We know there are thousands, if not millions, of leather companies in the world for you to choose from. What makes Go Forth Goods special?
We believe being good means doing big and small things with integrity. That belief translates to our workmanship---we care about every stitch.
Here’s how it all works:
No matter how high-quality our thread is, it’s never going to be as strong as a solid piece of premium American leather. That means the fewer the seams, the fewer the stress points. Our designs keep this in mind, reducing our goods to the minimum number of seams possible.
For example, many of our duffle bags are made with a single piece of leather and only one seam. The Cooper Satchel is made with only two seams. Decisions like this cost us more in leather, but create a far more durable bag.
How important is the stitching? To us, it’s one of the most important elements in the quality and construction of our products.
We use saddle stitching in our work. The centuries-old sewing technique earned its name since it was the stitch of choice among saddlemakers. Since horse saddles can take a beating and keep going for decades, we knew that approach had passed the test of time.
For saddle-stitching, we use one long piece of three-strand cord thread, made from polyester with a wax coating (the strongest stuff you can buy). We then pass the thread back and forth, creating an overlapping pattern of thread all the way around the seam. When we reach the end, we backstitch in the same holes at least four times. After that, we burnish over the ends so that it can't unravel.
Sewing On Our Bags
When sewing our bags, we only use thick, premium polyester thread. We use an industrial sewing machine for the long seams. Adding an extra step, we double backstitch on all of the high stress points, major seams, and on starting and stopping points. This extra effort makes sure our bags will never come undone. (Other companies usually go back just a couple stitches on the backstitch. We add between eight and ten stitches, because why be just “okay” when you can be really good?)
Our bags take longer to make and have higher labor-cost. But in our opinion, there is no other way to make a truly long-lasting bag.
Our leather starts with hides sourcedand tanned in the USA. We are one of a very small minority of leather businesses in the United States who actually source leather from American cows, since it’s much cheaper to do it the other way.
The quality of leather we use is called Full Grain, it’s the highest quality of leather money can buy. We only use this quality of leather for all the products we make. Our bag leather is a 5-6 oz chrome tanned leather with oils and waxes infused. This creates a wonderful pull up along with adding a water resistant quality that aids in it’s long lasting durability. We 9-10 oz latigo leather for all of our straps we use for our belts, shoulder straps and handles. This is also the same leather we use for our Cooper Satchel bags, making it super strong and indestructible. All of our wallets and notebook covers are made with 3-4 oz vegetable tanned leather sourced from an American tannery in Maine.
Read below for a break down on the different qualities of leather to see why we choose to only use Full Grain leather.
There are 4 different levels of quality in leather. Full Grain, Top Grain, Genuine and Bonded.
What is Full Grain Leather? Full Grain Leather comes from the top layer of the hide which has ALL of the grain, therefore, FULL grain. The natural surface of full grain leather burnishes and beautifies with use. It is the best leather you can buy.
TOP GRAIN LEATHER
What is Top Grain Leather? Top Grain Leather is the second highest grade because it is split from the top layer of blemished hide then sanded and refinished. This is how they get rid of scars and scrapes and light cow brands. Top grain leather does not age nicely with use. They sanded off the strongest fibers of the hide leaving mainly the horizontal (easily pulled apart) fibers.
What is Genuine Leather? Genuine leather is the third grade of leather and is produced from the layers of hide that remain after the top is split off for the better grades. The surface is usually refinished (spray painted) to resemble a higher grade. FUN FACT: Genuine leather is the most common leather used in wallets, bags, belts and other products mass produced by major designer brands and is what you typically find in department store leather goods. This is why they break so quickly and don't last even though they are made with “real” leather.
What is Bonded Leather? Bonded leather is the dust and shavings of the leather glued and pressed together. It is the cheapest leather you can get and quite frankly, Junk! Leftover scraps are ground together with glue and resurfaced to look pretty. Bonded leather is weak and falls apart quickly with use. This is also typically labeled “Real Leather”. Don't be fooled.
One of the things that commonly break on a bag is the hardware. So when looking into how to make a bag that we could guarantee for life we knew solid metal hardware was the only way to go.
SOILD BRASS AND COPPER RIVETS
We only use solid brass and copper rivets on our bags. Our totes get solid copper and the rest of our bags, duffles, messengers, rucksacks, Cooper Satchel, etc all get the solid brass. These are 100% solid brass and copper and are attached by hand one at a time by one of our skilled craftsmen. Each one is hand hammered and peened to create an unbreakable bond. This process has been done for hundreds of years and has proven it’s long lasting durability.
YKK SOILD BRASS ZIPPERS
We only use heavy duty YKK solid brass zippers on our bags to insure that they will stand up to the test of time. YKK is know around the world as the best zippers you can buy.
BUCKLES, D-RINGS, SWIVEL CLIPS AND SNAPS
All of these items are also made with solid brass. Even our nickel platted hardware is solid brass underneath. So there is never a worry that your hardware will start to rust over time.
If you have any questions regarding our quality, leather or how we make our goods, please don't hesitate to ask. Email us at Info @ Goforthgoods.com