Caring for Leather Jackets and Bags

Articles on caring for your leather jackets and bags.



Saddleback Stain Solutions: Paint Splatters PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by Chris Repp   
Monday, 22 November 2010 14:16

Saddleback Stain Solutions: Paint Splatters

Saddleback Leather Finishes Quick Clean Score for Paint Splatters (1=uncleanable to 10=easily cleaned)

Chestnut- 10, Tobacco- 9, Cobalt Black- 10, Dark Coffee- 9

Key Takeaway: Drops or splatters of paint seem like a disaster but can be safely removed from the surface of your leather bag.  Once you know how, it is an annoying problem easily solved.  Read more for the details...

 

Don't have a Saddleback bag yet?  They're beautiful.  Check em out at Saddleback's site by clicking here.

*All links are affiliate links so if this info is helpful to you please click through my links to buy your Saddleback products so I will get commission from the sale... Thanks!!

 

Introduction:

I've heard the story many times.  You hire a contractor to paint some trim in your home or a crew is working in your office.  Mysteriously small splatters of paint end up on your leather.  What a mess.  

But it's not a permanant problem in most cases.  The worse problem occurs when people use paint thinner or some other harsh chemical to clean the paint off and ruin the leather finish.

I can help you figure the best, and safest, way to remove paint splatters from any Saddleback leather finish.  So let me give you some tips on how:

(You may be thinking who is this guy and why should I listen to his leathercare advice.  So at the end of the article I'll give you my creds and tell why I am helping the folks at Saddleback)

 

Tips on caring for paint splatters on your Saddleback leather:

DO NOT

  • Don't "Google it" for help- I have seen some crazy-bad tips floating out on the web for solving leather problems.  Like this real gem I saw on a website, rub a banana peel on your leather to condition it, Huh?!! Instead find someone who knows leather, specifically Saddleback Leather, and get qualified advice.

  • Don't start with a paint remover-  If you just rub a rag soaked in a paint thinnner over your Saddleback bag you will cause more long term harm than good.
DO
  • Find out what kind of paint was splattered-  It is important to find out if the paint on your bag is water- based or oil-based.  Once you know that, we can proceed to a solution.
  • Be patient-  The best solution to remove splattered paint is to work very specifically on each drop.  It is slow going but a far better solution than just rubbing something over the entire area.
  • Start out dry-The first, and often most effective, means to remove paint splatters is to carefull pick each dried spot of paint off of the leather. Use either the tip of a thin knife or a pin to flick the paint from the surface of the leather.  It may leave a light spot below where a bit of finish has been removed, but we can fix that later.  This solution works best for water-based paint but many times will also work for oil based paint splatters too.  
  • Oil-based paint may not flick off the leather- If the dry method fails then you need to carefully moisten and dislodge each spot. For water based paint, place rubbing alcohol on a q-tip or small paint brush and touch a bit to the drops.  Let the moisture sit for a minute.  Then try to flick off the spots or dab them off with the q-tip.  For oil-based paint, you may need to use a stronger chemical like Goof-off.  Again use it sparingly and directly on the paint spots.  Pick them off as soon as they soften and then wipe off the cleaner with a soft, dry cloth. 
  • Once the spots are gone, clean over the area-  Even after you remove the paint, there may be lighter areas where the paint took the color from the leather.  For the Chestnut, Dark Coffee and Carbon Black finishes you can apply a good leather conditioner to the surface.  Buff it in firmly and the color will dry evenly.  For the Tobacco, try to buff the surface with a dry cloth to even out the finish.  If it doesn't work, you can condition the Tobacco leather but a darker patina may result.  Click here to learn more about conditioner and patina on your leather bag.

Finally:

Especially, when it was you painting nearby, splatters on your beautiful leather bag are upsetting.  But if you follow these steps, and take your time, you can fix the problem.  Of course, if you don't yet have a Saddleback bag to splatter paint on... click here or on the bag above to go to the Saddleback site and get one, they're awesome.

 

Related articles:

"The unique finishes of Saddleback Leather" teaches specific tips on caring for each of the 4 Saddleback finishes.

 

And as promised, Why listen to me?

