Italian leather goods are a guarantee of excellence in the world, and among the various tanning districts of the boot, the Tuscan one has a particularly prestigious history and reputation.
The so-called leather district extends between several municipalities in the province of Pisa and Florence, but the district of Santa Croce sull’Arno is the real jewel in the crown of this manufacturing industry. The master craftsmen of the 'Florentine leatherette' still work their products by hand today, and make beautiful bags, practical backpacks, but also accessories for the tobacconist's, elegant wallets and footwear.
“It According to the Tanners Association, the district is concentrated "about 35% of the national production of leather and 98% of the national production of sole leather".
In 1282, the Arte dei Cuoiai e Galigai (leather-workers guild) was created to protect trade secrets and ensure quality control. It included workers involved in all steps in processing the hides, including retailers and curriers, who would apply techniques of dressing finishing and colouring to a tanned hide to reinforce it and make it durable and waterproof.
Even today, Florence remains the undisputed capital of Italian leather goods, counting that one in three companies in Italy is based in the province of Florence. Walking through the center of Florence you can still find streets that refer to Florentine leather goods, such as via delle Conce and via dei Conciatori.