What Is Veg-Tanned Leather?

Artisan crafting leather accessories

Here at Lost Little One we only ever use ethically sourced, premium veg-tanned leather to create all of our designs. For those who are unfamiliar with vegetable tanning, it is the ancient, traditional method for producing beautiful, malleable leather.

This technique is slow fashion in motion and uses natural resources and artisanal skill to turn hide into a soft, workable material. All of our products are created this way, with no harmful chemicals or machinery used!

Although a much longer and more intricate process, vegetable tanning is environmentally friendlier as it produces no chemical waste, which means it’s biodegradable in the right conditions. Due to the natural tannins, vegetable tanned leather ages very well. It changes and softens, forming a unique patina. This method of tanning is associated with tradition and craft, but in reality very few tanneries have the capability to produce vegetable tanned leather.

Approximately only 10% of the world’s leather is still created in this way, and it takes almost 30 times longer to create.

Here at Lost Little One we refuse to take the easy route at the expense of heritage, humans and the earth. The more I’ve learned about the art of vegetable tanning and the caretakers of this venerable trade, the more amazed and enthralled I’ve become. I’m humbled to be a small part of this world.

Purchasing a veg-tanned product for you means that the leather will soften and change as you use it, it will get supple and form a unique patina. I create our pieces with this ageing process in the forefront of my mind as I need to ensure that I think about how the bag will look in a year’s time once the leather has had an opportunity to wear and age, getting better like a fine wine.

Ancient leather tannery in Morocco