Natural Goodness - Bark-Tanned Leather

Starling and Hider Leather is of 2 types:VegTan Bubble (an Italian VegTan leather which is softened by tumbling) and VegTan Bridle Leather(A UK produced leather from an English Tannery).

We currently use VegTan bubble We often double the leather for strong strapping points.to make luxury men's and women's accessories such as the Meetup Attache and Backpack.

Straps are either soft leather doubled up for strength or are made of Bridle leather (depending on loading, thickness & width of the strap.

We want things to work well for you  and we would prefer if we  heard good things about the way our products wear and weather.Since our products are natural hides they are affected by light. They will continue to tan after they leave us.For instance "natural" starts out white and weather to cream and then light brown. "Yellow" is a vintage colour which will tan to mid-brown.

These products are tanned naturally with no nasty chemical finishes. We offer this advice (below)on the care of each products and try to design our accessories so that they wear well:

Natural calf products can be sealed & waterproofed using wax-based products.These will darken the leather.Before using a product on your bag, test it on the “Real leather”tag (which uses the same leather as your bag). If you do stain your bag, try sponging it lightly with a slightly damp natural sponge or clean cotton dishcloth. Another method is to scrape surface stains off with a sharp knife (since we use full-hide leather.)

Since these hides are natural and their surface is raw and not re-surfaced you may see the odd lump, bump or scratch.Try smoothing out folds or bumps using a steam iron with a damp cotton cloth in between to protect the leather from burning or staining.

We want the cows whose hides are made into your accessories to have lived nice lives. So we hope you don't mind if our cows rub up against a tree to scratch an itch when they felt like it.(or occasionally takes a bite out of a cheeky heifer).If our cows live outside that's ideal.If our sheep eat grass that's great.And when you pick up a Starling and Hider bag these are the things we have been thinking about when we choose our hide suppliers.

At the moment we use Italian Leather from established London leather supplier,Batchelors in the bags we make in Hackney, Shoreditch and a short train-ride away in the English countryside.

Gearing up, we now make our products in London and Surrey and are keen to make and sell locally. We continue to use well-sourced natural materials and our eventual aim if we have sufficient traction will be to track each leather bag by its hide markings right back to the farms where the animal was reared and bred.

We hope that you enjoy these luxury handmade accessories and have as much enjoyment using them as we did making them.Work with us to make the world naturally better.

StarlingandHider bags are singular, elegant and may outlast you,becoming classics for others to treasure. Our styles are often inspired by vintage bags but we always think about life’s particular journeys and what you would need for your day!

Buy our Vegetable or Bark-tanned leather bags while you can. Soft Italian or waterproof English fine organically tanned leathers are each stamped for authenticity by their tanneries. Also see http://www.pellealvegetale.it/en

As artisanal labour everywhere disappears, old skills of making were revered but badly paid. Large and even small retailers buy from manufacturers in India and China. But London is now changing. Afire with creativity from all over the world our English Leather Industry is coming alive again.

Sickened by the realisation that almost everything we buy is made thousands of miles away and the value end of the business, StarlingandHider customers feel that enough is enough.

If we make our bags out of the best leather and price them reasonably there might not be enough margin for certain traditional retailers. But we are a young idealistic company and we will make some lines especially for direct sale.

We realise that the customer cannot spend what they don't have and so we bring you our Spring offers.... a great chance to have your own heirloom bag made from new organically tanned leather. Starling and Hider bags are made of English and Italian Cowhide, some of the best leathers you can get! Not a 1/10th of a centimetre of split leather with a shiny coating on top.This is the real thing!

Soft Italian leather tanned organically with vegetable extracts is used for our supple luxury 'Meetup' backpacks and attache cases.

We also make some soft leather Starling Micros, card-holders and a navigator-width dog-collar to fit the Vodafone tracker.

We use the more expensive English bridle leather (again organically tanned) to make the luxury Art Director folios on demand. Baker's tannery in Colyton in Devon which dates from Roman Times.It is the last organic tannery in England.Lets keep it going!

We can also arrange to provide batch orders of 50 - 200 bags using organic leather tracked from its origin as a happy and organically reared grass-fed animal to each article.These bags can also be tagged and tracked if you wish & will all come with a return-to-maker ID tag.