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I recently wrote a post on How to: care for soft leather. From that I’ve been asked to create a guide on caring for fishskin material, so here’s the low-down!
Fishskin is a highly textured material that is surprisingly hard-wearing. We have 2 kinds of fishskin in our range, a regular fishskin and a glazed fishskin. The glazed fishskin has a coating on it that means the material is going to be less pourous (i.e. able to absorb water/be effected by getting wet). Our glazed fishskins use the word “shiny” in their title. Interestingly, the non-glazed fishskin changes colour over time. You’ll find that it lightens slightly, which is great to be aware of as you are designing. You can slow this process by making sure that you store the shoes out of direct sunlight.
To my research and experience, there is no specific product on the market to care for fishskin. To clean them, the best thing is to take a clean, soft, white cloth and gently wipe over the shoes. You can very lightly dampen the cloth with a little clean water to help remove mud, but proceed cautiously. It is important to protect your shoes with a water-proofing spray before their first wear, otherwise the dye can become a little blotchy. For a full briefing on how to approach waterproofing your fishskin shoes, take a look at my blogpost here.
I hope that this helps!
Posted by Jodie on 25 May 2011.