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Leather Design

Leather Designing is one of the most rapidly growing fields within the umbrella field of Fashion Designing in India. Leather goods manufactured in India, such as bags, shoes and belts are in high demand in India as well as in the international market. These are, hence, extensively exported. Designing products using leather is a challenging task, and hence an individual aiming to make this their career must take care of their health and also be high on stamina, as their job requires a lot of physical work.


Leather Design at a Glance

The discipline has evolved on a huge scale in the past few decades :

  • Footwear used to take up nearly 70% of all leather produced in the world but it dropped to nearer 50% in the middle of the last decade
  • In the recent years, there has been a lot of eminent development like transparent leather, Recycled Leather Furniture, Leather Jewellery,etc.

Leather designers perform a mix of the following Tasks on a regular basis :

  • Designing leather products or cloth either on paper or computer.
  • Manufacturing of the final product as designed through various steps like cutting, colouring, stitching, polishing, etc.
  • Collecting and examining leather samples.
  • Managing and coordinating with the production of designs/ products.
  • Staying abreast of the latest trends or fashion, product and techniques.
  • Meeting and consulting clients and dealers to discuss orders.
  • Working within the budget defined by client/ organization.
  • Supervise workers and staff in the team.

Aspirants should possess the following skills and qualities in order to be eligible for Pursuing a career in Leather Designing :

  • Designing skills
  • Good numerical skills
  • Sound knowledge of computer aided designing software
  • Strong planning ability
  • Problem solving ability

About Leather Design Schools

Sr No. College/Institute Location Courses
1. Madras Institute of Fashion Technology Vadapalani, Chennai B.Des in Leather design
2. National Institute of Fashion Technology (NIFT) Delhi, Kolkata,
Chennai, Bangalore
B.Des in Leather Design
3. Footwear Design and Development Institute Noida, Uttar Pradesh B.Des in Shoe Designing
4. GLS Institute of Design Ahmedabad Bachelors (4 years)
Integrated Masters (5 years) in Leather Design

The fundamental areas of study in Leather Design include :

  • Surface Techniques
  • Pattern Making & Grading
  • Design Process & Developments
  • Draping
  • Fashion Trends & Forecasting
  • Design Management & Entrepreneurship
  • Craft Research and Documentation
  • Industry Internship
  • Graduation Project

About the Work Industry/Job Market

Leather Design Graduates have opportunities to work in Industries like :

  • Export and Domestic Manufacturing
  • Retail
  • Buying and
  • Sourcing

They can be appointed in the roles of :

  • Designers
  • Merchandisers
  • Range Developers
  • Buyers
  • Production Managers and Entrepreneurs

The following recent trends can be observed in the Leather Design discipline :

  • In the first quarter of 2008 we began to see some definitive figures showing that less than 50% of the shoes in the world were being made of leather
  • On the other hand, automobile upholstery was only about 1% as we moved into the 20s and was nearly 10% by the mid decade with general upholstery for households and aeroplanes also growing

Freshers can expect a pay in the range of Rs. 3-5 L p.a.
For experienced professionals the range is Rs. 5-6.8 L p.a.

Following are the best companies/studios for leather designing in India :

  • Bata India Ltd
  • Bhartiya International Ltd.
  • Farida Group
  • Lakhani Armaan Group
  • Liberty Shoes Ltd.
  • Mayur Uniquoters Ltd.
  • Metro Shoes Ltd.
  • Mirza International Ltd.

Personalities to Follow :

  • Varun Behl
  • Manav Gangwani
  • Anita Dongre
  • Meera Mahadevia
  • Rajesh Pratap

Associations to Follow :

  • Gucci
  • Saddleback leather co.
  • Prada
  • Ralph Lauren Corporation
  • Wilsons The Leather Experts Inc.
  • Canada Goose
  • Alexander McQueen
  • John Varvatos Enterprises Inc
  • Salvatore Ferragamo S.p.A.
  • Triburg Leathers

Links to Follow :