Florentine Natural

Nov 21, 2020
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I thought I'd start a discussion on this color....because I am obsessed with it and don't know why. It is not easy to maintain and I'm terrified of getting a stain on it...BUT just love the Natural...even when it has that patina. That golden color just makes me think of sunshine and glow...anyone else obsessed with Natural?
 
Aug 13, 2014
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I thought I'd start a discussion on this color....because I am obsessed with it and don't know why. It is not easy to maintain and I'm terrified of getting a stain on it...BUT just love the Natural...even when it has that patina. That golden color just makes me think of sunshine and glow...anyone else obsessed with Natural?
I know what you mean. 2020 has been 'the year of the neutrals' for me. Never before have I
want to own natural, chestnut, saddle.... in multiples. As for the Florentine natural, I prefer the
lighter, paler leather. But any natural is beautiful as long as it's clean. I think it's the elegance of the
color that is appealing to me at this point.

I seem to be craving Flo natural and looking for more handbags
to buy just so that I can get another Flo natural in my collection.
But, several of the Flo natural handbags this year have been very
'sturdy' leather, darker in color, and displaying natural leather grain.
They are not the butter smooth natural Flo I lust after.
After a little use the leather does soften and the bags look and feel better.
The leather isn't pebbled, it's just naturally grained.

I know enough about leather to know that many smooth leathers
are made that way by buffing. Florentine is thick full grain leather,
which is far superior to leather that is mechanically buffed to look better.
It's a complicated thing.... top of the line full grain leather with no
natural striations is more expensive for a manufacturer to use than
full grain leather that is more 'natural' looking. Some contemporary brands
seem to treat all their leathers, they look good, most people don't know the
difference about the underlying quality. At least with Dooney Florentine,
I know what I'm getting.... sorta.
 
Nov 21, 2020
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270
Thank you so much for this information. I need to do more research on florentine leather and the difference between this and other leather such as that smooth city leather. The natural color just seems to go well with anything and have that classic look while still being carefree.
 
Aug 13, 2014
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Purpleflower: Dooney says the Florentine leather has no finishing or processing to protect the leather
from absorbing liquids or stains. As you know, darker colors are relatively carefree. But lighter
color Flo leathers can absorb dye from dark clothing (color transfer). It happens to a lot of people.

These days a lot of dark color
clothing is super-saturated with dye. When a light color handbag is worn on the shoulder or cross body
it rubs against the body and can pick up the excess dye. It's impossible to get the darker dye out of the leather. Dye transfer seems to happen less often if a bag is hand carried as it's not exposed to as much friction, body heat, and moisture.

The best you can do (if you get dye transfer on a natural Flo handbag is rub the handbag (for days and days, with a clean, dry cloth) to try to accelerate the patina and darkening process and
hope to make the darker area less noticeable.

I don't know if any of the leather protectant products
help avoid this color transfer problem. That would be good to know.
 
Nov 21, 2020
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Even spraying with water and stain repellent would not protect it? Luckily I haven't had any color transfer on my naturals yet....knock on wood. Does Chestnut color seem to lessen the color transfer? I assume black and navy blue are safe?
 
Aug 13, 2014
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I think that darker colors including chestnut are pretty resistant to color transfer. If there is any, it's hard to see the extra dye color and it could be more easily be blended into the background.

I don't know if stain repellant works. I don't have any experience with it.
Hopefully others will join this discussion.
 

Lunalark

Member
Jan 20, 2020
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91
Nothing you spray or condition with imo is truly 100% on a Natural bag. But it helps roll off and repel most definitely! If I find a mark after I have done all this, I buff it out with a cloth or more condtioner (light!) and usually takes care of it. Or darkens the area around it so it blends in.

I haven't had color transfer on a Natural thank goodness (i spray and condition all of them) but have seen videos Pecan Tanned Beauty did on how she handles it. Can't remember exactly what she did, maybe a non alcohol wipe.
 
Aug 13, 2014
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Nothing you spray or condition with imo is truly 100% on a Natural bag. But it helps roll off and repel most definitely! If I find a mark after I have done all this, I buff it out with a cloth or more condtioner (light!) and usually takes care of it. Or darkens the area around it so it blends in.

