I always consider owning a leather bag as an investment. Aside that it is a classic, a leather bag last for a long time and aged elegantly. That is why allocating enough money to buy a nice leather bag has always been a part of my checklist. But how do you know if you are buying the right bag using your hard earned money? Would you buy it personally or online?
Well, If it is possible I would always prefer to buy it personally so that I could see and feel the product. Specially if the item is a bit expensive, I would not risk spending for something that I would not want to even used when receive. But this situation, should not limit you on taking the risk on buying online. Most specially if the item that you really want is not available in your area.
Buying a leather bag (or any item) online is very tricky. For one you wouldn’t have the chance to see it in person or even feel its quality. Inspection is very limited. But aside from the variety, one of the best factor that I really like in buying online is the price drop compare to the item in a physical store. I guess there is always a cons and pros in every aspect.
If you are itching to get a leather bag online, go for it, but remember to check out the following before you even purchase.
Wearing: Fitbit Blaze, Uniqlo pants and Converse sneakers
5 things to check before buying a leather bag online
- Reviews are very important – This I think is the first thing you really need to check if you are buying an item online, reviews from previous clients. Check if there are more satisfied customers than those that are unsatisfied. Make time to read and check the other peoples experiences about the product you are going to buy. If there are not enough information in the website, you can check out the companies Facebook or Instagram account. It is also a way on checking if the online store is legit or not. If you already felt to trust the brand then we can move on to the next.
2. Type of Leather Used – Of course you would want to have a bag that would last even for a lifetime, and just like leather jackets or shoes, you would want to choose a bag that is made of full grain leather. Full-grain leather is the strongest and most durable leather and since the grain is so tight, it can resists moisture very well. Over time, full-grain leather will look nicer and will be more attractive as it aged.
3. Country of Origin – This doesn’t matter to me before when I was growing up. I did not thought that the country of origin would be very important if you are buying something online (Specially now that China made products are really prevalent). When it comes to leather manufacturing, most of the times, the origin of the leather determines the quality of the bag. I guess just like how clothing brands that originated in Paris differ from the same clothing brand made from the other side of the world.
Some countries that constantly produce quality leather includes US, Russia, Italy, Brazil, China and India, to name a few. A brand I discovered online recently is called Mahi Leather. It is a UK-based company that produces quality leather manufactured on the other side of the world, India. The company is working on a family workshop in Kampur, India’s famous leather region.
MAHI Leather takes its name from the Mahi River in India. For many this is a sacred river and in a country where 103 million people lack safe water its significance is more than symbolic; that’s why MAHI Leather donates $1.50 from the sale of each bag to FRANK Water, a UK based charity which has helped over 300,000 people gain access to clean water since 2005.
4. Tanning Process – It is also good to know how the leather you are buying is made. Tanning process affects the pricing range of the leather does it is good for you to know these things. There are two types of tanning process you would need to understand; chrome tanning and vegetable tanning.
Chrome tanned leather involves the use of chromium and other harsh chemicals. It is made faster and sold cheaper. 90% of the leather market are actually chrome tanned leather. While Vegetable tanned leather is produced in an eco-friendly way and the process takes several weeks to finish. And since the entire process is longer, most vegetable tanned leather products tend to be thicker and rigid but begin to soften overtime. Vegetable tanning works best for higher end bags.
The bags that I recently got from MAHI uses the simple beauty of natural materials: 100% supple Indian cows’ leather, dyed with natural vegetable dyes; 100% cotton linings, sturdy brass fittings and YKK zippers. It is actually good to know this information making me even more attached to the bag, knowing that I could probably used it for the rest of my life.
5. Quality Made – Before you even decide to click the buy button make sure to inspect first the quality of the little parts. I know this could be a bit difficult specially if you are buying a leather bag online, but the good thing is most of the websites does have a zoom in photos so you can check out the individual parts of the item. Here are the things you would need to look at; buckles, zippers, metallic rings, handles, locks, shoulder strap fittings and even the strap itself. Check out and examined the details of the bag on each side. And do remember that metal zippers are better than plastic ones. And if it is possible the check the bag with its zipper closed and open.
Some other things you need to check could be the design, functionality and pricing, which is very dependent on your liking. Pricing shouldn’t always be the basis of a quality made products. There are some which is priced more because of the name they carry and there are those which are more affordable and produces a better product. Remember that it is always better to get a premium product rather than a premium brand name.
To know more about Mahi leather bags, you can check out there website here.