Thursday, August 31, 2017

Leather Care Project: Restoration with Stitching Challenge

We are so glad to have joined the cross-stitching bandwagon back in its heyday, but we wouldn't dare announce the exact year.  Those were the days when every project was a true test of patience and perseverance...and it was, in a way therapeutic.
Now we leveled up in stitching, as it becomes an important component of some of our restoration efforts at Leather Care Project.  Stitching becomes more tedious with bags, because we have to deal with hard-to-reach areas (like corners and interior lining).  If we are to open existing stitches to make room for repairs, we need to assess the most optimal section to cut - all these steps are being performed with utmost care; with the primary goal of maintaining or reinforcing the sturdiness of the bag, while being especially mindful of its overall aesthetic value (or appearance). 
Here are two of our recent projects that mandated high quality hand stitches. 
1.  Gucci small denim bag with soft leather trim and handle - this is a 14-year old bag, and it has been a constant favorite of a client among her extensive collection of designer bags.  This is her usual out-to-lunch bag. It must be sturdy enough to hold a phone, coins and bills, keys, power bank, and some beauty must-haves. 

2.  Coach fabric bag with patent leather trim and straps - the 'before' photo says it all.  All strap edges were badly damaged due to a combination of stress (heavy load) and humidity (from storage).  Good thing our client did not give up on this bag, and brought it to us for repair.  It could have ended up in the trash bin.  We do not have to be hardcore environmentalists to at least attempt in helping our clients save their bags (from destruction).  Now we are looking forward to her OOTD photos with this arm candy.  The repair process that we followed is a green one - we did not use any electrical machine to fix the bag, it was all manual process. 

For more information, please visit (and share) our Facebook and Instagram accounts @leathercareproject.  Thank you. 

Attention: COACH Lovers

Output of our recent Coach cleaning/restoration effort
Coach produces lovely handbags, which never seem to go out of style, regardless of season and location. Through the years, Coach has put together an appealing collection of handbags, season after season, never forgetful of making utilitarian and chic exist on the same plane.  Let's also not forget to emphasize the brand's huge popularity in the Asian market.  

Since Coach bags are very useful, they are no stranger to a gamut of stains and color transfer - especially the fabric ones.  Followers of the Leather Care Project are more than convinced that there is a better way of cleaning their favorite Coach fabric bags.  Forget about dumping it all in the washing machine; a step that compromises not only the leather trims and hardware, but also impacts the overall appearance and quality of Coach bags. We are pleased to share some of the 'before versus after' pieces that we did recently.

Before:  Common issues - dirt, molds, and heavy stains (usually ink, color transfer); other issues - loose stitches, damaged leather edges

Leather Care Project Process
1.  Clean and disinfect
2.  Condition leather parts
3.  Fix loose stitches and leather edges
4.  Apply water and stain protector

After:  Coach bags that are clean as new

Extra:  Completed repair of loose leather stitches, intense leather conditioning of the handle

For more information, please visit (and share) our Facebook and Instagram accounts @leathercareproject.  Thank you. 


Monday, August 14, 2017

Hello Kitty Run Link Love Together Manila 2017

Hi there, Hello Kitty fans! Are you ready to spread love and have fun with Hello Kitty? After visiting Japan, Taiwan, Singapore, Malaysia, Vietnam, Thailand and Indonesia, Hello Kitty is (finally) coming to the Philippines through the first ever Hello Kitty Run Manila 2017 happening on October 21, 2017! Let’s have fun with family and friends with the fun run’s theme, “Link Love Together!

Our beloved Hello Kitty will inspire love and share happiness with everyone in the 5km fun run at the SM By the Bay, SM MOA Complex. To show her excitement to meet all participants, she prepared an exclusive edition Hello Kitty Run Manila 2017 race kit consisting of themed race tee and race bib, with lots of special gifts from sponsors, all in a very cute exclusive Hello Kitty Run Manila 2017 drawstring bag! Everyone who will cross the finish line will also receive a very cute special edition Hello Kitty Run finisher’s medal for their effort!

Hello Kitty herself will meet-and-greet friends and fans at a special stage program during the event! There will also be lots of activities and booths where you can get exclusive and limited edition souvenirs and merchandise.

Early bird tickets has been selling from July 1 until August 15; Standard tickets from August 16 to September 15; and Last minute tickets from September 16 to October 15. Register now at !

