What is Epi Leather? Luxurious & Long Lasting
Epi leather is a superb brown-grained leather that comes in two batches. The surface layer is lighter, while the deeper layer has a deeper hue. Epi leather is exceptionally durable, supple, and scratch-resistant. Its texture resembles wheat fields moving in the sun.
It’s no secret that Louis Vuitton is famous and shines with its typical monogram pattern that we all know and love. One “premium weapon,” however, that is helping Louis Vuitton to make a real breakthrough is Epi, the legendary leather line.
Brief History of Epi Leather
Louis Vuitton has enjoyed great success with Epi Leather for more than a century. The material was introduced in 1985, is inspired by the first leather Louis Vuitton used in trunks during the 1920s. After Monogram and Damier canvases, Epi leather is probably the most recognizable Vuitton material among LV fans, although it is often overlooked by handbag collectors.
Despite their rigidity, Epi bags possess a natural stretch that, combined with their structured quality, create an intriguing overall look and feel. An LV logo is discreetly embedded in the bottom right corner of each Epi leather piece.
Basic Feature of Epi Leather
Using Epi’s three-dimensional wave pattern, the leather is dyed, painted with a matching topcoat, and then painted with dye again. Epi leather is characterized by a horizontal grain; if you examine closely, you can discern the subtle color variations between the rises and grooves.
The special process gives the leather a vibrant and bright appearance and makes it extremely waterproof and wear-resistant. Epi bags are popular on the resale market because they require a minimum of care and stay in good condition for a long time.
Many luxury goods use leather because it has characteristics that are useful for several designs. Epi leather has great strength, durability, and style.
Epi Leather’s Origin?
A concept for producing Epi leather first came to Vuitton’s mind in 1920, when Gaston-Louis Vuitton proposed printing a design onto a more resistant fabric. This type of leather comes in two batches, with the surface layer lighter than the deeper layer and the surface layer is darker than the deeper layer. Epi leather is exceptionally durable, supple, and scratch-resistant. Its texture is meant to resemble wheat fields moving in the sun.
The first Epi leather product was introduced in 1926. With a taste for the custom-made and a love for fulfilling special orders, Louis Vuitton developed the Maharaja de Baroda tea case. Since then, leather has been consistently used because of one of its most fascinating properties: its ability to absorb the most vivid colors.
Louis Vuitton’s philosophy of creation is still the same today: “Concentration and precision are simultaneous during the process of creating – carefully cutting out, browning the selected part, then using beeswax to retract the thread a bit. Some battles can be decided by a very thin margin, just a few millimeters.
Available Colors of Epi leather
Two groups of epi leather produced by Louis Vuitton, which were introduced and developed differently over time.
The leather is textured with ripples and is stamped with a classic fabric pattern. The material is designed to meet the increasing needs of people in work and travel situations that require durable, weatherproof material.
Colors originally available were:
- Castillian Red
- Toledo Blue
- Borneo Green
- Kouril Black
- Winnepeg Sable
- Kenyan Fawn
Wholesalers and retailers offer Epi leather products in a variety of colors. Leather craftsmen looking to produce a quality piece should consider using this type of leather.
Process of making Epi Leather?
It is a pressed leather style. It is created by stamping a pattern onto dyed and water-resistant vegetable-tanned leather. There is a horizontal, textured pattern that gives it its distinctive appearance. Louis Vuitton bags are usually made from Epi leather.
The history of this leather is rich, it has a dedicated following, and it is perfect for any kind of leather product.
4 Step Processes Involved In The Production Of Epi Leather
The production of epi leather generally involves tanning, dyeing, and finishing.
Epi leather is prepared for use. During this process, all steps in leather tanning are performed until the leather is ready for commercial use. In general, hides made from calfskin are used. Quality leather is often produced using a natural, vegetable tanning process.
To introduce one of several vibrant colors, the leather is dyed after tanning. It’s not uncommon for brands to have signature colors. They may vary from year to year or season to season. Since Louis Vuitton introduced Epi leather a few years ago, many variants of color have been introduced. When purchasing from wholesalers, EPI leather is usually available in at least 16 different colors.
