Tanner Leatherstein reviews a furniture brand: Poly & Bark! Let’s see if they pass Tanner’s quality test. In this video, we’ll answer the following questions:
- Did Poly & Bark’s chairs passed Tanner’s 20/20 leather quality test?
- What’s included in the box when you order something from Poly & Bark?
- How can you request sample swatches from Poly & Bark?
Let us know your thoughts and questions in the comments section below. We always read your comments! If you have brand recommendations that you’d like for Tanner to review, just leave a comment below. We’ll see you again next time. A quick reminder to be authentic, be leather-savvy!
DISCLAIMER: We are, in no way, affiliated with the brand mentioned. This video and article is solely for educational purposes to let you know about the leathers that the brand uses for their products and to provide you with a better understanding of its quality. At the end of the day, you still have to decide if it’s worth it for you or not.
TRANSCRIPTION / WRITTEN ARTICLE
Hi, everyone! This is Tanner here. Today, we’re going to unbox a leather chair we got from our good brand, Poly & Bark. I wanted to introduce this brand to you that I ran into about six months ago when I was looking for leather seats for my home. I found this company with good pictures and value for the leather that they claimed they use for their chair, and I purchased one for my home. I loved it. For the price, it was amazing, amazing quality.
I know a lot of people are looking for leather chairs and sofas for their homes, and they kind of don’t know where to start their research or how to assess the quality and price. These things may get really pricey, and it might make you think it’s great, but it might be misleading. This is a common practice in the leather industry. Since I liked what they offered me for that price, I went ahead and bought more stuff for the clubhouse here for our scenes. And now, one of our chairs arrived. We’re going to open it together and look at it from a leather tanning standpoint. Hopefully, it will give you some perspective when you’re shopping for leather sofas or chairs for your home.
We are not affiliated or associated with the brand, Poly & Bark, in any way. We’re just providing our honest and genuine opinions on their products and offers for the benefit of the consumers.
Alright! Let’s get to the unboxing part. Uhm– scissors. Well, I’m good at losing things, and it’s going to take too long for me to find the scissors. I guess, as usual, my keys will do it. Let’s get to it!
Let’s see. We found our first cushion here. Leather-wise, it looks great. I choose the option– I believe they call it tan. This is the only full aniline option. They also have a leather swatch that they send you for free if you want to look at their leather before you make a purchase. I have the swatches with me, too. I’m going to show you in the later part of the video, but this is a full-aniline furniture leather. We can see all the grains and all that stuff, and that’s why it’s very attractive to me. I will talk more in detail about the leather in a bit.
There’s a box here. I don’t know if there are parts or anything inside. Let’s put it aside. Let’s keep digging. Alright, one more layer of foam. A little bit of paper for the instructions. Let’s see how much assembly will be required. Hopefully, not so much. It seems like it came as a whole piece. Let’s take this off. Well, it’s not light. It definitely feels like a hardwood frame which is good. It looks like a hardwood frame.
The bottom cushion comes attached already with a little wrap-around underneath. Let me show you. That’s a pretty cool technique. I haven’t seen this before, but it’s pretty secure there. And it’s a good weight item which always feels good, and again, the leather. Look at this. It shows all the imperfections – little disease marks, scars of the leather and the animal. There’s a little scratch that we see here. So, it’s top-grain furniture leather. It’s buffed off slightly and finished with an aniline dye to accentuate those little imperfections and that’s what I love in the leather anyways.
This seems like the only and final piece of the assembly that we need to do. This is the bottom so it goes in the back. We have a couple of papers that came with the box. The chair looks complete to me but we’re going to read this and let’s see what’s inside the box to ensure that we’re not missing anything.
In the instructional manual, it says, “Care and Use.” The following are what’s listed under it:
- Recommended for indoor and residential use. Of course.
- Keep the product from heat and direct sunlight. Yes, because leather dyes are susceptible to sunlight. It might lighten or have some changes in color if it’s under direct sunlight for so long durations.
- Gently dust with a soft cloth to keep it free from dirt. Those are all the things that we keep on saying about keeping your leather.
- Noticeable soiling can be wiped with a clean, wrung out cloth. Do not soak or vigorously rub the leather and always wipe excess moisture with a dry cloth. If it’s a little bit soiled, you can always wipe it clean with a dry cloth. Never use heavily wet or soaked cloths or always wipe excess moisture with dry cloth from your leather.
- Do not use chemical cleaners or polishes. This is very important. You might change the nature of the finish that you really like on that leather.
- For heavy soiling, please consult with a leather specialist and professional cleaner. I agree.
- New, unwashed denim jeans may transfer dye onto the leather, leaving permanent stains. That’s a good point. If you have brand new jeans and you haven’t washed them, if you sit on this, you might transfer the dye from the jeans into the leather since it still has very open pores. It might suck the dye inside. It’s light-colored leather. You might not like the result.
- Fluff all loose cushions regularly to maintain shape.
- Ensure the feet are tightly fastened. Try not to drag them to avoid damage to the furniture or your floor.
- The leather will scuff and will develop into a beautiful vintage patina with use. I completely agree. We’re going to get to that in a bit once we’re reviewing the leather in detail, but that’s what I love about this leather and we will inspect this in further detail.
So now, let’s look at the leather. As you can see now, we got two of the same chair and this one is significantly different looking from the other one. Let’s look at this one. This one has more pebbles because this was a looser part of the leather and this one has more scars and skin diseases that the animal had. Again, that’s the beauty of the aniline finish. We see everything that was in the hide. There’s nothing to hide, you know. Pun intended.
