Ever wondered how some of the leather products you purchase have a distinct pattern, stamp and look? Not the kind of pattern that is originally part of an animal hide but something that seems to be done artificially? There’s a process called leather embossing, a critical part of leather manufacturing, in which rollers, metal plates and other tools are utilized to produce these designs. In this article, we will cover the basics of leather embossing; from its types to reasons and standardized procedures.
What is Embossing Leather?
Leather embossing can be described as a process in which monograms, logos, images, patterns and texts are imprinted on leather. This can be done in one session and even over a period of time. For an instant result, leather is stamped and finished and for the other process, weights are used to press against the leather. Hence, leather is embossed in order to achieve patterns on the animal skin. At times, embossed leather can take up the entire surface of the animal hide.
Types of Embossing
The three types of leather embossing, amongst others, are as follows:
In this type of leather embossing, processes are conducted without using color or pigments. Thus, what you see seems to be part of the animal hide and not an overcoating or additional procedure.
Opposite of blind embossing is color embossing. In this type, colors and pigments are added while leather is stamped, pressed or undergone other embossing methods.
In this specific type of leather embossing, gold leaf is used.
What Is Croc Embossed Leather?
Croc embossed leather, also known as crocodile embossed leather, is of bovine origin. This animal hide is embossed with a crocodile skin-like pattern to achieve an appearance that is similar to the genuine reptile skin.
What Is Snake Embossed Leather?
Snake Embossed leather is the one that has been embossed with a pattern similar to the skin of a snake.
How to Emboss Leather?
Before we discuss the process of embossing leather, let’s touch upon the circumstances that affect embossing itself.
- The pressure used to stamp the leather is crucial; the higher the pressure the more prominent and durable the leather embossing becomes.
- Leather embossing is more durable if the pressure is applied for a long term.
- The temperature of tools used to emboss leather is also important. Tools should ideally be hot.
- And lastly, the leather that is being embossed should be damp as it results in much prominent and clear embossing.
Leather Embossing — The Process
The tools that are used to emboss leather can be both manual and automatic. The tools that are utilized in factories are actually incredibly fast and provide rapid results. As we said before, the leather needs to be moist to attain better results which is why it is dampened first after which stamps and other tools are used to clamp onto its surface. It is kept in that position for some time, ranging from a few minutes to even a couple of hours. The best way to emboss leather is to apply the chemicals in a uniform manner while following the rest of the rules ardently.
Chemicals For Embossing Leather
Chemicals are used to elevate the results of leather. The purpose behind the use of such chemicals is to get images and designs stamped or clamped that are crystal clear and visible. Moreover, silicon, acrylic and other water-based solubles are in these chemicals.
Reasons to Emboss Leather
Before leather is embossed, it is sanded to remove irregularities and scars present in the animal hide. Due to this, the process of leather embossing aids in removing the natural markings on the hide. In this way, all the injuries and scars of the animal hide are removed. In addition, the leather becomes uniform and the entire circumference of the leather appears to be silky smooth.
Embossed Leather vs Printed Leather
Printed leather is essentially a technique that is used to finish leather. Due to this technique, leather gets to have incredible designs, colors, textures and other effects. Now comes the difference between printed leather and embossed leather.
Printed leather is basically a macro category whereas embossed leather is its sub-category. Furthermore, all the motifs you see on leather are printed whereas if you find a leather with a reptile skin-like appearance it is probably embossed.
Engraving Leather Vs. Embossing Leather
The tools that are used to emboss leather are also used to engrave them. But in order to understand the difference between leather engraving and embossing leather; in embossing, the leather gets compressed, whereas when you engrave leather, you cut and scrape it to remove some of the leather. Both methods are used to enhance the quality as well as personalize the leather.
Yes, real leather can also be embossed along with other grades and types of leather.
The manufacturing process of leather on its own is extremely expensive due to the complex additions of tools and applications. Leather embossing is simply a part of it, making it an expensive process as well.
You can un-emboss leather using a dryer or heat gun, however, you cannot remove the pressure marks.
All kinds of leather, thick or thin, can be embossed. You simply need to have the right tools and strategy.
Embossed leather hides are hides extracted from different animals, mostly reptiles and exotic animals. Leather embossing is a technique used in the manufacturing of leather right before it is finished. Hence, we hope you now understand what embossed leather means and it’s different requirements and processes. Ideally, it should not be confused with printed or engraved leather; this is patterned leather with many benefits. Finally, as an example,you may have seen wallet embossing in reptile skins and other designs.