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The Value of Vintage: The Allure and Investment of Classic Leather Pieces

Vintage leather refers to leather goods that are at least 20 years old and possess qualities that reflect the passage of time. It’s characterised by its aged appearance and unique patina, which develops over time through natural wear and exposure to environmental elements.

Vintage leather items can create a sense of nostalgia and romance as they often carry the stories of their previous owners leaving traces of their past lives in the form of marks, scuffing and stretching depending on how it’s been used.



Interestingly, vintage leather is often sought after due to it being a more sustainable option compared to purchasing new or faux leather products. By giving new life to pre-owned items, individuals can reduce their environmental impact and support a circular economy.

In addition to their aesthetic appeal, vintage leather items can also be valuable investments. Classic pieces from iconic brands or renowned designers can appreciate in value over time, especially if they are well-preserved and in good condition. Vintage leather items have a track record of holding their value, making them an attractive asset for collectors and investors alike.



One example of a vintage leather product that has appreciated in value over time is the Hermès Birkin bag. The Hermès Birkin bag, originally designed in 1984 and named after actress and singer Jane Birkin, has become one of the most iconic and sought-after luxury handbags in the world. Crafted from high-quality leather and featuring impeccable craftsmanship, each Birkin bag is handmade by skilled artisans and can take several days to complete.

However, did you know that Peter Nitz, a bespoke luxury bag and leather goods producer, warns potential buyers that not all designer bags hold an investment value. The mass-produced bags displayed at department stores and fashion outlets do not appreciate in value and can, at most, retain their original price or a little less. They lack uniqueness and exclusivity, and people who are looking for a bag to serve as an investment will not see their money grow with these types of bags. Thus, it’s crucial for buyers to be knowledgeable about the market and understand which bags have a higher investment value.

Due to these inherent qualities that vintage leather carries, new leather with a vintage feel can be used when creating new items, adding a ‘ready-made’ nostalgia, warmth, and sense of craftsmanship.



For example, this Vintage Chevrolet restoration project completed in 2021 uses Crest’s Saloon Whiskey, and has a vintage style distressed pattern, and a beautifully soft hand-feel. Alternatively, The Bell Bullitt motorcycle helmet created by Larson Upholstery uses Crest’s Matera Tobacco to enhance feelings of individuality and craftsmanship.

While beautifully crafted in their own right, both of these case studies benefit from using a leather product which captures the intrinsic characteristics of vintage leather and the qualities it lends to a project.

Click here to view additional case studies where Crest Leather, vintage or otherwise, has been used to enhance the projects quality aesthetic.