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Thread: Re-dye of an old aniline leather sofa

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Alexandria VA
    Posts
    12,320

    Default Re-dye of an old aniline leather sofa

    I have a pair of 2670 Leathercraft sofas in my home, one of which is now 17 years old. The Sun has had its way with the one closest to the windows over time, even through I have 3M solar film on the upper windows and the patio doors are Anderson Super Low E designed for Florida homes. As you can see from this photo, there is a lot of light coming in the room:

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    The first step was to cut the leather "flag" off under the seat cushion and send that off to Pam at Leather Solutions International so she could mix me up a bottle of aniline dye (8 oz) custom to the leather. I also needed her basic leather cleaning kit which I have at the store.

    http://www.leathersi.com/Aniline-Col...hers_p_24.html

    Next was to call Leathercraft and order three new seat cores as these had lost their resiliency. Unlike Hancock and Moore, who furnish FREE new seat cores upon request to the original customer, these three seat cores with shipping were $ 380. (Yet one more reason to buy H&M !). The back on the 2670 is a tight back unit, otherwise I would have replaced them as well. Frame and springs are solid.

    So here's what the sofa looks like before I start:

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    I go over the entire piece with leather cleaner from Leather Solutions Int'l so we have a clean surface to work with, then I put down a painter's drop cloth to catch any errant drops of the water-based dye Pam mixed up. Once that was done I applied one coat with a microfiber towel (be sure to use latex gloves unless you want your fingers stained for several days). After the first coat I used a hair dryer to go over it all to speed drying, then two more coats went on for a total of three. More hair dryer, then a liberal coat of Leather Softener which I left on for two hours. Finally when that was dry I used the topcoat Protectant to complete the job. Here's the result (photos taken before fully dry)

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    Looks MUCH better! I would say while not perfect, its a 90% improvement -which is about as good as you can expect I will used these two sofas probably another 5 years or so, then replace them with a pair of H&M units. This is not difficult to do - so if you have faded aniline leather don't toss the piece - rejuvenate it! With a steady hand and a little patience - you can do it.
    Duane Collie
    Straight answers from thirty years in the business.
    My Private Messages are Disabled - Please ask questions here in the forum
    I ask that you do NOT call my store with general furniture questions, that is what the forum is for

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Columbus, OH
    Posts
    289

    Default Re: Re-dye of an old aniline leather sofa

    That is a pretty big difference! Nice job. Is there any worry about the dye coming off, like onto clothes or if you sweat? Or is it one of things like once it is dry it is very set?

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Jan 2018
    Posts
    144

    Default Re: Re-dye of an old aniline leather sofa

    What I find most interesting is that I really liked the faded color, too. If you could have evenly faded the back cushions, it would have just looked like more of a saddle brown color. Nice job.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    Alexandria VA
    Posts
    12,320

    Default Re: Re-dye of an old aniline leather sofa

    All leather is either dyed or painted, using the same water-based dye as in this repair sequence. This doesn't come off once set, however you will get a slight amount of color on the rag when you put the conditioner on it for the first time after the re-dye.
    Duane Collie
    Straight answers from thirty years in the business.
    My Private Messages are Disabled - Please ask questions here in the forum
    I ask that you do NOT call my store with general furniture questions, that is what the forum is for

  5. #5
    Join Date
    May 2010
    Location
    Columbus, OH
    Posts
    289

    Default Re: Re-dye of an old aniline leather sofa

    Got it, thanks Duane.

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