Once the leather has been dyed, it is run through machines with metal plates. Reverse etching of the Epi pattern is used on the plates. Thus, when a pattern is passed into a material, it will look exactly like that. You can think of it the same way as the dies used to make coins, they’re oriented backward to ensure a coin surface with a proper angle when you strike them.
The Epi pattern is horizontal and textured. On the plates, it appears horizontally. By applying a great deal of force, the plates are then permanently pressed into the leather, leaving permanent impressions.
Here you will find more of the great features of Epi leather. The surface is usually finished with a clear, protective coating. In addition to providing a scratch- and a water-resistant surface, the finish also protects the leather beneath it.
Under the top layer, there can be other finishes or layers. Their purpose could be to add a soft shine to a visual effect. Or, it can be of a certain color or translucency that complements the color of the leather underneath.
4 General Characteristics of Epi Leather
The protective finish is strong, making it possible to use handbags and wallets daily without abrasion. Epi leather is usually not chipped or cracked. Use and flexing can cause it to soften over time, which can be a positive trait.
The surface of a protective finish is less likely to accumulate dust and dirt. Therefore, it requires less cleaning.
A water-repellent finish makes it possible to maintain a clean top surface. Epi leather is rarely not harmed by splashes or rain.
- Scratch Resistant
By contrast, the textured pattern as a whole resists more obvious scratches, while still masking minor scratches. Protective finishes provide a good barrier here, which means the surface looks good most of the time.
Pros of Epi Leather
It’s not just the design of Epi leather that attracts fashionistas; it’s also the way it’s made (colored with plant extracts and finished with a unique paint technique).
While the design is certainly appealing, Epi leather’s waterproofing and scratch-resistance abilities make this bag stand out from others (even though it should be kept away from sharp objects).
There are many colors available in this leather line. In addition, this model is highly durable, soft, and finely grained.
Leather produced by Epi is from calf shin (before 3-years-old young cows), so the leather will be beautiful and will have no scarring.
8 Uses of Epi leather
LV’s leather goods are made from Epi leather. Handbags, wallets, cardholders, document cases, key chains, luggage, backpacks, and notebook cases are generally included in this category. The following Louis Vuitton handbag styles are some of the most popular:
- Petite Noe
The following types of leather goods would work well with Epi leather if you want to craft leather goods from it. Besides making briefcases, phone cases, portfolios, and other small items, one could also make small accessories.
Care and maintenance of EPI leather
The proper cleaning and maintenance of leather products are essential. The fibers in them are natural, so they will hold up well if kept clean and restored/conditioned when needed.
It is always a good idea to test a leather cleaner or finish on a small area before applying it to ensure that it will not react badly with the leather. As soon as you’re sure it’s safe, you can clean it.
The Best Way to Store Epi Leather
This type of material should be kept cool, dry, and free from dust. Low-humidity environments are generally ideal for leather products. As well as allowing the leather to “breathe”, airflow improves the look and feel of leather.
Humidity can rise and leather can deteriorate. Mold can also grow in a sealed environment. When there is too little humidity in an environment, the leather can dry out and crack, causing its fibers to weaken.
What does Epi leather mean?
Epi leather is one of Louis Vuitton’s main leathers. This is an embossed, pigmented smooth leather that bears an impression of boarded grain. The pigmentation of the leather makes it weather-resistant.
Is Louis Vuitton made of real leather?
Absolutely, leather is the main material used to make Monogram Louis Vuitton handbags. An exclusive method of tanning cow skin, known as vegetable tanning, is then applied. Over time, this method has been perfected to deliver the finest leather.
What does Epi leather feel like?
What does Epi Leather Feel Like? Epi leather feels soft and textured to the touch. In general, it is flexible and smooth. The leather is durable and sturdy, yet flexible and water-resistant thanks to its texture and finish.