Requesting Leather Samples
I process a lot of requests for leather samples daily, and do that by sending in a fax to the various makers listing the leathers chosen. A few things to know when you order samples:
* They are generally sent at no charge to you, and for the most part you do not have to return them.
* Samples are mostly made from scrap leather that is 'cut-away' during the production of a piece. What you are getting in the sample is the cast off leather, so its very important to realize that the sample you have may have a very poor texture (Belly or Neck area leather), or serious flaws on it. You will not get these flaws on your ordered piece. For example, today a customer showed me a sample of Capri Harness that was mailed to her (Hancock and Moore) and it was a horrid piece of leather, nowhere near what she actually would get. It was so bad that I gave her one of my dealer samples to replace it, and tossed her old one in the trash. Don't rely on the sample to be accurate.
* A few years ago most folks requested two or three samples, now its twelve to fifteen per request. And because of that, the manufacturers have responded by reducing the sample sizes to the miserable little 1.5" x 2.5" rectangles instead of the larger 4" x 6" dealer handle swatches. Its just too costly to send out that many large swatches per request. In my opinion, you can't get enough leather from the small samples to make a good buying decision, but I can appreciate why the suppliers had to go this route, its a tough economy. However if you need just one or two samples, request DEALER SIZE SWATCHES and you'll get the larger sets. If you want larger sets on a dozen samples, then that's do-able as well but we would have to get a price for the charge to do so - they won't be free.
Straight answers from thirty years in the business.
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