HORWEEN LEATHER CO.
HORWEEN LEATHER CO.
THE ONLY SHELL CORDOVAN THAT COUNTS
What does a National Football League (NFL) or a National Basketball Association (NBA) ball have in common with your futur JOSEPH BONNIE strap?
An Idea? No? The answer can be summed up in one word: HORWEEN.
It is in Chicago, behind the red door of 2015 North Elston Avenue, that the “Horween Leather Co.” tannery has been working leather since 1927.
A legendary name whose origins go back to the end of the 19th century with the arrival of a Ukrainian immigrant in the “Land of the Free”.
HORWEEN LEATHER CO.
MORE THAN 100 YEARS OF HISTORY
Isodore Horween (Horwitz or originally Horowitz), a tanner by profession, arrived in the United States in 1893, during the period of the Chicago World’s Fair.
It was at this event that he met the owner of a local tannery whom he gently ‘provoked’ by promising to improve the quality of his leather.
“Challenge accepted!” This same boss hires him on the Monday following their discussion.
12 years later and after good and loyal services, he decides to create his own company: Horween Leather Co.
Close to his “row material”, he moved to Division Street in 1905 on the north side of the city, after having bought the premises from the Herman Loescher and Sons tannery.
In 1927, Horween Leather Company sold its Division Street premises and consolidated its North Elston Avenue operations, which by 1936 had grown to 336 workers.
A true “success story” due to, among other things, its links with the automotive industry and its specialization in the manufacture of high-pressure pump seals.
It was during these same years that Horween Leather Company began to be connected to the world of sport. This was thanks to Isodores two sons, Ralph and Arnold, both American soccer champions and to the proximity of the Bears (NFL) team’s workshops.
A close collaboration was established between the two entities so that Horween became an official supplier to both the NFL and the NBA.
Is the connection clearer now?
(crédits photos @VeryGoodLord)
SHELL CORDOVAN HORWEEN
THE ONE AND ONLY
For more than a century, the quality of leather tanning coming from the Horween workshops has been confirmed.
Its reputation is indeed that of a know-how, without compromise on quality, in particular leather which made its international success: the cordovan.
The « Genuine Shell Cordovan » or the art of tanning at its best.
More than a color, it is a very specific leather from a particular part of a horse skin. Its working process takes no less than 6 months. During this period the skin is tanned with fats, oils and waxes.
The tasks are mostly manual and the overall process almost unchanged since the Industrial Revolution.
The results is incredible depth and brilliance. The appearance of the Shell Cordovan Horween is unique, which is why it is prized in the shoe world (we immediately think of Alden) and adopted a long time ago by pioneering markets such as Japan.
It’s no secret that the idea to develop a range of straps with this material has been in our mind for a long time now…
The only thing left was to seize the right moment and the right opportunity to make it.
A connection between our Limousin workshop and a passionate supplier, successful tests and a great desire to bring you a worthy result.
It is now a done deal!
FOR A DAZZLING RESULT
We wanted to start by working with three colors from the Shell Cordovan Horween collection.
A deep black, a rich burgundy and a green with such special nuances.
You have the choice between three types of watch straps: A classic one with stitching and threading all along without forgetting edge dye applied three times rather than one, the BUND version now known to all, and an absolutely superb rallye strap.
IN LIMITED EDITION?
Simply due to our production capacity.
Difficult to come by and very expensive, the Horween Shell Cordovan must be desirable and desired …
This does not mean that we will not produce this strap again in the months and years to come. However, it will always be offered in limited quantities.
Enjoy it while it lasts.