It’s not every day you get to make your own leather bag with premium leather material. I was invited by Ecco Leather to their Factory Petit event to do just that!
Ecco is the world’s most advanced tannery and it holds international leather workshops featuring guest product designers and creatives from some of the world’s most respected brands and agencies.
We learnt all about their extensive 53 year leather heritage from some of the best in the business!
Ecco Leather: The Business behind the Brand
1. Tell us about ECCO
ECCO Leather is an innovative tannery with the head office in the Netherlands. Karl Toosbury, a Danish shoe manufacture who established ECCO was dissatisfied with the limited speed, accuracy and reliability offered by external leather producers so he decided that he could do better.
The first tannery was opened in the Netherlands in 1985 and now we have three other tanneries around the world.
We are a high energy team and collaborate together on many different levels in this creative hub. I am always fascinated at how being able to make anything, because everything seems possible.
2. What makes it better than other leather brands?
Besides having outstanding clients and many provocative collaborators, ECCO leather is a tannery with a design studio.
3. Who are some of the companies that you provide leather for?
Our clients are spread across different industries from fashion to products so we supply to a variety of clients; Michael Kors, Louis Vuitton, Apple, Alexander Wang, Apple and we supply about 50 percent of our leather to ECCO shoes.
4. Could you explain what happens at the Tannery.
The tannery includes the whole process from turning raw skins into a finished product: leather. It goes through a complex process and to have a better understanding, you will have to come and visit our tannery!
Designing my ECCO bag – it was like London College of Fashion all over again
5. What goes into the shoemaking process?
The shoemaking process is a very complex process. It involves machines and hands and each shoe is considered differently.
The shoe production factories are really worth a visit, you will be surprised at how many hands are used.
6. Why are ECCO shoes so comfortable?
ECCO is unique because we keep every process in our own hands, from creating the leather to selling the shoes. Shoemaking involves many people and processes and every role is vital. Shoemaking in ECCO is ground breaking and it was the first company that used PU injected out soles.
This is one of the reasons why ECCO shoes are so comfortable. The fact that we make our own leather also influences this a lot. If a leather is, for example, too firm for a certain style, we can easily adjust it.
Here’s one I prepared earlier – my finished Ecco bag
5. What key elements should you look for in a good leather shoe?
Any leather ECCO shoe, is a good leather shoe.
6. What is the most popular type of leather?
Most used animal is cow. There are so many varieties in leather that is it hard to define one most popular type.
7. Which leather is the most durable?
Usually the leathers used for hiking boots can deal with more extreme circumstances, so mostly oiled and waxed leathers. But each leather has its own purpose and therefore is durable for the type of shoe (or other item) that it is designed for.
Talking leather with fellow blogger Breakfast with Audrey
8. What type of leather is best for children’s shoes?
Leather shoes are always best for kids because they allow the feet to breath. Most important elements for leathers for kids shoes are color, price and finishing.
Especially younger children tend to put things in their mouth, therefor the leathers undergo strict lab tests to make sure that everything is kids-proof.
All the leathers that ECCO uses for childrens’ shoes are tested and approved, there is not a specific type of leather that is best for kids.
9. How should you care for leather products?
Of course this depends on the type of leather. A nubuck requires a different treatment than a full grain or an oiled leather and vise versa. Golden rule is to treat it with care.
Like your own skin needs moisturising sometimes, leather also needs it. Always ask for the right care products and treatment when purchasing a leather item, you will be able to enjoy your item for a much longer time!
10. Any plans to go into clothing?
We already produce leather for garments for a variety of brands. They use our leathers for jackets, dresses, tops etc. This can be recognized by our logo, the open O, together with a description of the leather.
11. What does the future hold for Ecco?
The future is now for ECCO leather.
For more information about ECCO and to shop the range visit the website here.