Hello Kitty Run Manila 2017 is organized by Tokyo Gets Ltd and Ten:22 Business Solutions in partnership with CHERIFER Syrup, along with its official venue partner, SM By the Bay, official media partners; ETC and 2nd Avenue, Manila Bulletin, Philippine Star, Business Mirror and Otaku Asia, major partners Pocari Sweat and Crystal Clear, Toy Kingdom, Skin White, Rizal Park Hotel, Golden Phoenix Hotel, Pascual Creamy Delight, Skechers, Devant, and marketing partners Salonpas, Acer, Banana Peel, Fujifilm Instax, Softex and Healthy Innovations. This event is supported by JLOP (Japan’s Ministry of Economy and Industry, Contents Division).


Sharing some photos and a video of happy participants from the past Hello Kitty Run events. 

Monday, July 24, 2017

Leather care project: Bally patent handbag and patent leather 101

A patent leather handbag is a lovely thing.  If you happen to own one, your patent handbag is your go-to bag for the rainy season.  It's fabulous, glossy exterior seems to repel rain without much effort.  However, during prolonged season of high humidity, especially if you live in the tropics, the patent develops an undesirable, sticky feel.  Patent leather does not hold an excellent track record when dealing with heat and humidity. 

By the way, patent also goes by the term 'vernis'.  

A highly humid environment can make the patent glue melt, resulting to overall stickiness of the leather.  Yes, this thing happens.  When it does, your precious handbag becomes  more susceptible to color transfer from other bags or fabrics; or you may also find the patent bag staining other bags in your closet.  In a scenario like this, prevention is far better than cure.  

Here are some basic tips on how to take care of your patent handbags; also applicable to patent shoes:
1.  Air your patent bag regularly.  Don't just lock it in your closet for months.  Chances are, if you have so many bags, there is a tendency that you will forget about the bags that are silently aging in your closet.
2.  Wipe your handbag clean with a soft cotton cloth.  An old cotton t-shirt can also do the trick.  Make sure your bag is dry before you keep it in the dust bag.
3.  Store your bag in a dust bag. No dust bag? A soft pillow case may also double as a dust bag.
4.  To retain the shape of your bag, use a stuffer when storing your bag. 
5.  Avoid spilling any form of solvent on your bag.  Solvent may cause the color to bleed. 
6.  When the patent becomes sticky, refer to Tip # 2, and then store your bag in a cool, dry place, and observe if the stickiness will disappear.  
7.  If you must apply a leather cleaner on your patent handbag; cleaner must be intended for patent or vernis.  DO test it first on a hidden portion of your bag, before you apply it to the entire bag. 

Here is one of my recently completed leather care projects, featuring a Bally patent handbag. 

BEFORE:  very sticky patent; discoloration - from white to yellow, ink stains and color transfer.  After cleaning the bag, the discoloration and most of the stains were deemed permanent.  

PROCESS:  clean, disinfect, recolor
OUTPUT:  patent with deep red hue

For more before-and-after photos, visit our Facebook and Instagram pages @leathercareproject.  

Sunday, July 23, 2017

Powerman Philippines Empowers the Filipino Duathlete

As the sport of duathlon continues to grow in the Philippines, and around the world, Filipino duathletes get a chance to compete against the best of the best when they test their mettle at the 2017 Powerman Philippines Asian Championships presented by Summit Drinking Water on October 8 at Clark Freeport Zone, Pampanga. 
This is a highly anticipated event not only for seasoned duathletes, but also for athletes who are in the process of transitioning to duathlon and multi-sports.  If you have been wanting to do that ultimate road test after weeks or months of training, then Powerman Duathlon is an event that you should not miss.  
Now on its third year, the F&F International Events Group prides itself with being given the honor this year’s Asian Championships.  Aside from promoting duathlons as a lifestyle, as a sport, and as an event, the main thrust for 2017 is to push the boundaries of the Filipino Duathlete.  The 2017 Powerman Philippines Asian Duathlon Championships Presented by Summit Drinking Water is set to host a minimum of 800 local and foreign participants from all around the world, including elite athletes from US, Europe, Australia and Asia Pacific.
Powerman Duathlon Asian Championship 2017 also highlights the innate strength in running and cycling of the Filipino duathlete.  "It's all about investing in the Filipino duathlete's potential, pushing their boundaries, and expanding their competitive horizons, with the ultimate goal of sending our top Filipino duathlete to the 2019 Powerman World Championships in Zofingen, Switzerland,"  shared by Coach Kaye Lopez, Powerman Philippines' General Manager. 
The race features various categories that will traverse Clark and SCTEx: 
*  Powerman Classic:  10km run, 60km bike, 10km run
* Powerman Short: 5km, 30km, 5km run 
* Powerteens: 5km run, 30km bike, 5km run 

