What is Sheep Leather?
There are approximately 1 billion sheep around the worl. China has one of the largest sheep populations with around 187 million, followed by India with 75 million, then 74.7 million, next on the list is Sudan with 52.5 million and 48.7 million. The North Yorkshire moors in England manages around 1.7 million sheep. England has a sheep population of around 15 million with the South West coming in the highest with 3.1 million sheep grazing the land.
It is estimated that there are over 1,000 different breeds of sheep in the world with America having over 60 breeds alone.
Chickens are the worlds largest population of livestock animals with around 19 billion, that’s almost 3 per person, followed by cattle with around 1.4 billion, close on the tail of cattle is sheep and pigs who are not far behind cattle.
Sheep skin is mainly used for the wool they produce, being around to produce large numbers per year with shearing the sheep, wool is a massive trade.
Sheepskin Wool Jacket
Sheep skins come with wool on hides, used greatly in the fashion industry for jackets and wool on hides for rugs and decorative purposes. As well as leather jackets, a large number of gloves come with wool inside of them. The automotive trade uses a great deal of wool for wash mitts in the vehicle detailing industry as it’s a safer way to wash vehicles with little damage caused to paintwork.
It’s not just clothing that sheepskin are used. The furniture industry produces a great deal of sheepskin items every year.
Sheeps are reared mainly for the wool and the leather finish varies across breeds considerably, sheepskin is very similar to goat skin and people do get some breeds of sheep and goat mixed up as they can look similar, sheepskin is less resistant to goat skin.
Sheepskin Ladies Gloves
A lot of finished sheepskins are semi aniline hides this means it has been dyed through with translucent aniline dyes and then a pigmented clear coat lacquer topcoat has been applied over the surface to even out the aniline dye process.
Shearling leather is a form of sheep or lambs’ skin it’s just a specific breed of sheep used for the purpose of Shearling items. Shearling Hides are not to be confused with Sherpa materials.
Sheepskin flying jackets used to be worn by those who flew planes for the European air force and this was a typical very iconic style of flying jacket. The British skinheads made this type of jacket very popular in the 1960’s. They are known as a bomber jacket, as it was the bombers who wore these jackets. In 1917 the US started to distribute flying jackets for those flying in open cockpit bombers. Then in 1926 Leslie Irvin designed the first sheepskin flying jacket and this is when they became very popular. Leather jackets have become a massive wardrobe staple and must have item.
Sheepskin Bomber Flying jacket
Keeping leather jackets in perfect shape involves regular care with leather jacket cleaners and leather jacket conditioners.