, full grain leather is the best because it hasn’t been altered. It’s the full hide, not sanded or corrected or weakened in any way. Because of this, hide selection is important, as is the tanning process itself.