Chromexcel is the classic “pull-up” leather meaning that, when folded and flexed, greases that were impregnated into the skin migrate causing a very nice tonal effect. It also has a very bright luster or can be left unpolished to have more of a matte finish look.
Chromexcel is a very versatile leather and is often found in boat shoes, classic shoe styles from Alden and Allen Edmonds, and many belts and small leather goods. Chromexcel has a “refined ruggedness” and will quickly develop character and having similar aesthetics to your grandfather’s old wallet very quickly.
Chromexcel is only made by Horween Leather Co. in Chicago where it has been being made consistently since the early 1900’s.
The process in creating a piece of Chromexcel takes 89 separate processes (many of which are completely by hand) and takes 28 working days to complete. Unlike many leathers, Chromexcel is air dried which allows the leather to shrink back on itself. Many tanneries will cringe at this concept because it decreases the yield (tanneries sell leather by the square foot) but also gives the leather a tighter, more calf-like, break as opposed to other drying methods like pasting or vacuum drying.