An Ancient Tradition of Artistry and Excellence
We are honored to partner with some of the top artisans in Turkey, where the history of sheepskin and leather is as old as civilization itself.
n our ongoing quest to bring you the finest sheepskin available, we partner with highly skilled artisans both here in the US and around the world. Our trusted Turkish partners in Istanbul share our passion for craftsmanship and integrity, blending old-world tradition and modern innovation in every piece of outerwear they create.
“In Turkey we’ve been crafting leather and sheepskin under the Mediterranean sun for over a thousand years, from the days of Constantinople,” says Emre, a Turkish-born leather expert and one of our trusted global partners.
“The artistry starts with knowing which hides to use,” Emre says, and that’s something that simply can’t be done via phone or online. His experts travel the world over to select the finest pieces, one by one. Once the material has been sent to Turkey, dozens of different artisans will work together in concert to craft a single coat by hand, each one lending their unique skill set.
“In the fabric business, it’s all about scale; whoever has the machinery can do it,” says Emre. “But with leather, every single hide needs to be inspected, and there’s no machine that can perform that task. Each one is hand-selected, cut, and sewn. You simply can’t automate it. There are no shortcuts.”
“In Turkey we’ve been crafting leather and sheepskin under the Mediterranean sun for over a thousand years, from the days of Constantinople.”
Working with leather is truly an art form. Each hide has its own unique characteristics and requires highly specialized skill to take it from raw material to an elegant, finished design.
“There are really no schools for it,” says Emre. “It’s all learned through apprenticeship. There’s a large body of knowledge that’s been retained here in Turkey, because enough masters and apprentices have passed it down throughout the generations.”
Istanbul is a melting pot of diverse cultures and has been since the Silk Road era. For many artisans here, leather working goes far beyond simply earning a livelihood. In Emre’s words, “Leather here is a status symbol. It’s in our blood. We’re extremely proud of the work we do.”
“Leather here is a status symbol. It’s in our blood. We’re extremely proud of the work we do.”
In today’s increasingly automated, disposable world, people can feel proud to wear carefully crafted heritage coats, says Emre. “A well-made sheepskin coat is so different from, say, a puffer jacket—an oil by-product that’s been cut and sewn in an assembly line and then becomes one in thousands of exact replicas. A sheepskin coat starts with natural materials and evolves organically as many artisans shape it to perfection. It takes a lot of effort, passion, and accumulated experience to create a garment like this. It’s not a disposable type of item.”
That feeling is something you’ll appreciate for years to come, he adds.
“When you wear a sheepskin jacket that’s been made by a true master, you can feel the difference. You just feel at home. And if you take good care of it, you can enjoy it forever.”
We travel the world to bring you the highest-quality leather and shearling available—but sometimes, the best-kept secrets are close to home.
An Emphasis on Quality Over Quantity
Have a look inside this Chinese sheepskin slipper-making facility, where highly skilled artisans take great pride in their work.
Superior Artistry and Strong Ethics
Many meticulous, hands-on steps are required in the crafting of an heirloom-quality coat. Each one requires artistry and skill.
9 Steps to Crafting an Overland Coat
Handcrafting superb outerwear isn’t simply a day’s work for our international makers, or those here at home. It’s their passion.
Global Craftsmanship, American Style
A World of Expertise
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