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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
People say there is no such thing as a stupid question... but I think the upcoming question may challenge that theory. So why am I asking it in public if I feel it's such a stupid question? That's simple... because I'm hoping that somehow, someway, there may be the slightest answer I can take away and use.

So, what's the question?

I have a bunch of old portfolios and briefcases and other things that have a leather-look to them, but there is no tag that says synthetic or leather... I have also tried to look the companies up on the internet, bu to no avail. Does anyone know of a way to be pretty sure that something is synthetic leather over real leather? (I realize it's impossible to tell the 'good' imitations from the real deal, but if there was someway I could tell if it was synthetic...I'd really appreciate any feedback)

Please and Thank you

Sb
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
haha, ah! how could i forget about the DNA tester in the basement? lol

or send it out to a DNA tester.... and get a very confused reply
*your sample doesn't seem to /have/ a DNA* *grin*
 

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The only way I know involves cutting it or scraping it, because what you really want is to see what is underneath the upper "leather" part. Real leather generally has a distinct look and texture on the 'rough' side of it. Pleather does not have this brownish, unkept, loose, don't know how else to explain it, look and texture. That would be my advice.
 

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Urgh I hate the way everythings leather these days.

a girl wants a nice pair of black 'leather' gloves, so goes into all the nice cheapo shops like H&M to find they now only sell real ones and make it out like thats a good thing! I foudn some in peacocks but they really did look like i had binbags on my hands.

anyway!

Yeah the smell

also the texture might be more uniform if its fake, like no imperfections etc?
 

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Well... you already own them, so what's the harm? If you throw them away, you'd contribute to waste. If you donate them and buy new plastic ones, you contribute to over-consumption.

It's better to use them even if they are leather, than to eliminate them -- if you are concerned about environmental issues. If not, then maybe consider donating them to a women's program that helps battered women build their lives and gain job skills to start their lives over. (or do that anyway and buy plastic ones, if that suits you.)
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by OregonAmy View Post

Well... you already own them, so what's the harm? If you throw them away, you'd contribute to waste. If you donate them and buy new plastic ones, you contribute to over-consumption.

It's better to use them even if they are leather, than to eliminate them -- if you are concerned about environmental issues. If not, then maybe consider donating them to a women's program that helps battered women build their lives and gain job skills to start their lives over. (or do that anyway and buy plastic ones, if that suits you.)
I agree compleatly, I have several leather jackets that I will not just stop wearing.

Why waste what you already have.

I would not worry about and when they wear out just buy a friendlier version.

Course that might take some time my jackets are all 10 + years old and still look new
 

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I recently purchased leather shoes from lifeline. They are pumas that had obviously been donated without ever being worn (they were in perfect nick, no wear, no scuffs, a new design).

Anyhow, I purchased them because the money was going to a good cause not Puma the company. I have leather bags and stuff which I continue to use.

I would not buy leather directly from the manufacturer though.
 

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Quote:
Urgh I hate the way everythings leather these days.

a girl wants a nice pair of black 'leather' gloves, so goes into all the nice cheapo shops like H&M to find they now only sell real ones and make it out like thats a good thing! I foudn some in peacocks but they really did look like i had binbags on my hands.

anyway!

Yeah the smell

also the texture might be more uniform if its fake, like no imperfections etc?
I agree. I don't even like the way it looks, I think it looks gaudy. I never have. But that's just me.

I don't think there's any specific way to tell, unfortunately.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Pirate Ferret View Post

Urgh I hate the way everythings leather these days.

a girl wants a nice pair of black 'leather' gloves, so goes into all the nice cheapo shops like H&M to find they now only sell real ones and make it out like thats a good thing! I foudn some in peacocks but they really did look like i had binbags on my hands.

anyway!

Yeah the smell

also the texture might be more uniform if its fake, like no imperfections etc?
You're in the UK, right? (I think I remember you being in the UK). If so, and you have an Internacional - damn it, I cannot spell it, but whatever - near you, they have pretty and cheap (£4) faux leather 'driving' gloves.
 

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I'm not sure it'd work, but since most (if not all) fake leathers are polymers (plastics), they'd be pretty impervious to strong acids, while natural stuff wouldn't be. A bit of some type of strong acid like HCl or sulfuric on it and you may be able to tell.

Where to get some HCl or sulfuric? I suspect a pool supply store or something like that...even a hardware store might sell it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
well, i'm a little wary of introducing strong acids to them, especially since if I do that, I could easily get yelled at for destorying perfectly good portfolios...a conflict I'd jsut assume avoid...

I did try cutting a little sliver off of an edge, and it seems to be more synthetic...doesn't remind me of any leather I've worked with before (in horse riding gear)...

and no, I don't think i'll be throwing them away no matter what... i'm just a little grossed out by the thought of holding cow skin in my hands and carrying it around all the time... I have a pair of leather boots... and the idea of using leather makes me uncomfortable, and i was mainly looking to overcome this insecurity...

So, with the idea that they're probably synthetic, I'm going to use them to the best of my ability...but i was thinking about covering them with book covers or something (just as a mental thing)... besides, that way I can draw all over them


Thanks for the suggestions everyone, i really appreciate it, and I must admit, i got a lot more responses than I was expecting!!
 

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I think what Sushi8kat was trying to say was the back of real leather looks like suede. The backing of fake products is cloth. If you can find the inside of a seam, you should be able to tell.
 
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