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About our shop

©Victoria Wilder 2015

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Frequently Asked Questions

1. What jeans size am I?
2. How do I know my Original jeans will fit?
3. What about my size for other garments?
4. Why are your jeans unlined?
5. What is nappa?
6. Why don't you use nappa for more of your garments, for example, jeans?
7. Isn't nappa the softest, and therefore best, leather available?
8. Can I get samples of the skins you use?
9. Do you use pvc?
10. Do you have a shop?

1. What jeans size am I?

Unfortunately most trouser or jeans manufacturers these days don't size their garments accurately. For example a size 34" trouser or jean will more often than not actually measure closer to 36".

This is a marketing tactic known as 'vanity sizing', and is used to entice the purchaser by leading them to believe they are a size smaller than they really are. This practice has spread across the board, and on women's sizes it has necessitated a size 6 being created, when an 8 used to be the smallest UK size.

As you can imagine this has caused us many problems, as our sizing for our jeans is based on accurate waist measurements. Please disregard the size that you normally wear as we will ascertain your size.

As 90% of people are now a non-standard size, we make the jeans to measure at no extra cost.

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2. How do I know my Original jeans will fit?

With every order we require six measurements, which will enable us to decide whether or not you are a standard size. If you provide us with these six simple measurements, it will ensure a perfect fit. However, DO NOT try to measure yourself or take measurements from an existing pair of jeans.
 
Our sizing is correct so a size 32" will measure 32" around the waist (at 1" below navel). Please recheck this measurement - you may be surprised!

These are the measurements we require, with some guidance on how to measure up:


1) Thigh: this should be taken at the widest point (approx 2" from crotch). Ensure that your body is not twisted for any measurement and keep your feet equally flat with both heels on the floor.

2) Front rise: this is the distance between the crotch and the top of the centre front of the waistband. This should be taken from the crotch (at the point of the perineum) to 1" below navel (belly button).

It is essential for you to initially take the front rise measurement to 1" below the navel, even if you require a lower cut rise. In this case, ALSO give the shorter measurement.

3) Back rise: the distance between the crotch and the top of the centre back of the waistband. This should be taken from the SAME crotch point (it may help to mark this point when you do the front rise) to the small of the back, following the curve of the buttocks, not going between them!

4) Waist: run the tape measure around the waist going through the small of the back (where the Back Rise was measured to) and dropping at the front to 1" below the navel.

5) Hip: This is the measurement around the widest point of your posterior, not your actual hip bone. Run the tape measure around your buttocks in a horizontal line from the base of the fly, just above the pelvic bone.

6
) Inside Leg: Take the tape measure and measure from the crotch (as per 2), down the inside leg to 1/2" below the ankle bone for a narrow or straight cut leg, or to 1/2" from the floor for a boot cut.

Please bear in mind that the final measurements we agree on will be exactly what your jeans will measure. If you want a looser fit, please measure your thigh and hip and adjust accordingly, remembering that these areas will give a little with wear. Note that the waistband will not.

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3. What about my size for other garments??

Because of the above mentioned confusion with garment sizing, we will, with every order, send an email asking for certain simple measurements to be supplied. This will help ensure the garments will fit.

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4. Why are your jeans unlined?

There are several reasons why unlined jeans are preferable to lined. Firstly a better fit can be achieved, and having leather next to your skin is not only more tactile, but more hygenic too, as it allows your skin to breath. Lining leather jeans creates a barrier which will cause you to sweat, making them uncomfortable and unhealthy.

The primary reason that other manufacturers line their jeans, is to help prevent them from stretching. All leather will stretch a give to a certain extent, some more than others (lambskin in particular, is prone to stretching). The Brazilian, Italian and Japanese cowhide that we use will stretch a little, but once they have moulded to your shape they will not continue to stretch.

When they are new they should fit quite snugly, and we usually advise for them to be worn around the house on the first couple of occasions. After a couple of wears they will mould to your shape and will be a comfortable fit.

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5. What is nappa?

We have seen many websites misleading customers by advertising their garments as being made from 'nappa' leather, when it is clear that they are not.

Quite simply, nappa is leather that comes from either sheep / lamb or goat / kid. It is NOT cowhide (see question 3 below). As such, it tends to be softer than many cowhides, which makes it quite desirable. Consequently, the term is frequently misused in order to make low quality garments seem to be of a higher quality.

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6. Why don't you use nappa for more of your garments, for example, jeans?

While nappa is very soft and is suitable for certain garments, there are three drawbacks to it.

Firstly, it stretches more than cowhide. This means that it must be lined to prevent this from happening. It is therefore perfect for our Clever Leather Skirt and Jacket, which are both lined garments. However, as mentioned in our jeans section above, lining on trousers/jeans prevents them from fitting as well as they could, as well as being unhygienic in not allowing the wearer's skin to breathe.

Secondly, it is not as hard wearing as cowhide. The nature of jeans is that they are likely to take a certain amount of punishment, and nappa certainly doesn't lend itself to this.

Finally, as nappa comes from either a sheep or goat, the skin is not particularly large. This means that it is unsuitable for providing large pieces of skin for items such as jeans. Consequently, any jeans that are made from nappa tend to have ugly looking seams at, or just above, the knees.

Similarly, fitted coats made from nappa tend to be made up of a large number of panels, which tends to ruin the cut and look of the entire garment.
This is a compromise that we are not prepared to accept. We take the view that if the look of a garment is compromised by using a particular skin, then that is the wrong skin to use for that particular garment.

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7. Isn't nappa the softest, and therefore best, leather available?

No skin can be described as the 'best available'. It all depends on what that skin is to be used for, and what type of usage it will receive.

Nappa is very soft, and the lamb nappa we use for our Clever Leather Skirt and Jacket is particularly touchable. However, as explained above, it is not suitable for fitted coats or jeans, for reasons of size and the degree to which it stretches.
The softest skin we use is Japanese cowhide, a by product of Kobe beef, and simply the most tactile cowhide produced. This is a very expensive skin that has great fluidity about it, and, as it is a cowhide, can be used to great effect for fitted coats (see Superior Coat), as well as many other garments.

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8. Can I get samples of the skins you use?

Yes. Click here, complete the form and we will post them to you.

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9. Do you use pvc?

No, all our clothes are made from genuine cowhide, horsehide or lamb nappa.

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10. Do you have a shop?

We do not have a showroom, but we do have a studio based in Hastings. Appointments need to be made in advance before you visit. Alternatively, we exhibit at LAM (London Alternative Market) on 1st Sunday of every month, consultations and fittings can be done there. Please contact us on 07971 307607 or email

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