Subdivisions of Leather



Belly F or G
Single Bend D or E
Double Back B+C+D+E+A
Side A+B+D+F or A+C+E+G
Back A+B+D or A+C+E
Double Shoulder B+C
Single Shoulder A+B or A+C



Buying leather can be much easier if you understand what the different types of leather are used for, how different leathers are tanned and how skins are sold. If you still have questions, please call us at 02 99977778

Back – A side with the belly cut off, usually 15 – 18 sq. ft.

Split – This refers to the undersection of a piece of leather that has been split into two or more thicknesses. Splits are usually embossed with a design and finished or sueded.

Suede Split – Leather that has been sanded to produce a nap.

Grain – The epidermis or outer layer of animal skins.

Full Grain – Leather that is just as it was when taken off the animal. Only the hair has been removed and the grain or epidermis is left on.

Note: Only full grain, vegetable tanned leather will absorb water and tool correctly. All leather carving and tooling must be done on full grain leather.

Top Grain – Top grain leather has often been sanded to remove scars and then sprayed or pasted to "cover up" the work. Top grain is not the same as "Full Grain" leather.

Thickness or Weight – Leather is usually measured in millimetres.  In an effort to make leather a uniform thickness, wet hides are run through a splitting machine. However, each animal is different and there is always a slight thickness variation throughout the hide. This is why leathers are usually shown with a range of thickness, such as,2-2.4mm or 4.8-5.2mm.

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