Am I overpaying for handmade goods? Why are handmade goods so exorbitantly priced? This article aims to breakdown the rationale behind pricing of handmade goods, with more reference to those made in leather.
Majority of consumers believe that handmade items are expensive merely for the intensive manual labour it requires. While that may be true, there are a host of other factors which influences its price; handmade goods tend to have higher quality, be built from better materials and last longer.
The key to long-lasting leather goods stem from two variables: quality of leather and the stitching method used. Leather craftsmen often employ a particular stitching method called saddle stitching compared to lock stitching, which is a common method resulting from sewing machines. Saddle stitching involves the use of 2 saddlery needles that crosses over each other through every stitching hole. Below is a pictorial example of saddle stitching versus lock stitching.
What saddle-stitching achieves is that should any part of the thread fail as a result of wear-and-tear or abrasion, the other threads would still remain in tension. Compared to lock-stitching, the threads would unravel throughout the entire leather good should any part fail.
So what does this mean to end consumer? This means that consumers will get more durable and longer lasting leather goods as a saddle-stitched leather goods will not fall apart as easily as opposed to that of a machine-stitched item due to the very nature of the stitching methods.
Until today, no machine in this world can replicate the saddle stitching technique. Therefore, as the saying goes, you get what you pay for. So be assured, when you pay a little extra for a handmade leather goods next time, you are also getting a more durable and a longer lasting product that is made with love. Below is a short clip of a Hermes craftsman saddle-stitching.