Dooney pebbled leather care

susan49

Member
Dec 18, 2020
10
14
Hi all, I’ve just received my new Tobi tote, and I’m not sure what to think about it. This is only my 2nd Dooney, and my first in pebbled leather. I’m disappointed in the feel of the leather. It feels very dry and papery to me. Also, I think the finish looks dull. I bought direct from Dooney, so I know it isn’t fake, but I expected better. I actually think the leather on my Coach outlet bag is nicer than this☹
So I’m wondering if this will soften over time, or perhaps there is a leather conditioner that might help? Any advice or Dooney wisdom is appreciated. Thanks!

CBE3B87A-1300-4B0D-A83F-48D7CF58AA0F.jpeg

69A18774-D013-4E34-A7AF-E563CBD2B129.jpeg
 
Aug 13, 2014
6,106
2,486
I have tons of Dooney pebbled leather handbags.... what I have learned is that pebbled leather is a
description of the look of the leather, not a technical description of the type of leather or it's quality.
What this means is that different styles/collections use different leathers and they may all be
called pebbled leather. BTW, this is true for many manufacturers.

But, to get to your questions, yes, the leather will soften over time with use.
I don't condition my Dooney pebbled leather handbags. Dooney doesn't recommend it.
But lots of ladies do use conditioner, and Apple brand is a favorite.

With the exception of the All Weather Leather pebbled leather collection, the other
Dooney leathers called 'pebbled' are leathers that are embossed to be pebbled.
The All Weather Leather (AWL) collection is unique in that the leather is processed in a way
that shrinks it and creates the pebbled texture. AWL is much heavier and much higher quality.
Do not condition an AWL handbag, as the conditioner relaxes the pebbled grain structure and
can ruin the look and texture. But, pebble leathers that are embossed to have the pebble
texture don't seem to have that issue as far as I know.

Every handbag manufacturer uses a range of leathers in their collections.
It is often difficult to know exactly what leather you are getting
and also hard to compare one manufacturers products to another company.
I also have many Coach handbags. In general, I find the quality of the
Dooney leather to be superior... when comparing comparably priced items.

It must also be said that newer manufacturing and leather processing techniques
have allowed all companies to offer a wider range of leather 'quality'.
Generally, most older or vintage bags used thicker leathers that those used today....
and we would generally classify these as better, although heavier.

And most leather handbags will soften with use, unless the bag is very structured or
the leather is coated. The leather in your handbag looks beautiful and I think it will
soften over time. Most Dooney bags have some structure, especially bags designed as
totes. But the leather itself still softens as you use and handle it.
You could try buffing the leather with a dry microfiber or soft cotton cloth to help bring up
the natural oils. Use circular motions. It's a safe way to freshen up a bag.

If you decide to use a conditioner, first test it in
a small area that's not too visible (like the bottom). But once you condition the bag,
you can't return it.

As you decide whether to keep the bag, also consider the straps. Many ladies love
the narrow, double straps for ease of shoulder carry and access to their handbag on the go.
But it takes a while for the straps to soften. Depending upon how much you carry in the
handbag, the straps might or might not be comfortable. Load the bag up
and test it out in your home. Straps and weight distribution are elements of handbag
design that we rarely think about until we cut the tags and use the bag, and then it's too
late.
 
  • Like
Reactions: OJane

susan49

Member
Dec 18, 2020
10
14
I have tons of Dooney pebbled leather handbags.... what I have learned is that pebbled leather is a
description of the look of the leather, not a technical description of the type of leather or it's quality.
What this means is that different styles/collections use different leathers and they may all be
called pebbled leather. BTW, this is true for many manufacturers.

But, to get to your questions, yes, the leather will soften over time with use.
I don't condition my Dooney pebbled leather handbags. Dooney doesn't recommend it.
But lots of ladies do use conditioner, and Apple brand is a favorite.

With the exception of the All Weather Leather pebbled leather collection, the other
Dooney leathers called 'pebbled' are leathers that are embossed to be pebbled.
The All Weather Leather (AWL) collection is unique in that the leather is processed in a way
that shrinks it and creates the pebbled texture. AWL is much heavier and much higher quality.
Do not condition an AWL handbag, as the conditioner relaxes the pebbled grain structure and
can ruin the look and texture. But, pebble leathers that are embossed to have the pebble
texture don't seem to have that issue as far as I know.

Every handbag manufacturer uses a range of leathers in their collections.
It is often difficult to know exactly what leather you are getting
and also hard to compare one manufacturers products to another company.
I also have many Coach handbags. In general, I find the quality of the
Dooney leather to be superior... when comparing comparably priced items.

It must also be said that newer manufacturing and leather processing techniques
have allowed all companies to offer a wider range of leather 'quality'.
Generally, most older or vintage bags used thicker leathers that those used today....
and we would generally classify these as better, although heavier.

And most leather handbags will soften with use, unless the bag is very structured or
the leather is coated. The leather in your handbag looks beautiful and I think it will
soften over time. Most Dooney bags have some structure, especially bags designed as
totes. But the leather itself still softens as you use and handle it.
You could try buffing the leather with a dry microfiber or soft cotton cloth to help bring up
the natural oils. Use circular motions. It's a safe way to freshen up a bag.

If you decide to use a conditioner, first test it in
a small area that's not too visible (like the bottom). But once you condition the bag,
you can't return it.

As you decide whether to keep the bag, also consider the straps. Many ladies love
the narrow, double straps for ease of shoulder carry and access to their handbag on the go.
But it takes a while for the straps to soften. Depending upon how much you carry in the
handbag, the straps might or might not be comfortable. Load the bag up
and test it out in your home. Straps and weight distribution are elements of handbag
design that we rarely think about until we cut the tags and use the bag, and then it's too
late.
Lavenderjunkie, thanks for all the great info! Definitely going to try to buff with the microfiber cloth first. I really like the style, so I want to make it work. May look into the Apple conditioner. You are right about the straps. They are VERY stiff. Since it will be a winter only bag, I’ll always be wearing sleeves so I think that won’t be a problem. Thanks again for the great info. Love this forum!
 
Aug 13, 2014
6,106
2,486
Lavenderjunkie, thanks for all the great info! Definitely going to try to buff with the microfiber cloth first. I really like the style, so I want to make it work. May look into the Apple conditioner. You are right about the straps. They are VERY stiff. Since it will be a winter only bag, I’ll always be wearing sleeves so I think that won’t be a problem. Thanks again for the great info. Love this forum!
Good luck. It's really a great looking bag if the style works for you.
I have the Tobi tote in a different leather.