How to Break in a Saddleback Leather Bag

Have you recently purchased a saddleback leather bag made with timeless, full-grain leather and brass hardware? Are you looking for a long-lasting, stylish companion to accompany you wherever your travels might take you? If so, then it may be time to invest in a Saddleback Leather bag. Breaking in any piece of full-grain, veg-tanned leather isn’t tricky at all – but it does take some patience and dedicated care.

How to Break in a Saddleback Leather Bag

Not only are they crafted with the highest quality leather and materials, but their design and construction ensure that they can stand the test of time. To get the most out of your saddleback investment, we’ve put together some helpful tips on how to break in a saddleback leather bag as well as covers or used items that need a little bit of love! Read on to find out the best tricks for breaking in your Saddleback Leather Bag.

What is Saddleback Leather Bag?

Saddleback Leather is a premium brand of handcrafted, full-grain leather bags, wallets, and backpacks. Their products are designed to provide unbeatable durability and strength while also being lightweight enough to make them comfortable to carry or wear.

They also come with a “100-Year Warranty,” which ensures that the bag will last you a lifetime and can be repaired or replaced at no cost should something happen to it.

Things to Remember While Breaking in a Saddleback Leather Bag

1. Condition of the Bag

The first step to breaking in a saddleback leather bag is to condition it. This will help protect it from the elements and prevent cracking or damage from general wear and tear. Use a high-quality, all-natural leather conditioner specifically designed for use with veg-tanned leathers. Apply this evenly over the entire surface of the bag and allow it to soak in.

2. Handle with Care

Handling Your Saddleback Leather Bag

When handling your saddleback leather bag, use both hands to avoid putting too much strain on one side or the other. This will help prevent any unnecessary stretching or creasing of the leather. As you use it more often, the natural oils from your skin will begin to soften and shape the leather, making it more supple and comfortable in your hands.

3. Keep It Dry

Leather is a material that absorbs moisture, so it’s important to keep your saddleback bag dry whenever possible. If the bag does get wet, make sure to air-dry it away from direct heat sources or sunlight for best results.

Required Items

To begin breaking in a Saddleback Leather bag, you’ll need the following items:

  • A soft cloth
  • Neutral leather conditioner or mink oil
  • Cleaning supplies specifically designed for leather, such as saddle soap
  • A shoe brush or other stiff brush
  • Waterproofing spray (optional)

Once you’ve gathered the necessary items, you can begin to break in your Saddleback Leather bag.

10 Ways How to Break in a Saddleback Leather Bag

Step 1: Thoroughly Clean the Bag

Start by cleaning your Leather bag with a damp soft cloth and a leather-specific cleaner such as saddle soap. Focus on cleaning any areas that are particularly dirty. Dirt may contain substances that can dry out leather over time and damage the material.

Focus on Cleaning Any Areas That Are Particularly Dirty

Step 2: Condition the Bag

After cleaning, use a soft cloth to apply a generous layer of leather conditioner or mink oil to your Saddleback Leather bag. This will help soften and protect the material as you break it in. The bag should be evenly coated, without excess oil anywhere.

Step 3: Work the Bag

Use a shoe brush or stiff brush to work the leather conditioner into the bag. Focus on areas that have visible creases or wrinkles, as these will benefit most from breaking in. Be patient and gentle; it’s best not to rush this process.

Step 4: Let the Bag Dry

Allow the Saddleback Leather bag to dry naturally for best results. If you’re in a hurry, you can speed up the drying process with a hairdryer set on low. Make sure that the bag is completely dry before moving on to the next step.

Step 5: Repeat Steps 1-4 as Needed

For best results, repeat steps 1-4 until you’ve achieved the desired level of softness and suppleness. Depending on how stiff the bag is to begin with, this could take anywhere from a few days to a couple of weeks. Be patient; it will be worth it in the end.

Step 6: Apply Waterproofing Spray (Optional)

If you’d like, you can use a waterproofing spray to further protect your Saddleback Leather bag from water damage. Follow the directions on the specific product that you’ve chosen carefully, and apply a light coat of spray over the entire bag.

