What is Leather Hand & Thickness?
Why Do You Love Leather?
Leather is a sensory experience, and seeing it visually is different than holding it in your hands. When we write our product descriptions for each leather or collection, we try to be as transparent as possible, describing the leather feel, texture, thickness and hand, so you know what to expect.
Some people are attracted to certain leathers based on the thickness or flexibility of the texture. Whether you prefer a floppy, lightweight notebook cover or a sturdy, thick cover, these are important descriptors to determine what leather is right for you.
Always make sure to watch the leather profile videos on Youtube and do your due diligence so you know what you are ordering! Our brown leather comparison videos are a great way to understand the differences between each collection.
What is Leather Hand?
Per our Chic Sparrow Common Terms, “Leather Hand” is a term used to describe the texture/feel of leather (ex. softness or firmness). The terms flexible, malleable and pliable also refer to the leather hand. Check out the photo of the Waypoint leather below. The way this leather easily bends and flexes with defined folds indicates a softer hand leather.
- Soft Hand: Leather that is extremely flexible and pliable. It does not tend to hold its shape. It is usually floppy and will hug your inserts.
- Medium Hand: Leather is slightly stiff and less rigid. Tends to hold its shape. This leather is usually thick, not floppy, but not super stiff.
- Firm Hand: Leather with a hard and rigid feel. Stiff leather is not easily bent or folded. It will retain its original shape and may need spine training to bend around the inserts.
Thickness does not necessarily equal hand. For instance, both Maverick (2.9mm - 3.2mm) and Crème (3.2mm - 3.6mm) have a similar leather thickness, but the hand is quite different! Maverick is quite stiff in the beginning, compared to Crème which is more malleable. Similarly, both Austen (1.7mm - 2.0mm) and Waypoint (1.8mm - 2.3mm) are in the same thickness range, but Austen leathers are much more stiff than the flexible Waypoint leathers.
Also, know that every area of the cow hide thickness is different. There can be thicker and thinner areas even in the same hide! Just like a fingerprint or a flower, leather is an organic material, so there can be unique areas even within the same piece.
Breaking In Leather
With time and use, all leather relaxes and molds around what is inside of it, and the same goes for Chic Sparrow travelers notebook covers.
Leathers that have a soft to medium hand will not need to be broken-in, and will hug your inserts right away. If you like a squared off look to the spine of your TN, a soft to medium hand leather would be perfect. Alternatively, stiff, firm hand leathers will take longer to break-in, and may have a rounded spine until the leather softens.
Please Note: We do not recommend distressing or rolling Chic Sparrow notebook covers to make them break in. This may invalidate your warranty because of putting excessive stress on the leather (outside of everyday use).
How Will You Use Your Notebook Cover?
Make sure to account for how you prefer to use your notebook cover. If you prefer a firm writing surface, you’ll want to lean towards leathers that have a medium to firm hand. If you like a lightweight cover that won’t add bulk to your journal, you may want to go with a soft to medium hand leather.
Chic Sparrow Collections & Leather Hand
With that said, please make sure to read all of the product descriptions carefully, and watch our leather profile videos for more information. Words like floppy, flexible, sturdy and firm can help describe the leather hand. As always, our friendly marketing and customer service teams are happy to help you determine what leather is right for you.