World of Luxury Leather: My Journey as Tanner Leatherstein

Tanner Leatherstein

Luxury leather goods have long held an enigmatic allure, captivating the hearts and minds of consumers worldwide. From meticulously crafted handbags to impeccably tailored jackets, these pieces embody a fusion of timeless elegance and artisanal mastery. At the heart of this allure lies the intrinsic quality of the leather itself – a material that has stood the test of time, evolving to embody opulence, sophistication, and individuality.

As Tanner Leatherstein, I've dedicated myself to unraveling the mysteries of luxury leather, peeling back the layers to reveal the essence of craftsmanship and authenticity. With each dissected handbag or scrutinized pair of shoes, I delve deep into the world of leather, uncovering its secrets and sharing them with a global audience. My journey is not just about evaluating products; it's a profound exploration of the art, culture, and craftsmanship interwoven within the fabric of the leather industry.

Featured on ABC News

Imagine my excitement when I had the opportunity to share my passion for leather on a national platform. ABC News on February 8, 2024 with Linsey Davis recently interviewed me for their segment "TIKTALK: Volkan Yilmaz helps people understand and experience leather." It was an incredible experience to discuss my expertise in dissecting luxury leather goods and evaluating whether the hefty price tag is truly worth it. Being featured on ABC News was a surreal moment and a testament to the impact of my work in the leather community.

Exploring Spanish Craftsmanship

One of the things that truly fascinates me, which I share in the interview, is the quality of craftsmanship found in leather products made in Spain, especially in a little village called Ubrique. The quality of the craftsmanship, the ones that were coming from Spain, especially this little village called Ubrique, was spectacular. I've seen varying qualities from products coming from Italy, France, but Spain was very consistent. This little village named Ubrique which I've never heard of before had a very interesting story.

As I flew there to explore, I discovered that it was about the culture. This town had about over a hundred years of leatherworking. About 12,000 people live in this little village, 9,000 of them working with leather. So it's pure leather culture. There's something magical about the way artisans in Ubrique have perfected their skills over generations, creating some of the finest leather goods in the world. My journey to Ubrique opened my eyes to the rich heritage and tradition of Spanish leather craftsmanship, and I couldn't wait to share it with all of you.

The Worth of Luxury

Now, let's delve into the million-dollar question: is luxury leather really worth it? Well, "is it worth it" is a very personal question, I think. For me, I'm all about authenticity and quality. I value natural, authentic, variant-looking leathers that tell a story and exude character. However, I understand that everyone has their own priorities when it comes to luxury. Some of you might prioritize brand prestige or design aesthetics over everything else, and that's totally okay. What matters most is finding leather goods that speak to you and bring you joy.

So, the worth of luxury leather ultimately depends heavily on your perspective on things. There are alternatives that cost one-tenth of the price, one-fifth of the price, and they might serve your needs just as well. In fact, there are more brands entering the space that offer quite affordable luxury options. Brands like Polene and Strathberry are beautiful examples of these upcoming brands that provide high-quality leather goods at more accessible price points. So, whether you're splurging on a designer handbag or opting for a budget-friendly alternative, the worth of luxury is subjective and varies from person to person.

ReadLeather, Love, and Ubrique: The Polene Story 

Empowering Leather Enthusiasts

Beyond dissecting products from top-tier brands, I've also shared my own journey as a leather craftsman. I started that seven to eight years ago after spending one year in consulting and realized corporate is not for me. I came back to leather and it was an Etsy shop at the beginning with my wife. I was just cutting and sewing leather goods in our kitchen in Chicago. And we got a great response. It's been a wild ride, but I wouldn't have it any other way.

Now, I just flew around the world, finding leathers I love. And it grew to a point, I'm not one of those luxury fashion-level brands at this point, but with the audience, the demand changed. My audience, mostly women, is now asking for fashion bags, which wasn't my style initially. So I'm trying to go towards that space, hoping to launch a new line of products next year. By sharing my expertise and insights, I hope to empower fellow leather enthusiasts to make informed choices and appreciate the artistry behind each piece. Whether you're a seasoned collector or just starting your leather journey, there's always something new to learn and explore.

Practical Tips for Leather Evaluation

As we gear up for New York Fashion Week, I want to equip you with some practical tips for evaluating leather goods. Leather is a sensory experience, so trust your senses – touch, sight, and smell – to assess the authenticity and craftsmanship of each piece. Pay attention to the details, from the feel of the leather to the stitching and finishing. Real leather possesses a lively, earthy feel, while synthetic materials may feel plasticky. Additionally, take note of any chemical smells, as they may indicate lower-quality materials or manufacturing processes. Finally, reading the labels can provide valuable information about the materials used and the country of origin. With these tips in mind, you'll be able to shop with confidence and find leather treasures that truly stand the test of time.

Celebrating the Leather Community

I've been truly amazed by the overwhelming support and enthusiasm from the vibrant leather community not just on TikTok. The engaging discussions, lively debates about designer brands, and the generous sharing of tips and tricks for caring for leather goods all highlight the deep passion we all share for this timeless material. 

As Tanner Leatherstein, I'm dedicated to nurturing a sense of camaraderie and mutual support within this community. It's inspiring to see how we come together to celebrate our shared love for leather and to learn from one another. I'm immensely grateful for each and every one of you who joins me on this journey, contributing your unique perspectives and enriching our collective understanding of leather craftsmanship and appreciation. 


My journey as Tanner Leatherstein has been a captivating exploration of luxury leather. Featured on ABC News, I've shared insights on dissecting leather goods and evaluating their worth. As I keep exploring this fascinating world, I invite you to join me on this journey of discovery and appreciation. Whether we're closely examining designer bags or admiring the work of Spanish craftsmen, there's always more to learn and admire. So, grab your favorite leather item, and let's explore the wonderful world of luxury leather together.

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