Is there a difference between Leder Ogawa and Horween Cordovan leather? The handmade Lighthouse Leather Astragal wallet review with the reverse black shell Cordovan with the tannery stamp is a memorable wrap, slim card wallet.
(if you want to see all the features and how many cards and cash it can hold, please watch the video)
While going through the Instagram site of Australian company Lighthouse Leather Company with the thought of finding something nice, I came across a quite attractive green cordovan wallet with red pueblo leather. Wondering what else they have? I continued scrolling to find the Horween leather of Asia, Leder Ogawa from Japan, which they call evershine. It is in black cordovan, beautiful in a reverse configuration that Lighthouse Leather calls Astragal.
Yet what kept me wondering was, is Leder Ogawa leather as good as Horween leather? That is what we are about to find out as we look at it. When we open the box, we have a thank you card from Alex Zucchi, who is the owner/maker. I contacted him via email to get our special order going.
There are only a couple tannery stamps on cordovan hides, and so it does take a special order. The sewing looks excellent, and the bottom has a lovely high gloss burnish. It looks like Alex does that with most of his products, and in addition, we get a nice stamp from him. This is a reverse configuration, therefore we have the cordovan leather, the evershine as Ogawa calls it, on the exterior instead of it showing on the interior. Leder Ogawa leather goes through degreasing, drying, shaving, glazing, and dyeing, which makes their secret sauce. Then for the finishing, they use mimosa tannins. Done in very small batches, all by hand and not rushed, sometimes taking up to six months to get to a complete cordovan hide. Horween goes through a similar process, yet it is a little bit different.
From a feature perspective, it is a pretty simple wallet. It has has two slots on the exterior, one in the front and the other in the back. Cards and cash work well. In addition, it has an interior slot for more cards, suitable for the less frequently used cards and some cash.
It measures 4 x 2.9 x 0.5” and weighs 40 grams, an equivalent of 1.4 ounces. Quite a beautiful wallet. The company makes no recommendation on the number of cards. It can accommodate six to eight, plus cash which seems to be working just fine, and of course, it will stretch. It is designed and made in Australia from full-grain vegetable-tanned Leder Ogawa cordovan leather. Being flesh side out, you can look down and you will see the evershine, the shiny cordovan finish of the black cordovan on the interior. When we look at this a little bit closer, we can see that it has a beautiful sheen to it.
From a usability perspective, the flare that it is equipped with, where the two pieces of leather wrap over each other, you would think it would promote cards falling out, but they do not because, instead, it pinches them at the bottom. Therefore, it secures while it provides great capacity at the top that could expand at the bottom.
Finally, what is the difference between Leder Ogawa and Horween leather? Well, the difference comes down to how they do their cordovan pieces’ final finishing. The Leder Ogawa uses the aforementioned dyeing process that is their special mechanism, it is a manual process that they go through. Horween, on the other hand, does a lot of similar things too, but there is a slight difference. Thus, if it becomes right down to is Leder Ogawa cordovan leather better than Horween, since both methods which are different come to the same conclusion, it becomes a matter of personal preference.
While I love this Leder Ogawa leather, and I am impressed by all the manual processes they go through, I like the smell of Horween leather, which is just divine and a little better to my taste.
The final score of this wallet is 5 for the quality, 2 for the price for it is pretty expensive, 3 for the features, 4 for the usability, and 4 for the perception. That gives us a final score of 3.8 out of 50.