Suede leather

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Suede gloves
MFA# 38.1341


A Leather finished with a raised nap or pile. The nap on most suede is produced by buffing or abrading the flesh side or split side of leather; the exception is for velvet suede which is produced from the grain side. Good suede has an even nap with dense fibers of a uniform length. It is usually oiled to make it supple but not greasy. In general, velvet suedes are finer than flesh suedes; young animals (kid and calf) also give finer suedes. Suede is not as durable as high quality leather.

Suede shoes
MFA# 53.1064

Synonyms and Related Terms

ante (Esp.); pele acamurçada (Port.); mocka (Sven.); suede calf; suede kid; suede splits; suede velvet

Resources and Citations

  • G.S.Brady, Materials Handbook, McGraw-Hill Book Co., New York, 1971 Comment: p.777
  • Matt Roberts, Don Etherington, Bookbinding and the Conservation of Books: a Dictionary of Descriptive Terminology, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington DC, 1982
  • Marjory L. Joseph, Introductory Textile Science, Holt, Rinehart and Winston, Fort Worth, TX, 1986
  • Edward Reich, Carlton J. Siegler, Consumer Goods: How to Know and Use Them, American Book Company, New York City, 1937
  • American Leather Chemists Association Glossary at
  • Hermann Kuhn, Conservation and Restoration of Works of Art and Antiquities, Butterworths, London, 1986