I haven't had color transfer on a Natural thank goodness (i spray and condition all of them) but have seen videos Pecan Tanned Beauty did on how she handles it. Can't remember exactly what she did, maybe a non alcohol wipe.
Yes PcanTannedBeauty does use non-alcohold wipes on her bags. She says she cleans them up regularly,
so stains and dirt don't build up. For those who change bags often, it's important to clean the bag when ever you change out of it. If you wear a bag for a long time, then it should be cleaned regularly too. Most people don't bother. But quick attention to any issues is important to maintain a great looking handbag.
Maybe.....a small amount of color transfer can be resolved.... maybe. But if it sits and absorbs into the
Florentine leather, I would not be hopeful. Sad, but true.
I need to do a better job of cleaning/conditioning my bags when I change them.
 
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Lunalark

Member
Jan 20, 2020
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Yes PcanTannedBeauty does use non-alcohold wipes on her bags. She says she cleans them up regularly,
so stains and dirt don't build up. For those who change bags often, it's important to clean the bag when ever you change out of it. If you wear a bag for a long time, then it should be cleaned regularly too. Most people don't bother. But quick attention to any issues is important to maintain a great looking handbag.
Maybe.....a small amount of color transfer can be resolved.... maybe. But if it sits and absorbs into the
Florentine leather, I would not be hopeful. Sad, but true.
I need to do a better job of cleaning/conditioning my bags when I change them.

I know you have mentioned to be careful of over conditioning leather, so what's best in your opinion, to do each time you change out of a bag short-term? The wipes or just a soft cloth?
 

luminosity

Member
Feb 9, 2013
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Hi, I am sorry for asking this question in this thread, but how does florentine leather compare to coach glovetanned leather? Is florentine leather better than Coach's glovetanned leather?
 
Aug 13, 2014
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I know you have mentioned to be careful of over conditioning leather, so what's best in your opinion, to do each time you change out of a bag short-term? The wipes or just a soft cloth?
A soft cloth is the safest for Florentine leather.
Since we don't know what's in the wipes (really), I use them only when needed....
a specific stain or a bag that really needs freshening up quickly.

I think the leather cleaners (I've used Apple, no experience with others),
are a less risky choice than wipes, since they are specifically made for leather.

Conditioning too much can build up on the leather and weaken it in stress
areas. Over conditioning can also affect stitching and underlying glue.

Any cleansers, lotions and potions and cleansers can affect leather over time....
so I don't think that we should be using them too often. And when used,
we should use a little bit... you can always add more....but you can't take
away once it's on the leather. And don't forget to buff with a clean dry cloth
after the products have dried, to remove excess that can coat the surface of the leather
and also attract dirt. it's easy to skip the buffing.... it's one more chore, just when we
want to be done with maintenance.

Since we love our handbags, and SLGs (do we ever clean those?)... I try to remind myself
that caring for them is an opportunity to enjoy looking at them and enjoying them, just
in a different way. (No it's not weird). Just like cleaning jewelry is an opportunity to
play with your pretty things and enjoy looking at them all bright and sparkly again.

Note to self: SLGs need cleaning when I change out to another set. Duh!
 

Lunalark

Member
Jan 20, 2020
171
91
Hi, I am sorry for asking this question in this thread, but how does florentine leather compare to coach glovetanned leather? Is florentine leather better than Coach's glovetanned leather?
That is a good question!. I'm curious to know also.
 

Lunalark

Member
Jan 20, 2020
171
91
A soft cloth is the safest for Florentine leather.
Since we don't know what's in the wipes (really), I use them only when needed....
a specific stain or a bag that really needs freshening up quickly.

I think the leather cleaners (I've used Apple, no experience with others),
are a less risky choice than wipes, since they are specifically made for leather.

Conditioning too much can build up on the leather and weaken it in stress
areas. Over conditioning can also affect stitching and underlying glue.

Any cleansers, lotions and potions and cleansers can affect leather over time....
so I don't think that we should be using them too often. And when used,
we should use a little bit... you can always add more....but you can't take
away once it's on the leather. And don't forget to buff with a clean dry cloth
after the products have dried, to remove excess that can coat the surface of the leather
and also attract dirt. it's easy to skip the buffing.... it's one more chore, just when we
want to be done with maintenance.

Since we love our handbags, and SLGs (do we ever clean those?)... I try to remind myself
that caring for them is an opportunity to enjoy looking at them and enjoying them, just
in a different way. (No it's not weird). Just like cleaning jewelry is an opportunity to
play with your pretty things and enjoy looking at them all bright and sparkly again.

