A Brief History Of Leather

Along with prostitution the tanning of leather is one of the oldest professions on earth and approximately half of all footstools sold today are upholstered in leather. But where does the leather we use come from and what are the origins of this multi million-pound industry?

The origins of leather production can be traced back to the stone-ages. The first leather was created almost by accident by Neanderthal man. As the early hunter gatherers prepared their prey, the first part of the preparation was to skin the animal. They soon discarded the skin and not long after noticed that skins left in moist areas when combined with the foliage from leaves had exhibited certain characteristics. They lasted longer before they began to decay and retained their features longer than other skins. The plant extracts eventually became known as vegetable tanning and is still practised today in a similar form. According to the Bible Simon the Tanner was plying his trade as long as 2000 years ago. 

Leather making advanced slowly over the ages, with more modern refinement of chemicals slowly improving the quality of the leather produced by the early tanners. It wasn’t until the 19th century that more dramatic changes were introduced. In the mid 1850’s, Frederick Knapp presented his ideas on tanning with chromium sulphate. Chromium sulphate with its higher hydrothermal stability soon became a favourite of leather makers across the globe and is today the most popular product used in the tanning process.

Progress in the research and development of organic chemistry utilised in the chemical industry have seen much more rapid advances in the technology used in the leather making process, leading to much more advanced leather products.

Various footstool ranges offer leathers finished to differing quality standards and specifications. Hard wearing leathers are most appropriate in the contract market whereas softer, more vibrant shades are upholstered to form pouffes, cubes or ottomans on offer to the general public.

Our customers agree that a leather footstool is an excellent household investment and will be of great use for many years to come, using some of the finest Italian leather, hand-upholstered onto our locally sourced timber frames, for long lasting comfort. Explore our full range today.

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525 Reviews

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4.9 Rating 120 Reviews

Anonymous

Verified Customer

Lovely footstool received promptly. My young granddaughter has claimed it as her seat so I won't get to rest my feet when she visits?

6 days ago

Katie Rich

Verified Customer

Really helpful service before I ordered. Lovely product - thank you.

8 days ago

Terry Palmer

Verified Customer

Lovely well made item. Actual delivery time a little disappointing but totally satisfied with item and price. Would certainly recommend Footstools Direct regarding craftsmanship etc.

8 days ago

Julian Bishop

Verified Customer

Ordered some legs for a sofa. Good value and quality. Dimensions slightly different from those advertised but we were ok with this as match with existing legs was good

9 days ago

Anonymous

Verified Customer

Love it ... great design, great quality, great service. The fact that one can have samples before ordering is really useful ... I chose lime green (which I would never have chosen without having had a sample before).

1 months ago

Yolande Reynolds

Verified Customer

Love them thanks!

1 months ago

Paul Pickering

Verified Customer

Amazing service from Footstools Direct. I first ordered some free leather swatches which arrived within 7 days. I then ordered a beautiful dark brown leather stool at a very reasonable price, which I am delighted with. It is a real quality, well made item, which arrived within 2 weeks with the free delivery option. I cannot recommend the company nor the product more highly.

1 months ago

Jan Casswell

Verified Customer

My second drum stool. Again excellent quality , beautiful colour. . Quick turnaround from order to delivery Would highly recommend ylthis company

1 months ago

Christine Greenall

Verified Customer

The customer service was excellent, delivery great and the product exactly as we expected. The foot stools are well built, easy to move on the c asters and extremely comfortable.

2 months ago

Liz Popovich

Verified Customer

We honestly could not be happier with our new footstools. We looked at several online suppliers and this was the only company who offered plenty of choice and reasonable prices. The ordering process was easy and the delvery was quick. I highly recommend this company.

2 months ago