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LEFA - An ecologically sound alternative

LEFA, LeatherFiber, is an Oeko-Tex certified material. It is a by-product of leather production and is therefore resource-saving and sustainable.

What is leather fiber fabric?

Leather Fiber Fabric LEFA, is a material that is based on leather, but is not real leather. It consists of leather scraps, binders and fatliquors that are combined to form a uniform mass. This mass is fixed between two layers of fabric and finished with a non-hazardous PU coating. This coating often has a grain punched on it to give the material that classic leather look.

The so-called "bonded leather" (English name for LEFA) is durable and forms a similarly beautiful patina as real leather. What used to be offcuts, we can now process into contemporary collections that are almost on a par with real leather. LEFA leather fiber fabric is made from leather scraps and is therefore extremely sustainable.

How is leather fiber fabric made?

When leather is manufactured, a whole lot of production waste is produced. Here, the thicker hides or skins are often split into several layers, which is called "splitting". There are several processes here. For example, the top grain on leather may be sanded off. Other leathers, in turn, are cut into specific sizes. The scraps that are created here are not discarded, but used as resources for materials such as leather fiber cloth.

The leather scraps are shredded and mixed with natural fats, natural latex and tanning agents. The end result resembles felt fabric held together by fabrics on the top and bottom. The top side is covered with a polyurethane layer, which is often embossed to resemble real leather.

What is the difference between leather fiber fabric and genuine leather?

Whether it is smooth leather or suede, genuine leather consists of a single hide. Depending on the thickness of the hide, it may be split horizontally into multiple layers. Genuine leather is often sanded to create a regular surface. The leather is dyed in one piece and coated with special varnishes depending on the use and type of leather.

Unlike genuine leather, the production of leather fiber cloth is more like the production of felt. Leather scraps are shredded and mixed into a uniform mass with the help of additives and fillers. The dry material looks like a suede without coating. To be sold as leather fiber cloth, the material must have a leather content of at least 50%.

According to EU regulation, leather fiber fabric cannot be called real leather, even if real leather is one of the components of the fabric.

How do I care for leather fiber products?

Caring for leather fiber is just like our other products, uncomplicated and quick to do.

Need tips and tricks for leather care? Feel free to check out our blog post:

Properly care for leather

Why is leather fiber fabric becoming more and more popular?

Leather fiber fabric is particularly environmentally friendly. The leftovers are reused and not thrown away. The CO₂ balance is also lower, as animal husbandry and agriculture play no role in the production of leather fiber fabric here. The material is easy to clean and resembles real leather in look and feel. Leather fiber fabric is the perfect way to return materials to the recycling loop in a variety of ways. This is also referred to as upcycling. In this process, resources can be conserved and already existing materials can be processed into high-quality and stylish bags.

In upcycling, waste/by-products (such as leather) are upgraded and become a new product. This contemporary idea has already inspired us to create many timelessly beautiful models. In the process of recycling, fabrics that have already been used are revalued. Already existing fabrics are reused and recycled.

Our models made of LEFA, which are part of our GREEN LINE, prove how beautiful and stylish sustainability can look.

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