My dad says my first word was leather... but since that can't be confirmed I'll just say I have 25 years in the leather biz.  I'm now the 2nd generatioin owner of a leather cleaning, repair and refinishing company in the Baltimore/Washington DC area.  I've seen every problem imaginable to leather and am glad to share my experience to help you.

Why Saddleback?

I'm the one holding the bag at the left.  Standing next to me is Chuck Bowen the CEO of Saddleback. 

I love Saddleback Leather Bags (Incuding my Light Tobacco Classic Briefcase).  I love their core values.  I love their affiliate program.  So I help you choose and care well for your Saddleback stuff, Saddleback sells more bags and helps more people, and I make a few affiliate bucks when you click through my links... everybody wins.  

Contact me with questions or suggestions.

If you have a Saddleback leather question I haven't covered yet, please shoot it to me.  Or if you think I'm wrong or want to add to my suggestions, please do.  I can be reached though twitter by @leatherhelpguy or e-mail me at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .  Thanks.





 

 

 

Last Updated on Tuesday, 03 December 2013 23:55
 
Saddleback Stain Solutions: Mold on your Leather Bag PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by Chris Repp   
Monday, 22 November 2010 11:20

Saddleback Stain Solutions: Moldy Leather

Saddleback Leather Finishes Quick Clean Score for Moldy Leather (1=uncleanable to 10=easily cleaned)

Chestnut- 8, Tobacco- 7, Cobalt Black- 7, Dark Coffee- 7


Key Takeaway: If you leather remains in a damp, dark place for a long time, it can get moldy.  Better storage will prevent this problem.  But if it does occur, the mold can be removed quite easily.  Read more for the details...


 

Don't have a Saddleback bag yet?  They're beautiful.  Check em out at Saddleback's site by clicking here.

*All links are affiliate links so if this info is helpful to you please click through my links to buy your Saddleback products so I will get commission from the sale... Thanks!!  

Introduction:

If your Saddleback bag were to get wet, stay wet and be stored in a dark place, it may develop a musty odor and greenish, white powdery stains. This would be mold. It doesn't happen too quickly but if it does you want it solved ASAP.

In this article I want to first, help you prevent mold growth to your bag, by telling you the best way to store your leather bag.

If you do start to get a moldy stain in or on your bag, we can get it out and prevent it from re-occuring.  Here are some tips on how:

(You may be thinking who is this guy and why should I listen to his leathercare advice.  So at the end of the article I'll give you my creds and tell why I am helping the folks at Saddleback)

 

Tips on preventing and fixing mold on your Saddleback leather:

Don't

  • Don't "Google it" for help- I have seen some crazy-bad tips floating out on the web for solving leather problems.  Aka at NO time should your rub a banana peel on your leather, Huh!! Instead find someone who knows leather, specifically Saddleback Leather, and get qualified advice.


  • Don't use Febreeze, Lysol or another disinfectant on your Saddleback leather-  These products may kill the mold but can also cause harm to the leather. 

Do

  • Store your Saddleback Leather bag carefully especially when you won't be using it for a while-   Here are a few storage tips to prevent mold on your leather bag:
  1. Hang your bag when you store it, don't let it sit on the ground.
  2. Be sure to check for moisture before you store it.  Dry out the moisture by carefully waving a hairdryer over the area.
  3. Try to store the bag in a moisture/ heat controlled area.  Neither the attic nor the basement are good places to store your Saddleback Bag.
  4. Cover your leather with breathable cloth, like cotton sheets, when storing. Plastic bags or coverings will cause excessive drying.

  • If you do suspect mold, the leather must be cleaned thoroughly with a ph-balanced, anti-microbial leather cleaner-  An anti-microbial, leather specific cleaner will remove the mold and prevent further mold.  You can check the label of your leather cleaner, but I know that SG-5 from www.advleather.com is a ph-balanced anti-microbial leather cleaner.
  • Clean every surface, crack and crevass thoruoughly-  Apply the cleaner to a soft cloth and buff all surfaces with the cleaner.  Then use a Q-tip or pipecleaner to clean in the cracks, at seams and inside the pockets.  Don't miss any area.
  • Each Saddlebck finish needs special care-  The dark finishes, Coffee Brown and Carbon Black, will show the light mold stains more prominently.  Clean them thoroughly.The Tobacco and Chestnut finishes may darken a bit when cleaned, so buff briskly, don't soak the cleaning rag and dry the clean, moist leather off with a dry cloth or hairdryer.
  • Double-check your work-  The day after you clean mold off your bag, check it over again carefully.  A second cleaning with the anti-microbial cleaner would not be a bad idea either just to be safe.

