Finish Strong – A Quick Guide to Leather Finishes

There are lots of ways you can choose to seal the deal on your leather project, but it can be tough figuring out the best one for you. Sometimes you need to make sure your project won’t get scratched, while other times call for flexibility to come to the forefront. We’re going to give you the highs and lows of some of the most common ways to seal a leather project. 


Keep in mind that while things like antique paste can be considered finishes, this article focuses on products that will seal your work! 



These finishes aren’t true finishes, but we included them here because of their regular association. Resists work well as intermediary coats when coloring leather. They work especially well with antique stains. Like the name suggests, it will resist color put on top of it, meaning stains that are applied won’t penetrate the leather as well. However, no amount of resist will completely prevent color from adhering to a project. 

Polyurethane Based Finishes 

Polyurethane finishes are a fine choice for those who put protection above all else. While we don’t carry finishes made from polyurethane, they are popular among those that require hardness and stiffness for their projects. These finishes can vary in thickness and therefore, vary in hardness, but they are the best bet for ensuring that your projects will weather the storm of rough use. 

Wax and Shine Finishes 


Wax finishes are a great solution for those who want a high-shine finish that will seal their color work and retain pliability. These wax finishes won’t protect your work from rough/heavy handling like polyurethane, but they will give your work a luster you can count on and protect your paint/dye. Spray finishes like Master’s Quick Shine are consistent and efficient ways to cover your work. Standard waxes take a bit more elbow grease, but can finish off your work with different degrees of luster that are more easily manipulated. 

Acrylic Finishes


Acrylic finishes are an SLC favorite. They offer immense protection with a moderate amount of stiffness. In a venn diagram of finishes, acrylic finishes would likely be in the middle. They are buildable (in thin layers) and won’t stiffen projects a great deal. They are somewhat resistant to abrasions and, of course, they’ll seal your color work wonderfully. 

No matter which finish you choose, you want to make sure that you’re getting the best deal! Be sure to check out the finishes section of our website. If you have more questions about finishes, use the Inbox button above or visit the Ask the Pros page on our website where Kevin or one of our awesome team members will send you email with an answer just for you. Until next time! 

Quick Announcement!

Hey folks! We just wanted to let you all know that we will be closed Tuesday, December 25th and Tuesday, January 1st! 

We will operate as usual around that time though. 

Thanks for making 2018 an excellent year! May 2019 be even greater. 

An Exciting Announcement!

As you know, we love working together with our longstanding Hermann Oak and Kevin has a message regarding our latest collaborative effort in this open letter shared on Kevin’s Storytime!

When great companies work together, great things happen!!! And they happen for their customers as well. Those things are known as win-win situations, and the main beneficiary of these win-win situations is always the customer. The benefit to the companies comes later as it flows from happy customers to innovative companies.  It’s well known that “Customer First” has been the long-standing policy of great companies like Springfield Leather Company and Hermann Oak Leather.

Having said that, leathercrafters across the board have long-desired a HERMANN OAK DOUBLE SHOULDER.  And SLC and Hermann Oak feel that this would be a tremendous addition to the leather industry in this country for manufacturers, hobbyists, belt makers and all sorts of other leathercrafters.  But confronting the production problems that came along with creating this seemingly simple cut of leather were far more daunting than the average person would realize. It would require a small book to explain them!  

So…recently, Hermann Oak and SLC have teamed up, and worked together extensively to try to solve these difficulties.  And, (amazingly enough) we feel that between us, we think we have it whipped!!! Another benefit of this production has been realized. Not only will we have a Hermann Oak double shoulder, but we’ll also have a double culatta!!!  Initial research has shown that using double shoulders and double culattas can result in AS MUCH AS 40% YIELD INCREASES FOR VARIOUS END USERS!

With all of these things having been said, production samples are in hand!  Testing is in place. Grading and pricing are being discussed. We’re very excited to have a part in bringing this wonderful new product to our customers! And certainly want to express our gratitude and thanks to Hermann Oak for being willing to not only change the way that they think, but for taking the time and effort required to make this colossal project a success.