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leather shapes leather shapes




Deutsches Ledermuseum:- Frankfurter Str. 86, Offenbach, Germany 63067. Tel: (069) 829798 0. E-mail: The German Leather Museum is one of the largest leather museums in the world. It has a wide variety leather items, including some exhibits, which are believed to more than 3,000 years old. DLM as it is known - was opened in the leather city Offenbach in 1917. Since then more than 30,000 objects have come together that document "the leather production and leather processing of all times and all peoples" - as was said at the time. In 1939 the DLM moved into its new home in the reconstructed "Städtische Lagerhaus", a city warehouse, a classicist building in the west of Offenbach’s city.
What its founder, Prof. Hugo Eberhardt originally laid out as a collection of historic examples for a flourishing leather goods industry quickly developed into a multi-section museum of global, anthropological standard.

German Leather Museum

The German Leather Museum

In addition to the regular presentation of the most important items of the collection the DLM organizes specialized exhibitions of international contemporary art, crafts and from the ethnological and cultural history sectors. Furthermore theme-based festivals are celebrated in the museum, for example about the culture of Japan, but also Romania, Croatia and many other countries. For these the additional facilities, like the special exhibitions hall, the theatre, cafeteria, lobby, inner court, etc., are used, with the aim of addressing all senses of the visitor. All around the year an expansive pedagogical programme offers theoretical and practical events for children and workshops for adults in special workrooms or - in the summer - in the outside area behind the museum building. The museum has three wings, namely, the German Shoe Museum, the Museum for Applied Art and the Ethnology Museum. The museum has a number of leather items on display including shoes, saddles, bookcases, photo albums, leather furniture, and toys. Website Deutsches Ledermuseum

Museum of the Master Saddler:- Corlough, Co. Cavan, Rep. of Ireland. Tel: +353 (0)49 952 3956. Mobile (00353) 086 3946467. E-mail: The museum is situated in Co. Cavan, Ireland near Ballinamore. Its curator, Rob Steinke, is an apprenticed trained Master Saddler. His mission is to document the craft of the Saddler and Harness Maker and how they have had to adapt to the ever changing role of the horse in society and in manufacturing materials and methods. The museum displays an array of saddlery from Ireland, UK & further afield such as Egypt, Morocco & USA. Demonstrations of hand-making saddlery are included in the tours.

Master Saddler's Museum

This Museum is run by Rob and Moira and between them they have been involved in most equestrian activities inc. showing, driving, hunting, dressage, showjumping, cross country and endurance riding, not to mention pleasure riding and galloping on the beach!! In addition Rob served his apprenticeship in saddlery with HM Queen's saddler, Keith Luxford, and for many years ran his own business specialising in making fine quality riding and driving harness. The collection of exhibits in the museum is therefore a culmination of a lifetime of collecting...and still growing. Website Master Saddler

Leather Museum in Igualada:- Dr. Joan Mercader, s/n, Igualada 08700, Spain. Tel: +34 (0)93 804 6752. E-mail: The Igualada Leather Museum (Catalan: Museu de la Pell d'Igualada), located in Igualada, Catalonia, was created in 1954 and was the first leather museum in Spain, and the third one in Europe. The collections are displayed in two nearby buildings in Igualada: the "Cal Boyer" building, a former cotton textile factory from the late 19th century, and the "Cal Granotes" building, a 18th century tannery. The Cal Boyer building corresponds to a former cotton textile factory from the late 19th century. The main site of the leather museum, Museu de la Pell d’Igualada i Comarcal de l’Anoia is also known as the "Vapor Nou". Refurbishment work began in 1986.

Igualada Leather Museum

(same again but interior view)Igualada Leather Museum width

Igualada - Museu de la Pell (Foto: Albert Esteves, 2009)

Igualada - Museu de la Pell

The Museu de la Pell is located in an area where there are over seventy companies tanning leather. It is mainly used for goods such as footwear and upholstery. The museum has three sections and the visitor can learn about the Moroccan method of tanning hides and the history of leather from prehistoric times and its uses. There is also a section devoted to the evolution of leather in Igualada. Website Leather Museum in Igualada

The Museum of Leather Craft:- Abington Park Museum, Abington Park, Park Avenue South, Northampton NN1 5LW, UK. Tel: +44 (0) 1604 838110. Fax: 01604 838720.
Contact Niel MacGregor, Liaison Officer. E-mail: In 1946 John W. Waterer with the collaboration of Dr. Claude Spiers, founded the Museum of Leathercraft. The museum was started with the aim of "the preservation and encouragement of high standards of craftsmanship and design" in the leather industry and to collect and showcase these items.

