Tatsuno Wax-filled Leather
Located to the west of Himeji, Tatsuno in Hyogo Prefecture is Japan’s largest producer of leather. The town has been making leather since the 13th century.
For this leather, the secondary tanning, dyeing and finishing are performed at a highly skilled tannery in Tatsuno, and wax is laboriously soaked into the core of the leather before finishing with a light tumbling.
When the shoes have not been worn, the wax hardens and the leather feels slightly stiff, but after wearing them, the leather softens by body temperature and fits the foot more intimately. The unique shades of color produced by the wax that permeates the leather are also distinctive. These shades change the complexion and enrich the character of the shoes as you wear them in.
A wrinkled or grainy texture that usually develops over time may be seen from the outset due to the light rubbing at the end of the treatment process. The leather is “naked” showing the natural markings of leather, which are often masked or subdued in the finishing process of other leathers. The leather shows how beautiful such “naked” leather could be. When this leather is made into shoes, each pair takes on a unique character with a rustic and natural charm.
The leather is permeated with plenty of wax, making it resistant to water damage. The shoes can be worn even on rainy days.
How to care
Brushing is all that is required for daily care. Remove dust from the shoes with horse hair brush after you wear them. This simple process takes less than a minute and makes a big difference in the long run if you remember to do it each time. If your shoes get wet or muddy in the rain, wipe them with a dry cloth before applying the brush.
The leather is fairly resistant to water, but if your shoes get wet or muddy in the rain, wipe them off with a soft cloth and allow them to dry naturally. Do not use waterproof spray. Solvents in the spray may dissolve the wax on the surface of the leather and cause stains. (If you happened to have the stains by the spray, please warm the stained part of the leather by hair dryer and rub the leather. The stain is likely to be less visible by the heat-blended wax inside the leather.)
If you would like to add luster, use a small amount of shoe cream to spread a thin layer over the entire shoe and polish it with a brush or soft cloth. It is useful to have a colorless shoe cream that can be used on any color of leather.