Finally:

So I hope you don't ever have to deal with mold on your Saddleback bag.  Store it correctly and you won't. But if you do, this information will help you get it back in beautiful shape.  Again if you don't have a bag yet...  click here or on the bag above to go to the Saddleback site and get one, they're awesome.

 

Related articles:

"The unique finishes of Saddleback Leather" teaches specific tips on caring for each of the 4 Saddleback finishes.

 

And as promised, Why listen to me?

My dad says my first word was leather... but since that can't be confirmed I'll just say I have 25 years in the leather biz.  I'm now the 2nd generatioin owner of a leather cleaning, repair and refinishing company in the Baltimore/Washington DC area.  I've seen every problem imaginable to leather and am glad to share my experience to help you.

Why Saddleback?

That's me at the left holding my Saddleback bag standing with Saddleback CEO, Chuck Bowen.  I love Saddleback Leather Bags (Incuding my Light Tobacco Classic Briefcase).  I love their core values.  I love their affiliate program.  So I help you choose and care well for your Saddleback stuff, Saddleback sells more bags and helps more people, and I make a few affiliate bucks when you click through my links... everybody wins.  

How to contact me with questions or suggestions.

If you have a Saddleback leather question I haven't covered yet, please shoot it to me.  Or if you think I'm wrong or want to add to my suggestions, please do.  I can be reached though twitter by @leatherhelpguy or e-mail me at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .  Thanks.





 

 

Last Updated on Tuesday, 03 December 2013 22:34
 
Saddleback Stain Solutions: Muddy leather bag PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by Chris Repp   
Monday, 22 November 2010 10:39

Saddleback Stain Solutions: Mud on your Leather

Saddleback Leather Finishes Quick Clean Score for Muddy Leather (1=uncleanable to 10=easily cleaned)

Chestnut- 9, Tobacco- 6, Cobalt Black- 10, Dark Coffee- 9

Key Takeaway: Mud stained or splashed leather bags can be cleaned quite easily.  In most cases, a damp cloth will do the trick.  Just be sure to use the correct cleaning technique.  Read more for the details...

 

Don't have a Saddleback bag yet?  They're beautiful.  Check em out at Saddleback's site by clicking here.

 *All links are affiliate links so if this info is helpful to you please click through my links to buy your Saddleback products so I will get commission from the sale... Thanks!!

Introduction:

I know many of you Saddleback owners take you bags around the world in all kinds of weather.  If you use your bag outdoors it is likely that the bag will get mud on it.

While it's pretty easy to remove mud, there are a few variables to consider.  Which leather finish do you have (Tobacco will be cleaned differently than Carbon Black)? Is the mud wet or caked on dry?  Is it brown mud or red-clay mud?  

This article will give you the best way to clean mud from your specific Saddleback bag.  So read these tips for help:

(You may be thinking who is this guy and why should I listen to his leathercare advice.  So at the end of the article I'll give you my creds and tell why I am helping the folks at Saddleback)

 

 

Tips on caring for your muddy Saddleback leather:

Don't

  • Don't "Google it" for help- I have seen some crazy-bad tips floating out on the web for solving leather problems.  For example even though I saw a leathercare blog say to, at NO time should your rub a banana peel on your leather, Huh?!! Instead find someone who knows leather, specifically Saddleback Leather, and get qualified advice.