Note to self: SLGs need cleaning when I change out to another set. Duh!
Ok, great info, thank you for taking the time as always! I do need that reminder to buff out, how did you know I get tired and skip sometimes ;)

I am the weird one lol I do a better cleaning job on my slg's. I'm determined to keep that inside red lining on the Florentine wristlets etc pristine.
 
Aug 13, 2014
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Hi, I am sorry for asking this question in this thread, but how does florentine leather compare to coach glovetanned leather? Is florentine leather better than Coach's glovetanned leather?
luminosity: great question and I've often thought of this myself. I am a newbie to Coach.
I've read some very detailed articles about the leather, and what I concluded was that
the leather Coach used years ago was far superior to it's current leather (there may be exceptions
at the very high end of the price range).

My preliminary conclusion is that the term glovetanned leather is a marketing term and doesn't
really identify the characteristics of the leather. Just like Dooney (and others) use the term
pebbled leather, which could be the original, thick, Dooney all weather leather that was
full grain leather that was then shrunk to get the pebbling and made even thicker.
Today, lots of pebbled leather isn't full grain and the pebbling is an embossed texture.
That makes it lighter in weight, doesn't make it bad, but it's not the same thing and
each has it's pros and cons. So what does pebbled leather really mean?

Back to glovetanned leather from Coach. I think that the term is used for different leathers
in terms of quality and thickness. I think the top surface is buffed for smoothness. Different
amounts of pebbling may be added by embossing the leather. So, some glovetanned leathers
may be really thick and high quality, while others may not be as high quality.

Leather 'quality' is affected by the leather itself (what animal it comes from, how thick the piece is,
where on the animal it came from, and how many natural defects it has). It is also affected by
the tanning process and the chemicals used. And the dyeing process and the chemicals used.
And then the quality is affected by whether an piece of leather is full grain, top grain, suede,
etc. The full grain is the thickest and contains the entire depth of all the layers. The top grain
is thinner and doesn't contain as many layers of the leather. Suede is just the underside of the leather.
And some 'leather' is made up of scraps that are molded together (it has names, but I think of it
as like baloney). Manufacturers can save money by 'slicing' the leather and using various layers
separately. Rather than using an entire piece of leather as full grain, a manufacturer can split it
and use some of it as top grain and some as suede.

Add to the mix that the surface of the leather can be buffed, for smoothness, or embossed for
texture (pebbled, exotic, etc.) And thinner layers can be coated (patent, for example) for looks
or function (stain and water resistance, durability).

What is good and what is bad is often in the eye of the consumer. If you like it and it works for you
(looks, function, price) does it matter if it's not the thickest, best, full grain leather, tanned and dyed
using the most premium processes? I've concluded that as long as I know what I'm getting,
or at least don't think I'm getting something better than it really is), that it's ok for me to
make the trade-offs for looks, function, price, variety.

Technically, I believe, that Dooney Floentine leather is superior to what Coach calls
glovetanned leather. I could be wrong. Dooney Florentine leather is full grain, tanned and dyed
using high end processes, I believe. (Dyeing process may vary for some lighter colors). The surfaces of the leather are not buffed or altered. They may show natural striations, pebbling and defects in the leather. (so each piece of leather may not be the very top quality), and the thickness may also vary (because naturally leather thickness varies).

I don't know if Coach glovetanned leather is full grain or top grain. But I believe the surface is
buffed for smoothness and the pebbling is an embossed texture. That makes the finished
piece more uniform. I also don't know about the tanning and dyeing process Coach uses
on glovetanned leather. The leather used on Coach original handbags was full grain.
The smoothness might have come from selecting highest quality pieces or from buffing.
I don't know.

So you can see.... the more I think I know, the more questions I have.
And if you prefer the look and feel of Coach glovetanned leather to the
Dooney Florentine leather (which varies more), then who is to say which is 'better'?
 
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Nov 21, 2020
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I used to be a Coach collector years ago....their old Legacy line reminds me very much of DB florentine line....Sold all of my Legacy line years ago and ran to Vera Bradley for awhile. Looked at Coach again and just thought the sophistication was totally gone. If I were to invest in Coach again, it would be their 20 year old bags...that leather was indeed a beauty........their quality has totally changed of recent IMO
 
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