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Leather cleaning

Leather cleaning is an art and science.  The Green Van Dry Cleaning & Laundry offers professional cleaning for leather, suede and related items.   We will take great care to make them look and feel like new.   Because leather and suede items require special cleaning processes…PLEASE BE AWARE; WE REQUIRE YOUR CONSENT TO CLEAN THESE ITEMS.  

– Leather jackets

– Leather skirts

– Suede jackets

– Uggs boots and slippers

– Sheepskin rugs

– Handbags

The turnaround time for leather and suede items is normally 2-3 weeks.  Please allow for this additional time.  

What To Expect After Cleaning

 Although cleaning technologies for leather and suede are constantly improving, some change of appearance almost always will result from the cleaning process. The following gives you an idea of what to expect:

VARIATIONS AMONG THE GARMENT’S SECTIONS   Leather garments are made from skins taken from various portions of the animal and usually from several different animals. The manufacturer tries to match the skins as uniformly as possible, but even the best matching may still show some variance in texture, weight, and color uniformity. These may be accentuated after cleaning.

LOSS OF COLOR   Be prepared for a slight variance in the depth of color after cleaning. Skins from various parts of the animal may have different colorfastness. Also, some leather dyes may be soluble in dry cleaning fluid, resulting in overall color loss. The cleaner may be able to correct some color loss and variance through refinishing procedures. In some cases, an exact match to the original may not be possible.

LOSS OF OILS   During cleaning, some of the oils used in the tanning process to keep leather supple may be lost. A professional leather cleaner has special additives to restore suppleness, but there still may be some change in the feel of the garment.

SCAR TISSUE AND VEIN MARKS   Tanners often use fillers before dyeing to mask any scar tissue, hair follicles or other imperfections on the leather. Cleaning may remove some of the fillers and cause the defects to reappear.

WRINKLES  Skins taken from certain parts of an animal are naturally wrinkled and have been stretched during manufacturing to achieve a smooth appearance. The agitation of cleaning can relax the leather, accentuating the wrinkles.

TEXTURE AND SHADING CHANGES  Manufacturers sometimes combine a smoother skin with a skin whose texture is more coarse. Cleaning may make this more apparent. Different textures also may vary in how they absorb the fat liquors and additives in the cleaning process, resulting in some areas being darker than others. It is a natural phenomenon that is beyond the control of the cleaner.

SHRINKAGE  Although some shrinkage is likely to occur over time as the skins relax, this may be accentuated in cleaning. As you wear your garment, this snugness should dissipate. If the skins have been overstretched during manufacturing, they may relax permanently.

DAMAGE TO THIN SKINS  Some skins are extremely thin and too fragile for use in apparel. These skins tend to wear exceptionally fast, even with normal usage. The agitation of cleaning will further aggravate the damage of thin skins.

SHADING FROM ADHESIVES  Adhesives used to glue seams, hems, and other areas may not be solvent-resistant. When the glues do not dissolve completely, they may seep through the leather and cause shaded areas.

LEATHER TRIM BLEEDING AND TRANSFER  Leather buttons and piping on fabric items sometimes cause problems by bleeding color onto the adjacent fabric. All attached trim should be able to withstand the care method on the label. If this problem occurs, the item should be returned to the retailer. A dry cleaner may choose not to accept a leather-trimmed garment if tests for colorfastness show that the leather dye may bleed or transfer onto the fabric portion of the garment.

OXIDATION  Exposure to light and atmospheric gases can cause leather dyes to oxidize over time. Protected areas, such as under the collar, will retain more of the original color. This may become more noticeable after cleaning and usually cannot be corrected by the leather cleaner.

Problems With Imitation Leathers and Suedes

Imitation leathers and suedes are produced in a variety of ways and are sometimes difficult to distinguish from the real thing. Some leathers may be coated with vinyl- or urethane-based films, while others may be made to look like suede. These coatings  and imitations may be vulnerable to self-sticking, blistering, puckering or stiffening in dry cleaning.

Click here for our additional terms and conditions.

Here’s an excellent article about leather care from The Art of Manliness.

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6654 Main Street
Wonderland, AK 45202
(513) 555-7856