From Amelia Earhart to Marlon Brando and James Dean to today’s high-fashion models, leather jackets have been a statement garment throughout U.S. history.  Leather jackets were first introduced in the early 1900s as apparel reserved for the military and aviators. But it wasn’t long before function met fashion. In 1928 a Manhattan (NY) raincoat maker by the name of Irving Schott designed the first motorcycle jacket for Harley Davidson and the leather jacket has been in our closets ever since.


There are four types of leather; full-grain leather, top-grain leather, genuine leather and bonded leather.  Full Grain Leather, derived from the top layer of the hide, is the best leather money can buy.  It’s the full grain leather that becomes more beautiful with age.

Top Grain Leather is the second highest grade. It is strong and durable, but does not age well. It is split from the top layer of blemished hide and sanded.

The third grade of leather is referred to as Genuine Leather. This is produced from the layers of hide that remain after the top is split off for the better grades.

The least expensive leather is Bonded Leather. It is exactly what its name implies; leather scraps are ground, glued and pressed (e.g. bonded) together. Leather purists would suggest this is not “real” leather. Bonded leather is weak and degrades rapidly.

Because of the different properties associated with the different types of leather, it’s important that you select an expert leather cleaner when it comes time to clean your leather jacket, coat, pants – and even your leather handbag.  St Louis Park residents have entrusted Village Cleaners with their leather garment cleaning needs since 1951.

When you bring your leather garment to us in Miracle Mile Shopping Center in St. Louis Park, we’ll do a thorough inspection to determine the type of leather and the composition of any spots or stains in order to assess the best cleaning treatment and solution for your leather clothes and handbags.

Miracle Mile Shopping Center is conveniently located just off Highway 100 at Excelsior Blvd. in St. Louis Park, MN; just 3.6 miles north of the heart of Edina.


With general wear, leather jackets and coats should be cleaned once a year by a leather apparel cleaner. Even when your leather clothes look clean, they like have dirt particles in them.  Cleaning the leather annually will keep it fresh and longer lasting.  Should you spill something on your leather clothing, the sooner you get it to an expert leather cleaner, the better.

Stains such as ink, grease, food, beverage, soil, paint, blood, rust, mold and mildew are each treated  differently. We also make sure that stains are removed safely without noticeably altering the appearance of your leather garment. During the leather cleaning process we also use restorative natural oils to add to the longevity of the leather garment.

If you get caught in a Minnesota rainstorm, it’s a good idea to bring your leather jacket in to be cleaned at St. Louis Park leather clothes cleaners, Village Cleaners. Water has a tendency to dry the natural oils of the leather. Hair spray, lotions and perfumes also dry out leather if they have prolonged or frequent contact with the leather.  Dryness leads to cracking and cracking ruins your luxurious leather coat or jacket.


Due to the weight of a leather jacket or coat, we recommend you hang it on a padded hanger, preferably in a cool, well-ventilated closet. If you plan to store the leather coat for an extended period of time, cover it with a sheet. Do not store in in a plastic bag because that will block the ventilation that leather needs to breathe. Also, don’t crowd the leather garment with other clothes, coats or jackets.


As durable as leather is, it still needs some TLC every once in a while. And if you carry a leather briefcase or purse, you know how it can get scuffed and scratched. Some scuffs actually lend to the beauty of the leather satchel, but others actually make the handbag look damaged. Maybe you didn’t think there was anything you could do about that. But there is. At Village Cleaners and Shirt Laundry our leather cleaners can buff those scuffs, repair those scratches and bring your leather bags back to their original beauty.

Perhaps the damage to  your leather briefcase or purse is beyond the average wear and tear and you aren’t sure it can be repaired. Or maybe you’ve never had it cleaned and think it’s beyond help. Before tossing out the old leather satchel or purse for a new one, bring it in and let us see what we can do to help you.  Leather accessories are valuable investments that make a statement about their owners. Give us a chance to give your favorite leather bag a second chance.