The Clark Freeport Zone, which is about 37 miles northwest of Metro Manila and located in the heart of the culture-rich Central Luzon, proves to be the perfect race venue, with its highly-improved road network and its interesting scenery of graceful old homes with large verandas and historical buildings. Traveling to the venue is also seamless for both local and foreign guests as it is easily accessible via land or air travel.
The 2017 Powerman Philippines Asian Championships Presented by Summit Drinking Water will serve as a qualifying event for the Powerman World Championships in Zofingen, Switzerland. The race is also supported by Clark Freeport Zone and SCTEx as the Official Venue Partner, Cobra Energy Drink ad Official Energy Drink, Columbia as Official Apparel Partner, Activehealth as Official Sports Nutrition Partner, Garmin as Official Timing Partner, Seafood Island Restaurant, Hammer Nutrition, Dan’s Endurance, 2xU, and Skechers Performance.
For more details, registration and updates visit the event’s official website, and subscribe to the official social media accounts in Facebook, Instagram and Twitter through @PowermanPH with official hashtags #NOMANNOPOWER #POWERMANPHPRESENTEDBYSUMMIT.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Leather care project: Tory Burch patent sneakers

You found a perfect pair of sneakers for an overcast kind of weather. The purchase was justified.  It was not a splurge, but a good buy because its style is versatile.  You can even wear it to complete your smart casual ensembles. It's a pair of Tory Burch patent sneakers. ❤😍👌

➤  Soft patent leather that wicks away water (good for drizzles, but not for torrential rain)
➤  White rubber sole - a crowd favorite for a few (fashion) seasons now
➤  Made for walking; won't hurt your feet - a quality that Tory Burch shoes are known for 

A few weeks later, you found out that... 
➤  Its white sole already turned grey because of dust and dirt.  No matter how you tried cleaning it at home, the stain won't disappear.  You couldn't wash it clean and tumble dry, because the shoes are partly made of leather.  😲😨😢
➤  So you brought the pair to two of the bigger handbag/shoe cleaning chains in the city.  They won't accept your shoes for cleaning - they just told you, "the materials tend to get filthy just like that.  There's nothing we can do about it." 

Then you just asked yourself: 1) why?; 2) what now?  

The solution... 
This is not a close-ended article.  In fact, we want to share there is hope for this type of shoes - we can clean and disinfect both leather and rubber to (help) add more mileage to this posh pair.  Here are the "before-and-after" photos straight out of our leather care project studio. ❤😍👌

BEFORE:  Leather is still in good condition, but the rubber sole showed dirt and deep stains.

WORK-IN-PROGRESS:  Clean and disinfect shoes by part.  Rubber and leather must be cleaned separately. 

AFTER:  More mileage ahead!  
For more information, visit us at Facebook - Leather Care Project, or at Instagram: @leathercareproject

Friday, June 30, 2017

Leather care project: make this ALDO pair great again!

Just like any other quality products, genuine leather shoes are meant to stand seasons of use (and abuse) given the right care.  It's rather common that the leather remains intact, while the rest of the shoes start to show some wear-and-tear.  We simply love wearing a pair of soft leather shoes, because they are so comfy and classically stylish.

The thing with soft leather is that, it tends to be sensitive.  It easily absorbs dirt and water.  It is also prone to scratching - but we still love it anyway because of its versatility and usefulness. There is no stopping that wear-and-tear process, but we can extend its useful life through proper cleaning and use of care products.  

Here is a pair of (very) soft leather Aldo shoes, originally in cognac.  This is the type that you would love bringing or wearing while traveling - and you could only wish to extend its 'useful life'. In hindsight, it might even make you think about buying two pairs next time you see something very close to it, if not better.  

Leather care project's objective:  make this Aldo pair great again!  😊

Before: stained, faded, dry leather.  It won't help you achieve that over-all polished look you've always wanted.

1.  Clean using the right products and applicator for this type of leather - interior and exterior.
2.  Disinfect
3.  Condition
4.  Waterproof
5.  Shine 
6.  Store properly 

➤  Air your shoes before storing it, to keep molds and odor-causing germs at bay.  
➤ Think twice before applying dye or paint on sensitive leather.  This could be the fastest way to achieve your goal, but it may cause the leather to crack sooner.  

After:  objective achieved!  😊❤👍

For more information, visit us on Facebook - Leather Care Project.