Do
  • Before the rain, treat your bag with a good conditioner or protector-  This will cause dirt and moisture to bead on the surface of your bag.  But be careful, the Tobacco and Chestnut finishes may darken when you add a conditioner.  See the article above for more info.
  • For wet, brown mud on all 4 finishes, use a damp cloth-   If the area is still muddy and wet, first try a damp cloth.  Scrape or pull off excess mud, then wipe the entire affected panel from seam to seam. Finally, buff the area with a dry cloth. 
  • For red/ clay-like mud, especially on the Tobacco finish, use a good leather cleaner before the mud dries-  The red in the clay-like mud can stain the fibers of the leather red, leaving a permanant tint.  So try to remove these stains quickly.  Using a good leather cleaner, apply it from seam to seam over ome entire panel at a time.  Then dry out the moisture by waving a hairdryer over the cleaned surface.
  • For dried mud, use a nylon brush to remove the dirt- If the mud has dried, don't re-wet the area at first.  Just brush off the dried mud and then you may clean over the affected panel with a damp cloth or good leather cleaner.  
  • Use will soften your bag if it stiffens after the rain-  Most leather is softened by milling.  Milling is just moving the leather around to loosen the fibers.  So just use it and it will soften back up for you.  Click here for an article more specifically about getting caught in the rain with your bag.

Finally:

Mud on your bag is not a fatal problem.  But once it has been muddied, you should clean it off correctly.  If you follow these tips it will clean up like new.

Of course,if you don't have a bag yet to get muddy...  click here to go to the Saddleback site and get one, they're incredible.

 

Related articles:

"The unique finishes of Saddleback Leather" teaches specific tips on caring for each of the 4 Saddleback finishes.

 

And as promised, Why listen to me?

My dad says my first word was leather... but since that can't be confirmed I'll just say I have 25 years in the leather biz.  I'm now the 2nd generatioin owner of a leather cleaning, repair and refinishing company in the Baltimore/Washington DC area.  I've seen every problem imaginable to leather and am glad to share my experience to help you.

Why Saddleback?

I'm holding the bag at the left and standing with Chuck Bowen the CEO of Saddleback. 

I love Saddleback Leather Bags (Incuding my Light Tobacco Classic Briefcase).  I love their core values.  I love their affiliate program.  So I help you choose and care well for your Saddleback stuff, Saddleback sells more bags and helps more people, and I make a few affiliate bucks when you click through my links... everybody wins.  

How to contact me with questions or suggestions.

If you have a Saddleback leather question I haven't covered yet, please shoot it to me.  Or if you think I'm wrong or want to add to my suggestions, please do.  I can be reached though twitter by @leatherhelpguy or e-mail me at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it Thanks.





 

 

Last Updated on Tuesday, 03 December 2013 22:39
 
Saddleback Stain Solutions: Ink marks on your bag PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by Chris Repp   
Monday, 22 November 2010 09:42

Saddleback Stain Solutions: Ink Marks 

Saddleback Leather Finishes Quick Clean Score for Ink Marks (1=uncleanable to 10= easily cleaned)

Chestnut- 6, Tobacco- 4, Cobalt Black- 9, Dark Coffee- 8

Key Takeaway: Ink marks must be removed as soon as you discover them.  As they dry and set deep into the fibers of your leather, they become less and less removable.  But there are some tips that can help. Read on for the details...

 

Don't have a Saddleback bag yet?  They're beautiful.  Check em out at Saddleback's site by clicking here.

 

Introduction:

So your ink pen slipped and made a mark along the side of your otherwise beautiful Saddleback Bag.  Or you put a pen in your bag and it exploded leaving a pool of black in the bottom.  Or you have a budding artist 3 year old who drew a smiley face on the bag for you. UGH!!

Ink staining is a very common problem with leather.  It is not easy to fix.   A rash attempt to clean the bag with the wrong product will make a small ink problem into a big leather problem.  So let me give you some tips on how to deal with ink correctly:

(You may be thinking who is this guy and why should I listen to his leathercare advice.  So at the end of the article I'll give you my creds and tell why I am helping the folks at Saddleback)

 

Tips on caring for Ink marks on your Saddleback leather:

Don't

  • Don't "Google it" for help- I have seen some crazy-bad tips floating out on the web for solving leather problems.  For example here's some advice I saw on a furniture care blog, "rub a banana peel on your leather to clean it", Huh!?! Instead find someone who knows leather, specifically Saddleback Leather, and get qualified advice.

  • Don't spray hairspray on the spot-  A common internet solution to ink marks on leather, hairspray will do more damage than good.

