The Boss Lady
Usually, when we think of luxury Italian travel destinations we think of places like Positano, Cinque Terre or Capri. I was recently planning a trip to Italy with a friend and our challenge was to find a luxury travel destination which was not overrun with people….wait for it: in August. Anyone who has ever been to Italy knows that August is peak tourist season for foreign tourists as well as the time the Italians have their ferie (summer holidays). If you are looking for a quiet relaxing holiday, the popular places can border on hellish.
At first blush visiting an outlet sounds like a shopping heaven. Luxury labels as far as the eye can see … at 80% of the RRP.
Once you actually arrive you will very quickly realize that all is not well in shopping heaven. Outlet stores exist because manufacturers cannot sell these garments in their flagship stores. Ponder that for a minute!
The other thing with outlet shops is they are designed to make you buy as much as possible. This is stock that they just want to get rid of! Sales assistants will do everything except wash your windows to entice you to buy stuff. I know this sounds obvious as all retail is designed to make consumers spend… but this push to sell, sell, sell is amplified in outlet shops. It is the Olympic games of impulse shopping.
What is it? Vachetta leather is uncoated untanned leather.
What does that mean? Vachetta absorbs everything. It is not treated, so will stain and watermark easily. Vachetta leather is like pine wood, it starts off light and turns a honey colour over time (called patina). This natural progression is inevitable.
Where is vachetta most commonly found? – Vachetta is the nude tan leather found on all Louis Vuitton Monogram and Damier Azur handbags and travel accessories.
How should I care for vachetta on a daily basis? The best way to care for vachetta is to not get it dirty or wet. Following these basic steps will see your vachetta showing less wear over time.
Try to Avoid:
- Using moisturizer or hand sanitizer when you are carrying a vachetta trimmed bag
- Touching the vachetta leather with dirty hands
- Getting caught in the rain
- Allowing your bag to rub on denim or other unfasted colours
Maintain your vachetta:
- Regularly clean vachetta with baby wipes that are both fragrance-free and alcohol-free.
- Condition vachetta with a trusted leather conditioner. The daily luxe recommends Cadillac brand or Apple brand leather conditioners. Be careful which other leather conditioner you use as some may darken the vachetta.
What can I do to prevent staining? New nude vachetta can be treated with a waterproof protector. The daily luxe recommends Tana brand “All Protect” spray. Be careful which protector you use as some may darken the vachetta. Always follow the manufacturer’s instructions and first patch test in an inconspicuous area and allow to dry.
Will the vachetta change of its own accord? The patina of the vachetta will honey over time. That being said, there is a difference between patina and dirt. You cannot remove patina , this occurs naturally. Dirt accumulates from use and can be removed.
What do I do if I get a mark on vachetta leather?
- Don’t panic. Panic helps no one.
- Dab the mark. Attempt to remove the stain by using fragrance-free and alcohol-free baby wipes. Dab gently. Do not rub the stain into the vachetta, it will only spread and deepen the stain.
- Moisten the remaining area. Once you have dabbed the stain, gently moisten the remaining strip of the vachetta. This will help avoid a watermark. If the spill or mark is only a recent, using baby wipes is usually sufficient to remove these and avoid a stain.
- Allow to dry. Once the vachetta has dried see if the stain or water mark has reduced or disappeared.
- Condition. If the stain or mark has disappeared then use Cadillac or Apple brand leather conditioner to replenish the leather.
What do I do if there is a remaining mark ?
Use a magic eraser. Gently rub the eraser on the vachetta in a singular motion. Don’t rub back and forth. Magic eraser is brilliant to lift stains but it is harsh and can damage the vachetta if used heavily. Once the stain is removed use Cadillac or Apple brand leather conditioner to replenish the leather. This method is usually sufficient to remove older watermarks and other minor marking.
If the stain is still not completely gone (and you are feeling brave)…
Once again wet the whole strap of vachetta and use the magic eraser to remove the stain. Again, use a singular motion. Be sure to condition the leather after cleaning to avoid the leather drying out and cracking.
If you still cannot remove a stain
Decide whether or not you can live with the stain. If you can, then get on with it. If you can’t, consider dying the vachetta a darker colour or selling the bag.
So…is vachetta worth the trouble?
This is subjective and everyone is different.
Some people love white vachetta and will only purchase new bags.
Some people can’t stand new vachetta and prefer an aged vachetta which is easier to care for. I love vintage vachetta, so I am clearly biased in favour of a honey patina.
Then there are people avoid vachetta all together and prefer to carry a Louis Vuitton epi leather or Damier Ebene bag.
Just remember! New vachetta marks easily and is harder to keep clean. Aged vachetta has a honey patina and tends to show less marking and is easier to maintain.