Actually, this thing is just showing you the history of the animal, and every bit, every section of the leather, from leather to leather, will be different even though they’ve been processed in the same drum, factory, or recipe. We need to embrace it that way and just love the authentic and unique nature of this craft that it’s giving us.
After pointing out the differences between the two chairs, we can go to the touch step which is the second part of the 20/20 Leather Review. This is not so slippery, it has like little waxy touch. Definitely feels like leather. It gives you that energy and that’s pretty good.
Let’s do the smell portion. It has a very light smell. It’s not disturbing, but I can’t smell the oils that they have infused in this finish because of this pull-up and scratch effect that they achieved with this finish. So, it smells pleasant, too.
Now, we’re going to go to the read section of our 20/20 Leather Review. To do that, I want to open the pillow side to see if there are further labels on it. Okay, it says leather, full-grain leather shell, or full-grain leather. Yes. I think it’s slightly buffed but no, it’s not corrected. So in my standards, it’s full-grain, too, but some may qualify it as a top grain which is both fair game, in my opinion. The feeling is polyester or polyester fiber. It was made by the end of last year. I don’t see anything else here.
But, let’s dig deeper to see the back of the leather which is always telling you the story of the leather, too. When you see this, it’s not a fabric mesh on the back, you can be sure this is real leather. You know, this cut or cross sections – the grain and the back. See? They even put a little thing here. This might probably be the sizing of the hide that they used for it. I can’t really clearly read it but 358? It might be the 3.5 square meters of the hide this was cut out off.
Overall, everything we read, touched, smelled, and looked at all qualifies and satisfies our tanning and leather senses. So, from a leather standpoint, this is really good. Craftsmanship standpoint, they made a good product. I think the filling is pretty solid. I like firm chairs. It feels pretty firm when you’re sitting on it. It has a character to it and as you use this, it’s going to get darker because of all the interaction with our hands, oils, and sweats that you’ll transfer onto this leather. The patina will darken this. It will definitely get better as you use it.
I think we can end the video by showing you a leather that might have been used in productions like that to give you a further perspective on furniture leather, and I can say confidently that if you’re looking for a leather chair or leather sofa, Poly & Bark is a great value for your money.
Overall, if you’re looking for a leather chair or sofa, Poly & Bark is a great brand. As far as I understand, all the new native digital company, they’re going for the best efficiency – direct from manufacturing, direct to consumer. Taking all the middlemen out of the process so you can reflect all the savings. They have free shipping. They have a 100-day return guarantee if I’m not wrong. Free shipping and free returns. The website is beautiful. The customer support is pretty good. We paid $699 or $700 for each of these chairs. For what they are, I think it’s a pretty good price. From what I’ve seen in the market, these go for over $1,000 to $1,500. Sometimes, even $2,000 when there’s a good leather chair. And even their sofa and other things are pretty, pretty fairly priced. It’s a good option to check and from a leather quality standpoint, I love it.
As I said, this is made out of leather very similar to this. Usually, furniture leathers are processed as full hides (not sides) so they can get big pieces out of those. Leather, just to give you a reference, could be as big as this one. This is a very good example of what Poly & Bark uses for their furniture leather. I bet this is slightly better. I selected this one somewhere in Europe last week and this is about 6.7– sorry, 67 square feet and 6.2 square meters. It’s a heavy bull hide entirely and this can make some good furniture, just to give you a reference.
Now, I’m going to show you the free leather swatches that they sent me before I made my first purchase from them. If you’re not sure about which color or which leather to choose from, you can request a free swatch from Poly & Bark from their website for free. They ship it to you. I think you need to select what colors or what leather option you’re interested in so you’ll get a piece of it. It comes in an envelope like this and they have a nice little informational brochure inside where they talk about their policies, leather, and all about the good practices that they have.
I think I requested four different colors at the time. Each leather comes with a little back information sheet. This is full-grain pure aniline, which is the one we got here. This is the swatch and this is the actual leather. That’s what I liked, but the other options are also pretty good if you’re not into this color. So, this is brown. It’s semi-aniline. This is not as transparent a finish as the Cognac Tan example that I just showed you. The black is also semi-aniline. There’s also a semi-aniline midnight blue.
If you’re going to fully natural where you can see all the imperfections, your only aniline option will be Cognac Tan here. But the others are semi-aniline which means they add a few pigments into the aniline finish to cover up some of those imperfections. Again, not all. This is done to achieve more color consistency and fewer variations in the colors and shadows and to give a more uniform feature. Not bad, it’s just a personal choice. You’re free to request your samples and make your decision on these fairly good-sized swatch samples here.
Now, let’s look at the box that was included since there were no other instructions in the manual, probably– I don’t know what’s in this box.
Oh! A big old nothing. I guess this was to save space and secure the things inside. Well, I got excited. Maybe there was something in the box, but I’m going to use it for my Amazon returns. It’s a solid box.
I hope you found this video beneficial and valuable when you’re shopping for leather furniture and seating in the future. What I’m trying to say here is that there are a lot of new brands that are coming in the native digital. They’re forming new business models to bring you the best and most authentic look of the leather for a fair price so you don’t have to continue thinking that the most expensive brand is the best leather goods anymore. The digital age is changing this.
There are a lot of small and passionate craftsmen creating new brands with new models and literally delivering you with that passion product leather goods for really, really good prices. Just do your research. We’re going to share all these brands and their beautiful work here as far as we come across them. If you have any brands that you would like for us to review, we’re more than happy to get their products and provide our perspective from a leather tanning standpoint and hopefully, provide you with value when you’re shopping for leather goods.
If you like the video and you would like to see more of it, please don’t forget to subscribe and leave us a comment if you have any questions about it. Thank you. Happy crafting, and happy leather shopping!