  • Don't wait to remove the ink-  The key with ink stains is to get them out as quickly as possible.  Anyone can remove a fresh ink stain easily.  But even a pro will have trouble removing a set-in ink stain from leather.

Do

  • Buy a rectangular white eraser and keep it in your bag-  This one is worth it's weight in gold.  Buy one of those white erasers at an office store and throw it in the bottom of your bag.  Then if you swipe your bag with an ink pen, you have the solution right on hand.  Pull out the eraser and quickly rub it over the ink.  In many cases, fresh ink will transfer to the eraser.  Then wipe the ink off the eraser and repeat. 

  • You won't always find ink immediatly, so at least check your bag daily-  When you get home at night, give a quick look over your bag.  If you find an ink stain the same day it occured, it may come out with the eraser.  If the eraser doesn't work, it still may not have set deeply into the leather so an ink remover may help.  Check out the next tip..

  • For Carbon Black, Dark Coffee and Chestnut finishes, try an ink removal stick.  Most furniture stores and several online sources will sell you an ink removal stick.  I use the one from www.leatherinstitute.com It only works on days old ink stains.  It should not be used on your Tobacco finish bag.  You rub it onto the ink stain, let it sit for a few minutes then blot and buff it out with a soft cloth.  If your lucky, it will pull some ink out onto the cloth.  Again, it wouldn't be a bad idea to just get one of these oversized lipstick tubes and throw it in your bag.

  • For Light and Dark Tobacco finish leathers, it is harder to remove ink stains.  The options are few and dangerous for removing ink from the beautiful, but natural, Tobacco leather bags.  If you aren't carefull, the wrong cleaner can stain the surronding area and cause a larger stain than just the ink. But here are two options to try at your own risk  (I'd pretest these on the bottom of the bag first):
  1. You can try putting a bit of rubbing alcohol onto a cotton swab and rubbing it over the ink stain.  Then you should wave a hair dryer over the area to dry it so you won't spread the stain. 
  2. As a last ditch effort, you can buy an ink removal liquid from www.leatherinstitute.com, mix it with cornstarch and make a paste.  Put a line of the paste on the ink and let it sit overnight.  Brush it off in the morning and it may draw out the ink. 
  3. Accept that the "artwork" on your Tobacco bag makes it even more unique.

 

  • Help for an exploded pen- If a pen inside your bag breaks or explodes, you should draw as much of the ink out as possible.  If not, the ink may bleed through the leather and show on the outside of the bag.  To draw the ink out place ink remover or rubbing alcohol onto a cloth and blot the stain.  You will need to repeat this with clean areas of the cloth many times to draw out the ink.

Finally:

So, fight to keep ink away from your Saddleback leather it can be very tough to remove.  If you do tend to have pens around your bag, keep an eraser or ink stick nearby to deal with the stain quickly.  It's your best option.  

Again if you don't have a bag yet...  click here or on the bag pictured above to go to the Saddleback site and get one, they're awesome.

 

Related articles:

"The unique finishes of Saddleback Leather" teaches specific tips on caring for each of the 4 Saddleback finishes.

 

And as promised, Why listen to me?

My dad says my first word was leather... but since that can't be proven, I'll just say I have 25 years in the leather biz.  I'm now the 2nd generatioin owner of a leather cleaning, repair and refinishing company in the Baltimore/Washington DC area.  I've seen every problem imaginable to leather and am glad to share my experience to help you.

Why Saddleback?

I'm holding my bag at the left and standing with Chuck Bowen the CEO of Saddleback. I love Saddleback Leather Bags (Incuding my Light Tobacco Classic Briefcase).  I love their core values.  I appreciate their affiliate program.  So if I help you choose and care well for your Saddleback stuff, Saddleback sells more bags and helps more people, and I make a few affiliate bucks when you click through my links... everybody wins.  

How to contact me with questions or suggestions.

If you have a Saddleback leather question I haven't covered yet, please shoot it to me.  Or if you think I'm wrong or want to add to my suggestions, please do.  I can be reached though twitter by @leatherhelpguy or e-mail me at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .  Thanks.





