The Modus Operandi: Grinding and Polishing the Tripp II Handbag

By Lotuff Leather

A batch of Tripp II handbags is making its way through the design studio, and today, they’re all being ground and painted. Oftentimes, other makers of leather bags will skip this step and go directly to edge painting for the reason that it’s expeditious and initially looks the same. However, edges that simply have paint layered on will peel with time, whereas the methodology we employ leads to a much longer-lasting piece.

Each piece of these Tripp II’s will be ground on a buffing wheel and then painted, which causes errant leather fibers to rise up like the grain on a piece of wood. We then grind those off and repaint, which raises more fibers, repeating this process until nothing irregular arises when painted and all the edges are completely smooth. By this point, the paint has been buffed right into the leather, so its color and strength should never diminish. 

Running a finger over the finished edges as a “blind test” confirms that we’ve been successful in this endeavor; if we feel any given piece could use a little more work, we spot-buff the rough patches and keep testing until it’s finally perfect. Once the components of the Tripp II have all been finalized in this stage, they’ll eventually go on to be stitched together and start to form the bag’s classic, streamlined shape. 

 

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