The most important thing to remember about your leather handbag or leather briefcase is that leather breathes – Marco Galli, our Italian leather craftsman will tell you è vivo or rather it’s alive. This means that it’s appearance is influenced by the environment in which it is used and stored. Any kind of leather, even those that are treated, will eventually absorb excess moisture and in doing so will change the appearance of your leather bag. Especially creating a problem with unwanted molds, smells and discoloration.
When your handbag, bag, briefcase or even a leather accessory is not in use it is best to store them in a soft cloth bag. Most top quality designer handbags such as Toscanella, Pierotucci and Fortunata come with a flannel-like bag with a drawstring closure.
If your handbag doesn’t have one of these bags, you can easily sew one together or as an alternative use an old pillow case. It is important that the bag is a neutral and/or fixed color so that there is no color transfer during the storage time. It is also imperative that it has a large enough opening so that it is easy to slip the bag inside and so there is no need to bend or fold the bag in an un-natural way during the storage.
If a protective cloth bag is not provided with your purchase, or if you don’t have the opportunity to make one yourself you can use a plastic bag. This option should always be considered temporary because a plastic bag does not allow for a constant free flow of air. However if you tie it with a loose knot and poke several small holes in the bag it will provide protection. The nature of a plastic bag is to contain the moisture, so as soon as a cloth bag is available for your leather handbag you should switch it over.
The handbag should be wiped down before putting it into the storage bag thus removing any lose dirt or moisture. Look at our Tip 2 for more detailed information on how to prepare the bag to be put into storage. If you store your leather bag with dirt you risk the possibility of color transfer. Some leathers are not as absorbent to color transfer, however vegetable tanned leathers, natural leathers, rawhide or suedes will easily absorb dirt and color and it can become permanent if not cleaned properly. Before storing your leather bag, it should also be emptied completely – especially of makeup, perfume, pens and pencils – all of which can leak or break and thus destroying the beautiful appearance of your leather handbag, briefcase or leather accessory.
The first step for properly caring for your leather bag, handbag, briefcase or leather accessory such as a pochette, wallet or belt is storing it correctly when not in use.
A soft, flannel like bag is the ideal method of storage. This allows for constant circulation of air keeping the bag dry.