 

 

Last Updated on Wednesday, 04 December 2013 00:01
 
Saddleback Stain Solutions: Rain Soaked Leather Bag PDF  | Print |  E-mail
Written by Chris Repp   
Thursday, 18 November 2010 15:20

Saddleback Stain Solutions: Rain Soaked Leather

Saddleback Leather Finishes Quick Clean Score for Rain Soaked Leather (1=uncleanable to 10= easily cleaned)

Chestnut- 10, Tobacco- 9, Cobalt Black- 10, Dark Coffee- 10


Key Takeaway: Don't be too worried.  Leather has a significant natural moisture content.  Rain is not fatal to your bag.  You'll just neeed to dry out the excess moisture without damaging the leather fibers.  Read more for the details...


 

Don't have a Saddleback bag yet?  They're beautiful.  Check em out at Saddlebacks site by clicking here.

*All links are affiliate links so if this info is helpful to you please click through my links to buy your Saddleback products so I will get commission from the sale... Thanks!!

 

Introduction:

So you got caught out in a storm with your beloved Saddleback briefcase.  It's either gotten totally soaked or is showing splotchy water droplets on parts of the bag.

Don't worry, your bag isn't ruined... as long as you take the right steps to restore the correct moisture balance to the bag.

So let me give you some tips on how to dry out the bag without damaging the leather.  Read more below..

(You may be thinking who is this guy and why should I listen to his leathercare advice.  So at the end of the article I'll give you my creds and tell why I am helping the folks at Saddleback)

 

Tips on caring for your rain soaked Saddleback leather:

Don't

  • Don't "Google it" for help- I have seen some crazy-bad tips floating out on the web for solving leather problems. Like this example from a real blog I found, "rub a banana peel on your leather to clean it"... Huh!?! Instead find someone who knows leather, specifically Saddleback Leather, and get qualified advice.


  • Don't put the bag in the oven on a low temperature-  Laugh if you will, but I've seen this advice for wet leather.  It may work for a glove but not a fine Saddleback Leather Bag.

Do 

  • Before the rain, treat your bag with a good conditioner or protectorThis will cause moisture to bead on the surface of your bag instead of penetrating into the leather fibers.  But be aware that the Tobacco and Chestnut finishes may darken when you add a conditioner.

  • Blot with a towel and then use a hairdryer to evaporate excess moisuture-  Carbon Black and Dark Coffee will probably only need a towel dry.  But for Chestnut and Tobacco you can wave a hairdryer, on a warm setting, across the leather to evaporate the moisture.  

  • After drying the bag, you can use a good ph balanced leather cleaner to treat the leather- The ph of most rain is around 7, the ph of tanned leather is 4.5.  A good leather cleaner will also have the lower ph and restore the ph balance to your bag.

  • Use will soften your bag if it stiffens from the rain-  Most leather is softened by milling.  Milling is just moving the leather around to loosen the fibers.  So just use it and it will soften back up for you.

Finally:

So I hope you don't get caught in the rain with your Saddleback bag, but if you do this information will help you get it back in beautiful shape. 

Again if you don't have a bag yet to get caught in the rain with...  click here or on the Saddleback Bag pictured above and check them out.  They're the best.

 

Related articles:

"The unique finishes of Saddleback Leather" teaches specific tips on caring for each of the 4 Saddleback finishes.

 

And as promised, why trust my advice?

My dad says my first word was leather... but since that can't be confirmed, I'll just say I have 25 years in the leather biz.  I'm now the 2nd generatioin owner of a leather cleaning, repair and refinishing company in the Baltimore/Washington DC area.  I've seen every problem imaginable to leather and am glad to share my experience to help you.

Why Saddleback?

That's me at the left holding my bag standing with Saddleback CEO, Chuck Bowen. I love Saddleback Leather Bags (Incuding my Light Tobacco Classic Briefcase).  I love their core values.  So, I'm a part of their affiliate program. 

I help you choose and care well for your Saddleback stuff, Saddleback sells more bags, and I make a few affiliate bucks when you click through my links... everybody wins.  

Contact me with questions or suggestions.

If you have a Saddleback leather question I haven't covered yet, please shoot it to me.  Or if you think I'm wrong or want to add to my suggestions, please do.  I can be reached though twitter by @leatherhelpguy or e-mail me at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .  Thanks.





  

Last Updated on Wednesday, 04 December 2013 00:05
 
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