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Tanning Process


The entire leather-making process can range from a few weeks to several months, depending on the type of leather, the desired quality, and the complexity of the finishing steps. High-quality leather often requires more time and attention to detail. Although modern leather production may incorporate more efficient methods and technologies to reduce processing times, the fundamental stages remain essential to create durable and beautiful leather products.


The process of making leather involves several stages and can take several weeks to complete. 

Below is a general overview of the leather making process at Nakara:

The majority of our bovine hides are sourced from abattoirs all over Namibia, however a substantial part is also brought to our warehouse by dealers and local farmers. Cattle hides and game skins are byproducts of the meat industry and find little other industrial use. The delivered raw material undergoes strict quality control!
After the animal hide or skin is obtained from one of our suppliers, it goes through a process called “curing”. This involves removing hair, flesh, and fat from the hide, and soaking it in water to rehydrate and clean it.
Tanning is the most critical stage in leather making, and it can take several days to weeks to complete. Tanning involves treating the hide with tanning agents to stabilize the proteins and prevent the material from decomposing. There are two main types of tanning: vegetable tanning (using plant-based materials) and chrome tanning (using chromium salts). Each method has its own advantages and characteristics.
Post Tanning Processes
After tanning the leather may undergo various additional processes, such as dyeing, fatliquoring (adding oils or fats for softness), and drying. These processes can take additional days to weeks, depending on the specific treatments and desired outcomes.
Once the leather is fully processed, it undergoes finishing operations, which can include buffing, embossing, and coating to achieve the desired texture, appearance, and durability. This step can take a few days to complete.
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