Sourcing The Right Leather.
When it comes to luxury footwear, there are three important elements when creating products; material, craft and fit. At Ross Oliver, we take all of them just a serious as the next, but what really goes into selecting key materials for a design in the marking? Well as founder and creative director of Ross Oliver, let me explain.
It is no secrete that we at Ross Oliver pride ourselves on the British craftsmanship used to construct all of our designs. But quality materials plays a crucial part along side manufacturing techniques. This is why we use only the finest materials available, to compliment the traditional craftsmanship used when constructing luxurious designs. Some materials sourced locally here in the UK, some picked from Italy's infamous leather supplier, but all are tested by myself and a member of my manufacturing team. We don't cut corners with our devotion to quality and luxury.
So, what do we test for? Firstly full-grain leathers are the purest and most natural form of leather available, is why looking into the leathers imperfections is the first thing we do. Imperfections that are all characteristic we are keen to inherit into our products, but if there is a lack consistency, flow or management, we simple so no. Then we test for smell, colour, patina over time, durability and the conditions in which the leather is stored. Compromising slightly in any of those areas can dramatically change the outcome of what you are trying to achieve. Then there is the ethical side, like to consider ourselves as a socially conscious brand, so the living and well-being of the animals in which the leathers are sourced is also important to us. This is no quick process - 18 months on average to be exact, but the outcome speaks for itself and we strongly believe this is Ann investment in time worth making.
The other question is, why do we look for expensive, well maintained and quality leathers? It is more than just for reputation and expense. It also transfers to the life expectancy of products, it's comfort, look and feel. Full-grain leathers have a tendency to remain durable, in shape and supportive whilst maintaining a high quality, luxurious look. In contrast to cheap materials that crease, tare, stain and last not even close to half the life of quality product.
As a result of our process, all Ross Oliver products are expected to last longer and feel better. If they are properly maintained of course.
Ross Oliver Saunders - Founder & Creative Director