Abingdon Park Museum

 floorplan of the museum

Abington Park Museum

Floor plan of museum

Waterer, with Spiers, collected several hundred pieces, attracting grants from trusts and benefactors. He pioneered the conservation of leather, and was the inspiration behind the formation of the Leather Conservation Centre, also based here in Northampton, on the University campus. The collection consists of over 5000 items that span several centuries, cultures and crafts reflecting the development of leathercraft across the world. We are housed in the Abington Museum and have acquired more space in which to display many more exciting pieces. Website The Museum of Leather Craft

The Victoria & Albert Museum:- Cromwell Road, South Kensington, London SW7 2RL. UK. Tel: +44 (0) 2079422000. E-mail: Well worth visiting the museum, but it would be worth calling them prior to the visit as large museums do not always have all their collections on open display. The V&A works with many different educational, cultural and community organisations, both formally and informally to bring long term benefits to the institutions concerned, to the public - internationally and in the UK - and to the wider economy.

Victoria & Albert Museum interior showing eating/drinking area tour guide talking

Victoria and Albert Museum

Café area

Tours and Talks

Lending objects to other museums ensures that V&A collections reach a wider audience. The V&A seeks to make borrowing as straightforward as possible. In any one year, some 2,000 V&A objects can be seen in many venues throughout the UK. As the world's leading museum of art and design, the V&A enriches people's lives by promoting the practice of design and increasing knowledge, understanding and enjoyment of the designed world. Opening hours are 10.00-17.45 daily except Friday which is 10.00-22.00 (Café is open 10.00-17.15 except Friday 10.00-21.30). Website The Victoria & Albert Museum

Walsall Leather Museum:- Littleton Street, West Walsall, West Midlands WS2 8EQ. UK. Tel: 01922-721153. Fax: 01922-725827. E-mail: and E-mail: The Leather Museum is housed in a restored leather factory. Discover why Walsall became the British leather goods capital in this fascinating working museum, housed in a restored leather factory.

Walsall Leather Museum leather workshop for adults children measuring huge snakeskin saddleroom coffeeshop

Walsall Leather Museum

Adult workshop

Children with huge snakeskin

Saddleroom coffee shop

For two hundred years Walsall people have been making some of the world's finest saddles and leather goods and Walsall Leather Museum seeks to celebrate this great tradition and reflect the achievements of the leather craftsmen and women of Walsall. It is still home to over ninety leather companies between them making an astonishing variety of items which are exported to most parts of the world. Admission to the Museum is free. Website Walsall Leather Museum

Leather Conservation Services

Leather Conservation Studio:- 6 Woodland Avenue, Abington, Northampton, NN3 2BY. UK. Tel: 01604 717929. Fax: 08700 940055. Mobile: 07970 926143. E-mail: Contact: Theo Sturge. Leather Conservation & Restoration. The site for the conservation and restoration of historic leather, including leather furniture, upholstery, gilt leather, Spanish leather, leather screens and wall hangings, historic clothing, harness, coaches, cars, sedan chairs, saddles, luggage, boots and shoes etc. More modern items include Eames chairs, Barcelona chairs, and swan and egg chairs by Arne Jacobsen. Website Leather Conservation

The Leather Conservation Centre:- University Campus, Boughton Green Road, Northampton NN2 7AN. Tel: 01604 719766. The Leather Conservation Centre was founded in 1978 to conserve historic leathers and is based in Northampton. It is a major international centre for leather conservation, education and research.

 leather conservation centre Northamptonshire

The Leather Conservation Centre, Northampton

The Centre offers a comprehensive service in the conservation and restoration of leather objects of historic, cultural and artistic importance for national and local museums, historic houses and private clients. The Leather Conservation Centre aims to conserve, care and provide practical advice for a wide variety of historic and invaluable objects. Website Leather Conservation Centre

Sturge Conservation Studio:- 6 Woodland Avenue, Abington, Northampton, NN3 2BY. UK. Tel: 01604 717929. Fax: 08700 940055. Mobile: 07970 926143. E-mail: Contact: Theo Sturge. The studio specialises in the conservation and restoration of leather, but also offers services such as the lifting of Roman mosaics and wall plaster, the treatment of general antiquities archaeological material, the making of replicas, and training courses. If the work you need is outside the scope of the studio we will do our best to advise on alternatives. Website Sturge Conservation Studio


Livery Companies

The Leathersellers' Company:- 21 Garlick Hill, London EC4V 2AU. Tel: +44 (0) 20 7330 1444. Fax: +44 (0) 20 7330 1454. E-mail: The Leathersellers' Company is one of the ancient Livery Companies of the City of London, ranked fifteenth in the order of precedence. It was founded by royal charter in 1444 with authority to control the sale of leather within the City. The Company no longer has this regulatory role, and instead devotes its energies to support for charity, education and the British leather trade.

