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How to Repair Discoloration on Leather

Updated February 21, 2017

As leather ages, it can lose its colour and begin to look worn and old. Fading is one of the most common signs of aged leather. but you can take action to fight the inevitable decline of your leather goods.

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  1. Put on a pair of rubber gloves to protect your skin from the colourant. The colourant may end up staining your hands as well as your leather without the gloves.

  2. Shake your bottle of leather colourant for a solid three minutes to ensure it is fully mixed. If you apply separated colourant, your reward will be streaks and varying tones of colour.

  3. Test the colourant against a hidden part of the leather. For example, if you are repairing a leather couch cushion, only apply a small amount of colourant to the bottom of the cushion first. This is a "spot test" that allows you to test the shade of colourant, ensuring it matches the colour of your leather before you continue. If the colour is different, replace the colourant before you go any further.

  4. Apply a thin layer of colourant over the surface of a small sponge. Press the damp sponge to the faded area. Gently dab the sponge onto the leather until it creates an even colour. Pay close attention to any cracks or blemishes in the leather material.

  5. Wipe away any foam that occurs as you sponge the colourant onto the leather. To avoid more foam, refrain from pressing too hard onto the leather material.

  6. Set the leather aside to dry. Use a hair dryer to speed the drying process if your desire.

  7. Practice spraying colourant onto a piece of paper before you apply the second coat of colourant to your faded leather. Practice holding the spray can back far enough to avoid spatter or dripping, but close enough to give the paper an even coat of colour.

  8. Lay the leather item flat before you start spraying. Use weights to keep the leather material stretched and flat while you work.

  9. Spray down the faded area with colourant. Apply the colourant with a steady circular motion, keeping it at a level distance from the leather material.

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Things You'll Need

  • Leather colourant
  • Rubber gloves
  • Sponge
  • Cloth

About the Author

Shae Hazelton is a professional writer whose articles are published on various websites. Her topics of expertise include art history, auto repair, computer science, journalism, home economics, woodworking, financial management, medical pathology and creative crafts. Hazelton is working on her own novel and comic strip while she works as a part-time writer and full time Medical Coding student.

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