Step 7: Allow the Bag to Dry Again

Let the Saddleback Leather bag dry completely before using it, as this will help ensure that the waterproofing spray is fully absorbed into the material.

Step 8: Use Your Bag

Once your Saddleback Leather bag is broken in, you can enjoy it for many years to come. Use it regularly and keep it well-maintained with occasional cleaning and conditioning to ensure optimal performance.

Step 9: Consider a Repair Kit

Saddleback Leather sells a repair kit that can help you make minor fixes when needed. It includes patches, filler compounds, thread, and an awl. It’s especially helpful if your bag starts to show signs of wear and tear.

Saddleback Leather Sells a Repair Kit

Step 10: Consider Professional Repair Services

For major repairs, you may need to contact a professional leather repair service. Saddleback Leather offers these services as well, so be sure to check out their website for more information.

Breaking in a Saddleback Leather bag is an important step to ensure that it lasts for years. With the right supplies and patience, you can make your bag as soft and supple as the day it was made.

7 Safety Precautions to Follow When Breaking in a Saddleback Leather Bag

Breaking in a saddleback leather bag is an important task to ensure that the bag fits your body and can support the weight of items you will store inside. It’s important to take certain safety precautions when breaking in your bag to avoid any potential injury or damage. Here are 7 safety precautions you should consider when breaking in your saddleback leather bag:

1. Read the manufacturer’s instructions Carefully. Before you start breaking in your saddleback leather bag, be sure to read and follow the manufacturer’s instructions carefully. This will help ensure that you’re taking all of the necessary steps to break in the bag safely and correctly.

2. Use a gentle leather conditioner. Before breaking in your saddleback leather bag, use a gentle and natural leather conditioner on the material to soften it up. This will help make the process easier and ensure that you don’t damage the material or cause any long-term wear and tear.

3. Wear protective gloves. Whenever you’re breaking in your saddleback leather bag, it’s important to wear protective gloves to ensure that you don’t injure yourself while stretching and molding the leather.

4. Avoid heat and moisture. When breaking in a saddleback leather bag, it’s important to avoid using any heat or moisture as this can cause permanent damage to the material.

5. Take your time. Breaking in a saddleback leather bag requires patience and time, so it’s important to take your time when doing so. You don’t want to rush the process, as this could lead to mistakes that could potentially ruin your bag.

Breaking in a Saddleback Leather Bag

6. Test the fit often. As you break in your saddleback leather bag, it’s important to test the fit often to ensure that you’re sculpting it properly. This will help you avoid any major mistakes and ensure that the bag fits perfectly when you’re done.

7. Seek professional help. If you’re having difficulty breaking in your saddleback leather bag, it’s best to seek out the help of a professional who can properly guide you through the process. This will ensure that the job is done correctly and that your bag is broken in safely.

By following these 7 safety precautions, you’ll be able to safely and properly break in your saddleback leather bag.


All in all, owning a Saddleback Leather bag or any other leather craft item is an investment that’s worth the effort. With the right care and maintenance, you can take your item’s life to numerous years.

Taking the time to break in your leather bag may not be easy, but with these few suggestions on how to break in a saddleback leather bag, you’ll find the journey much more enjoyable and successful.

Assembling a routine that works best for you to focus on long-term ticket items such as waxes and conditioners will eventually shine through on your Saddleback Leather bag and make it last longer with fewer wrinkles.

Give your leather bag its best chance with regular maintenance of conditioning, oils, creams, lanolin base polishes, and oil-based polishes to please you while inspiring confidence in others. So don’t wait for another second—start breaking in your new Saddleback Leather Bag today!

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Matt Clark

Hi, this is Matt, and I am a leathercraft hobbyist. I have been working with leather for quite a bit of time. When I was a teenager, my father taught me the basics of leathercraft. Along the way I have learned a lot of things about leather work leather items, restoring leather, and creating leather accessories. I started this blog to share my knowledge of leatherworking with others and help people learn about this amazing craft. I also wanted to create a community of like-minded people who could share ideas and support each other in their leatherworking journey.

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