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The rise, fall and... renaissance of basil
Leather tanned with redoul has a scent resembling that of Russia leather, which soon made basil highly popular! Manufactured in the past on top-quality local hides, it was used to equip Henri IV’s royal army: knights were clothed in basil overpants.
Basil leather was also long used in the manufacture of aprons for blacksmiths, cobblers, fire fighters and other artisans.

Since the middle of the 19th century, however, in the wake of a series of economic downturns, Basil-makers have taken to mainly using “Mazamet slats” as their raw material. This is a dewoolling by-product, produced by leaving the raw hides in the Mazamet caves prior to separating the wool and the hide. In these caves, a special kind of bacteria multiply, eating the root of the wool and making dehairing easier… however they also damage the hide! This produces average quality leather, mainly used for shoe linings. This explains why the French tanning industry is located in regions with a tradition of sheep-breeding.

Nowadays, given its innocuous and anallergic properties, basil is being restored to its former glory by fellmongers and leather professionals: basil R&D teams are now developing luxury leather articles with top-quality leathers made using tan of plant origin.
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The Natural Leather
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