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about.


Each Maine Leather Co. item is hand stitched in our studio in Portland, Maine. Every piece is touched by hand, lovingly crafted to your exacting standards. We love every item we create and we know you will too.

To create each piece, we cut the leather by hand, make each hole with hand tools, and stitch entirely without the use of machines. Our solid brass hardware is sourced locally in New England and fastened with hand tools. The design process typically begins with the leather itself rather than pencil and paper.

Our leather is hand selected from a local Maine tannery where they process chrome tanned American steer and bison hides. We choose to use their leather not only because they are a high quality local source, but also because chrome tanning creates a leather that can withstand the elements. Our products are meant to be life companions, to be carried in all seasons. Chrome tanned leather is stain and water resistant, and can withstand extreme temperatures without cracking or rapidly aging. 

 

Belle Hilmer, Founder

When I started working with leather, I was genuinely surprised at how naturally the process came to me. It drew me in with such force, rewarded me with physical evidence of my accomplishments, and offered a connection to my creative ancestors that I hadn’t previously felt. It has been thrilling to learn through experimentation, to become an entrepreneur and to wake up and create each day.

One day at a time, I allow my love for Maine to inspire my work. My daily intention is to make simple, quality products in an honest and genuine way.  Everything at MLCo. is made to order. This way, you will carry a sense of belonging with each piece, knowing this item was made individually, for you.

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Our identities are often reflected in our fashion choices. This does not mean our individuality needs to come at the expense of vulnerable garment workers and our environment. At Maine Leather Co. we are committed to sourcing our materials regionally and continuing to make everything in-house.