Caring for your vachetta...Borough style!

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  1. I picked up my medium vachetta Borough today...my first reaction was that the leather is sooooo soft! I was expecting the vachetta to be stiff and rigid, but I was wrong. I got a chance to see the glove tanned leather as well, and while the glove tanned is smoother (obviously, as it is treated), the vachetta is much softer and "smooshier" (although that's not quite the right word to describe it because it's not like the bag has no structure). Because of how lightweight the leather is, the vachetta Borough feels quite a bit lighter than my pebbled Oxblood.

    Here are a couple of photos in indirect sunlight. I love the color of brand new, untreated vachetta!

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    And modeling photos...I'm 5'7" and the shortest strap length still sits a bit low on me. Considering how I do not want this bag to rub against my clothing (which may have dirt I can't see), I will probably never (or rarely) use the strap anyway. If only my Oxblood medium had a strap this length!

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    After I placed my order, I did some research here on caring for an all-vachetta bag. I'm no stranger to Vachetta as I've used LV bags for almost 8 years now, and IMO the number one myth surrounding vachetta is that it's hard to care for and scary to use. What I've learned from carrying LV is that as long as you use the proper products, vachetta can withstand rain, snow, and regular use.

    I wasn't going to treat my Borough prior to using, but since I'd like to enjoy it and not worry, I decided that I'd go ahead to protect it, and document it here to share with other PFers who may be considering getting a vachetta Borough or are unsure of how to pre-treat their Borough. Here are the things I used: and old clean cloth, Cadillac Boot and Shoe care, and Obenauf's LP (leather protector). These two products I purchased on eBay. I've used the Cadillac on delicate leathers like Chanel lambskin, and it works well at removing dirt while moisturizing. The Obeanauf LP is a product I learned about from this thread.

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    I recommend wearing clothes that are clean (although I wore jeans and no color transfer happened) and thoroughly washing your hands prior to touching your bag, otherwise, you'll be rubbing dirt onto your bag. Sit in a well lit area and place the bag on a clean surface (or do this on your dustbag).

    The first thing is to apply the Cadillac Boot & Shoe all over the bag. Don't forget the little tassels, the inside leather pieces, and the strap. When you first apply the Cadillac, the leather will turn dark and may be patchy. Do not panic! This has happened with every single product I've ever used on vachetta (even Apple Garde) and once dried thoroughly, the patchiness goes away. You can either squeeze a bit of product on the cloth and rub it into the leather in a circular motion. The way I prefer is to squeeze the product (just a little bit) directly onto the leather, and then rubbing it in/smoothing it with the cloth. I do this in small palm-sized sections on the bag. If you do it the way I do, you may see a dark line where you squeezed on the product after you've rubbed it in. Once again, do not panic! In a couple of minutes, it will go away.

    Here's an example...I just happened to squeeze a "D" on:

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    After rubbing in...dark line where I applied the leather cleaner:

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    After a minute or so, it's almost completely disappeared:

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    Continued on next post...
     
  2. And here is the same spot, once the product settled into the leather.... line gone!

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    No biggie. Here's another example. Leather cleaner applied onto the bag:

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    ...and rubbed in (eep!):

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    and...gone!

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    Keep applying and rubbing in the cleaner until the entire bag has been treated. This is what it looked like after I was done with the Cadillac Boot & Shoe. No patchiness. Keep in mind that after this step, the bag was very slightly darker. This usually happens when treating raw vachetta for the first time.

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    katev likes this.
  3. Now, if you want to stop here, you can spray with Apple Garde, let dry ~24 hours, and start using your bag. But I wanted to use Obenauf's LP, which has given other PFer's all-vachetta Speedys and Hermes a beautiful sheen.

    This is an interesting product. It has a faint beeswax smell and has the consistency of lip balm. This product is applied with your bare hands as your body heat is required to warm this product slightly.

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    This product was scarier to apply. The patchiness after applying is obvious, and if you put too much on, it almost looks like there's an oil stain. You can see in this photo near the top that there's a darker spot where I smeared a bit of product while I was focused on applying it on the center of the bag:

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    Don't worry, like the leather cleaner before, the dark stain looking patch will go away once it begins to dry.

    The key is just getting enough product on a few fingers (rubbing fingers in pot in a circular motion, like you would lip balm) and then applying in a circular motion to a small area and rubbing in thoroughly. There'll be a nice sheen where you just applied the LP, so you can move onto the next section once you see this sheen.

    This is what my Borough looked like after I got LP on the entire bag... It's visibly darker, but no scary oil-stain looking patches as it already started to dry!

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    I'm leaving my bag to dry overnight prior to applying a second coat of LP. This is how it's sitting in my closet right now:

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    Tomorrow afternoon I will use the same technique to apply another coat of LP. I'll take photos of what my Borough looks like after drying overnight, and I will report back once I've gotten a chance to apply the second coat!
     
    OJane and Bagmedic like this.
  4. Congrats on your new bag...it is gorgeous!!! And thank you for all the pics and info...so very helpful! I have used Obenauf's on the handles of my Watercolor Speedy, but I have never tried the Cadillac. I am definitely going to check it out. Enjoy your new beauty!
     
  5. Gorgeous!
     
  6. I use the Cadillac product on all my leather bags--love this stuff! I had red ink mark on a bag (long story) I treated the mark with Cadillac on a whim but to my surprise the ink lifted right off. Amazing!

    When you take the next set of pix, would you take one in direct light like your first picture? It'd be cool to see the contrast.

    Congrats again! It's beautiful!
     
  7. What a helpful thread and that Borough is just gorgeous. It's going to look amaaaazing in about a year :smile:
     
  8. What a gorgeous bag! Thanks so much for sharing your vachetta expertise!
     
  9. Wow, gorgeous!!! Love the darker color. Question....why cleaner on a brand-new bag first? Why not just the obenauf's or apple guard first? I mean, it looks great, but I'm curious about the steps. Thank you SO much for this info!!!
     
  10. Thanks for sharing. This would have great when I first got my Neverfull. Though, I can't complain about how the Neverfull aged. After five years of regular use, it was a rich honey color.
     
  11. Thanks everyone!

    Definitely!

    There are a couple of reasons... I always use a layer of cleaner/moisturizer before a protective spray because to me it works like a "primer" as well. I spot tested the Obeanauf on the vachetta at the very beginning and it didn't rub in very well... the spot where I tested it looked like an oil stain, and it didn't go away for a long time (unlike after I treated the bag with Cadillac Boot & Shoe). The other reason was I found a couple of light dirt marks on the leather, so I wanted to clean it first. :smile:
     
  12. Wow, what a beautiful bag!! Congrats!!
    Thank you karman for all the information. If I ever buy a vachetta bag, I will come back to this thread!
     
  13. Thank you so much for taking the time to share all of this. It was incredibly helpful.
     

  14. +1!
     
  15. Thank you for sharing your vachetta tips! Your Borough is gorgeous.