J&FJ Baker & Co is a family owned tannery located in the southern England countryside in the city of Devon. Bakers specializes in Oak Bark tanned leather, a traditional form of tanning leather that uses only oak bark and water. Tucked away along the River Coly in Devon England, Bakers has been tanning leather using Oak Bark liquor for over 600 years. And they do it without the use of any chemicals or acids.
To tan their leather, Bakers uses large pits fill with a super concentrated oak bark liquor and chunks of oak bark, where the hides will soak for over a year. This slow gentle tanning process maintains the natural alignment of the fibers in the leather. This creates a leather is hard wearing with a high tensile strength. Once the tanning process is complete master craftsman, called Curriers, use skills passed down from generation to generation to finish and care for the leather. After being stained, the hides are coated with a mixture of fish oil and tallow, called “dubbin", that protects the leather during shipping. This give the leather the signature white streaks. Oak Bark Tanned leather remains a traditional English leather because of the hard work J&FJ Baker employees put into each hide. With every step of the tanning process being done by hand using techniques refined over 6 centuries, Bakers only produces 80 hides a week, ensuring each hide is the finest representation of this traditional leather.
We use primarily Oak Bark Bridle leather with our belts and strapped goods. Bridle leather describes the finishing applied to the oak bark tanned leather that incorporates a beautifully stained grain side (top surface) and an equally attractive flesh side (bottom surface or backside). Originally created for use on horses as bridles and needs to be comfortable for the animal to wear. Because of its use in the equestrian industry, Bridle leather is always visually stunning, nourished with waxes and oils to allow it to be flexible and smooth, yet strong and durable. It's a labor intensive process that requires years of training. J&FJ Baker & Co is believed by many in the industry to be the best bridle leather made in the world.
As the US Agent for J&FJ Baker, Carmine Jack Leather has Oak bark tanned leather available for sale within the USA. Please visit our Maker Supply Page to see the different cuts of leather available for purchase.
Carmine Jack Leather is the US distribution agent for J&FJ Baker & Co's equestrian leathers. We offer a range of precut oak bark bridle and vegetable tanned harness straps, butts, double shoulders and backs. We also carry their famous reproduction of the Russian Reindeer Crosshatch leather found in the sunken wreck of the Metta Catharina. Our wholesale maker supply store has moved to wholesale.carminejackleather.com