The Leathersellers' Company is made up of 150 liverymen and a variable number of freemen. There are three main routes into the freedom: by apprenticeship, patrimony (i.e. if the candidate's father is a member) or by purchase at the Company's invitation. Freemen are eligible for election onto the livery, and once on the livery, a member may be invited to serve higher office within the Company.


Leathersellers Hall map showing schols

list indicating various destinations

The Leathersellers' Company has been supporting education at all levels since the 17th century. As well as offering grants for university students, we are involved with the running of secondary schools in south London. These are Colfe's and The Leathersellers Federation of Schools (which consist of Prendergast Hilly Fields College and Prendergast Ladywell Fields College). The Company also subsidises the provision of Leather Technical Education at the British School of Leather Technology at the University of Northampton.

Although no longer the powerful controlling force it once was, the Leathersellers' Company remains actively involved with the British leather industry, providing funding for technical education, research, and the conservation and display of historic leather items, and supplying representatives to sit on the boards of various industry bodies.

The role of the UK Leather Federation (formerly the British Leather Confederation) is to represent and promote the interests of the UK leather-producing industry and all those who support, supply or use the output of the UK leather industry in their activities. Website The Leathersellers' Company

The Worshipful Company of Cordwainers:- Clothworkers’ Hall, Dunster Court, Mincing Lane, London EC3R 7AH. Tel: +44 (0) 20 7929 1121. Fax: +44 (0) 20 7929 1124. E-mail: Cordwainers are shoemakers. Today the Company exists primarily for charitable purposes and to promote fellowship amongst its members.
In the Middle Ages, the tradesmen of London began to form themselves into fraternities. Workers in metal, cloth, leather and other trades formed "guilds" to present a united front for their craft.

Those who worked with the finest leather were called Cordwainers because their material came from Cordoba in Spain. They developed a soft, durable goatskin leather known as Cordwain – the very finest leather available – importation of which contributed to the growing prosperity of London. Over a period of time, those who processed the leather formed their own guilds. The shoemakers, however, retained the name of "Cordwainer".


The first written proof of the Guild of Cordwainers is a document dated 1272, making the company one of the oldest Liveries in the City. In 1439, during the reign of Henry VI, the Company obtained the Royal Charter. This officially confirmed the operations of the Company and permitted it to own property, including its own hall. By the 20th century, the Company had evolved and its main concern had become its charitable works. To the present day, these include its almshouses, Cadets, pension schemes and care of the Blind, Deaf and Dumb, the poor and the infirm.

A small blue plaque in the garden of St. Paul’s Churchyard facing Cannon Street commemorates five Halls built on the same site – a site which had been associated with the Company since 1316. An impressive new Hall was completed in 1909, but was destroyed during the Second World War. The Company gratefully accepted the invitation of its President to use the facilities of the Law Society in Chancery Lane and continued to do so until the Company moved to Clothworkers’ Hall in the City of London in 2005. Website The Worshipful Company of Cordwainers

The Worshipful Company of Saddlers:- Saddlers' Hall, 40 Gutter Lane, London EC2V 6BR. Tel: 020 7726 8661. Fax: 020 7600 0386. For general enquiries E-mail: For historical research E-mail: The Worshipful Company of Saddlers is one of the very oldest of the City of London Livery companies. The earliest surviving records of a Guild of Saddlers in London date from circa 1160 AD, although the guild could well pre-date that.

Saddler's Hall main entrance

Saddlers' Hall, main entrance

The earliest known document which refers to the Saddlers of London is a scrap of parchment, now in the library of Westminster Abbey where it was taken following the dissolution of the Church of St Martin-le-Grand. It records the details of an agreement between the church and the Guild of Saddlers. It has been variously dated between 1160 and 1193. There is a tradition that a Saddlers' guild existed in Anglo-Saxon times, before the Norman Conquest. Although there is no longer positive evidence to support this, it is quite possible that an earlier fraternity of saddlers did exist.

Today, the Saddlers' Company still has a close interest in, and involvement with, its original trade. This is exemplified in its support of the Society of Master Saddlers, its leadership of the development of saddlery training standards, its support of saddlery trainees and apprentices through bursaries, awards and prizes, and its promotion of British saddlery.
Website The Worshipful Company of Saddlers


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leather shapes leather shapes