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Great Leather Helpful Info

Can You Alter a Leather Coat to be a Smaller Size?

Of course, the degree of difficulty corresponds with the degree of change.

Taking a coat in at the waist, sides, or back seam, may not be a big project - if you are able to take it in enough without going into the sleeves (side seam) or collar (back seam). As long as you can start at the bottom of the sleeve hole or beneath the collar.

If it is a lamb coat, the seam allowances that have been glued down flat may have adhered permanently (glue on lamb sticks!). These are really hard to get up and sometimes they have to be cut away in places with a razor blade, which makes it difficult to get smooth transition in the areas where you begin and end tapering. With some skill this may not be too noticeable, but requires more time than taking in a cowhide.

To fully resize a coat, more than taking it in at the side or back seams has other considerations. As you take in the sides, it does pull the sleeve hole in on the sides, making it smaller, but it may have been cut too deep to ever look and function correctly. Also, how much can it be changed without negatively affecting the pocket placement? (This is also a consideration if you want to cut a long coat off.) Possibly enough could be taken out of the back by going straight up into the collar. Then resizing the collar and putting it back on. Communications and a fitting take time as well.

Hopefully, you just need your coat taken in as we described in the first paragraph above. But if you are still considering a whole new size because it is a coat you really love and you can't find one like it anywhere else, and you are willing to go the expense, we will be happy to consult with you. If you are not in our local area you will need a digital camera, the ability to email photos, and someone to measure for you.


First look it over carefully and try to detect if there are any weak spots in the panels and try to protect them by not stressing them. You can protect the back panels of the jacket where you sit, by just taking a little care with them when you get in and out of the car. Notice where a seat belt may rub. If you have a lamb jacket you may want to keep a scarf in the car to throw over your shoulder before you put your seat belt on. Be observant when you put your gloves in your pockets. Don’t wad them up and jam them in the pockets or your jacket my tear at the corners of the pockets.

When zipping your jacket, make sure the pin is seated well in the box before you pull on the zipper pull. If it is not, it’s not going to zip and each pull will put unnecessary wear on the tape at the pin. There is a picture of a zipper worn at the pin on our Shipping page.

Keep it moist. Use a good leather conditioner on a regular basis. We think the Urad products are the best made! After you condition your coat you can seal the moisture in and help to keep the elements and dirt and oil out with a good water repellent spray. Our pick for conditioning.

If your jacket gets wet, wipe off the surface moisture with a clean dry towel and hang it up in a well ventilated area, but not where there is a hot air vent blowing on it. Let it dry naturally.

If it tears, get help right away. Never put tape on a tear, as it will pull up the fibers when you take it off and make the tear worse. And never use those tear kits, you can see the disastrous effect at the bottom of our Tears page.

It’s a good idea to clean your leather leather jacket before storing.

Clean and moisturize and then make sure it’s dry before you hang it up. Remember leather needs to breathe, so avoid plastic bags unless it will be for a very short period of time. Place squarely on a padded hanger. A natural fabric drape to cover it with is a good idea. An old sheet and with a hole for the hanger will work if you don't have something made for this purpose. Covering prevents dust from settling on the shoulders. Hang in the closet, or away from sun and dry heat vents. Make sure it is not packed tightly between other hanging items.