We hope this list of questions is helpful, but it's hard to cover everything. Please don't hesitate to email me, Kelley Parkes, firstname.lastname@example.org
How long will it take to get my item(s)?
For custom orders, it currently takes about 2 to 3 weeks from the time we receive your payment to the time you receive your item(s). If you purchase an in-stock item, it'll ship the next business day.
Why are handmade leather goods so expensive?
Here at Black Feather Leather, we never compromise on quality. Every item is handmade by Kelley, from the first cut to the last stitch. Wallets take about 7 hours to make. Belts take an average of 5 hours to make. Bags take between 25-80 hours, depending on their size. Each piece is carefully and thoughtfully designed with ergonomics and durability in mind. The best possible hides are selected for each project by weight and tanning method used (some leathers are softer than others and make a great lining, some are very water-resistant and make a great bag exterior). There will be some natural markings like small scars, but each hide is carefully inspected for natural weak spots or large imperfections or brands. Attention to detail is very important, and great effort is taken to make sure each stitch is purposeful and straight. Solid copper rivets are used in high-stress areas. Finally, each edge is hand-burnished for a smooth and finished appearance. We think you'll find that our prices are fair, and reflect the old world craftsmanship, attention to detail, and durability that goes into every piece.
What's wrong with machine stitching? What's so great about hand-stitching?
The truth is, sewing machines are great. They're fast, efficient, and they can crank out beautiful leather goods in a fraction of the time it takes to hand stitch. So what's the problem? Machine stitching is flawed from a durability standpoint. Let's back up.... Leather is strong. Really strong. The weak point in any leather piece is the stitching. A lock stitch is made with a machine, when two needles enter a hole (one from the top and one from the bottom), meet in the middle, hook the thread together, and move back out the same side they came in, onto the next hole. This makes the stitch prone to unraveling if a portion of the thread breaks, which it inevitably will. With nor all wear and tear, saddle stitched thread will sometimes break too! The difference is that when a thread does break, it won't come unraveled because both threads pass completely through each hole, and out the opposite side. Think of it as weaving, or doubling up on the stitching. In a pinch, you can melt the loose end of the thread with a lighter, and that'll be the end of it. If you're not happy with the way it looks, send it back to us, and we'll gladly repair it for you for free.
Are you a visual person?
Speaking of thread...
What's so great about Polyester Thread?
Polyester thread is very strong, it has very little stretch to it, it's extremely durable, and won't rot like cotton or linen thread. Imported from Germany, Ritza Tiger Thread is the preferred choice of professional leatherworkers. This lightly waxed thread is UV resistant, durable, braided polyester with a high breaking strength. When hand-sewing, Ritza Tiger Thread will lie flat against the leather, allowing for even more durability. At Black Feather leather we work exclusively with Ritza Tiger thread.
How does your warranty work? What's your repair policy?
Our warranty is forever. If you should ever encounter a problem with materials or workmanship, we'll make it right: no questions asked, no hassle given. We'll pay shipping both ways. Normal wear and tear is not covered by the warranty, but can be repaired for an additional charge. We'll pay shipping one-way for repairs. Please email for details.
Why does it matter where our materials comes from?
It's important to know where your stuff comes from, and who made it. We believe in supporting our economy and finding the best possible materials. All of our leather is made in the USA, and all of our hardware is either Made in USA or Italy by the finest metal crafters.
Isn't everything technically made by hand?
Not really. Handmade actually means something is made with hands or hand tools. Once you start bringing machines into the construction of leather goods, they're no longer handmade. They're hand-crafted, but not handmade. Every Black Feather Leather product is handmade. It might sound like semantics, but to us it's a big deal.
Do you use Full-Grain leather?
Yes. All of the leather we use is Full-Grain. It's First Quality, never split, never corrected grain. Only the best.
What is Shell Cordovan, and why is it so insanely expensive?
Shell Cordovan is a leather prized for its strength, durability, and beauty. Rather than try to explain it in our own words, we borrowed a quote straight from Horween's website:
"Genuine Shell Cordovan is the art of tanning at its finest. More than just a color, it is a very specific leather, from a particular part of a horsehide. The irregular oval shaped shells are tanned, stuffed, shaved, and then polished – a process taking at least six months. Each shell is slowly steeped in gentle vegetable liquors. The shells are genuine hot stuffed then slicked onto glass frames to dry. Each shell is hand curried and shaved by highly skilled artisans to expose the shell. Dyes are hand rubbed on for a deep aniline finish. Finally, the shells are hand glazed to achieve the rich, glossy look and feel prized by fine craftsmen."
Do you ship internationally?
At this time, we do not offer international shipping.
Do you accept returns?
Due to the custom nature of Black Feather Leather products, we do not accept returns. However, should you ever find a flaw in workmanship or materials, you're covered by our Lifetime Warranty. At Black Feather Leather, we are invested in you satisfaction with our products.
How do I provide a belt measurement?
Please follow the diagram below.