Coach Glove Tanned Leather Legacy Classic – An American Icon
First of all, I must say that I have been a collector of Coach bags since the 1970s and do not represent the company in any way. I love your products and I am sharing with you what I have learned from collecting, studying and owning almost every catalog along with an extensive collection, passion and knowledge of your brand over the last 45 years. I consider Coach’s ‘glove-tanned’ leather history to be an American icon we can all be proud of, here in the US.
The story behind the Coach Glove tanned leather is as unique to America as apple pie and baseball, and I literally mean ‘baseball’! Here you will discover why.
The story began in 1941 with a company known as Manhattan Leather bags in New York, owned by Lillian and Miles Cahn. Legend has it that Miles loved baseball and was amazed at how his leather baseball glove was so durable and never wore out. She decided to visit a ‘baseball glove’ leather plant to see how their leather was treated, and it was there that she discovered the process of ‘tanning’ gloves, and it was then that she decided her bags and luggage would be better made using this same process.
Glove tanning keeps the leather soft and supple, yet durable, while showing off the beautiful natural grains of cowhides. Therefore, on many previous Coach bags, you would see this written on their “creed patch” inside the bag, indicating that this bag was
‘made in the united states of
Totally natural tanned cowhide leather glove.
Variations in grain are characteristic
in full-grain natural leather
It wasn’t long before it was a huge hit and in demand across the country. Not only were they made from the finest glove-tanned leather, they were also handcrafted with meticulous stitching, real brass or nickel hardware, and the quality was superb compared to anything else on the market at the time.
The Coach Glove tanned leather design, produced there iconic Classic Legacy bags such as
coach Janice Legacy #9950,
coach Patricia Legacy #9951,
The Legacy of Coach Lula #9952,
and Trainer Helen Legacy #9953
There was also the City Legacy Classic, The Stewardess Legacy, and many others that were just as popular. His Legacy Classics were his most in-demand hits for decades. As Coach went through many changes over the years, trying different designs and materials, these bags were no longer in production and could only be found on the resale market. Unfortunately, these bags, along with most of his other designs, were heavily counterfeited on the counterfeit market.
The one thing that amazed everyone is how well these bags held up for decades thanks to the ‘glove tanned leather’. The quality of these bags is unlike any other Coach has ever produced. Many began to miss these iconic Legacy Classics.
Coach, trying to update itself from women who said that Coach was ‘the bag their mothers used’, began to produce other materials such as their ‘Jacquard Signature Cs collection’, and although these bags were a great success with the younger consumer, its long-time collectors craved the quality of its ‘Glove Tanned Leather’ bags. While they did keep a couple of them available, there were very few options and the trainer was losing his baseline collectors.
Finally, in 2006, for Coach’s 65th anniversary, the Legacy Classics made a comeback by popular demand. People rushed to stores looking for them and they could barely keep them in stock. While people were thrilled to have these Legacy bags available again, they noticed a difference from the classics that were once ‘Made in the USA’, between the newer versions now ‘Made in China’ and around the world. .
These newer versions were missing ‘something’ that no one can identify. Many believe it is because they are rarely made in the US, although some believe this is just a prejudiced fallacy. The bags are really fantastic, and to this day there are no other bags that, in my opinion, can compare to the Coach Glove tanned leather bags.
Personally, like many others, I prefer to go back to the resale market to find their original ‘made in the USA’ versions of these Legacy Classics. One of each color is all you need! They will never wear out and these classics will outlast any of us. I still have several from the 1970s that are in mint condition and many others as well, which is a true testament to the quality of Coach Glove’s tanned leather Legacy classics.
Be careful in your search for these bags, there are many copies and fakes out there! Whenever something is so popular for so many years, of course counterfeiters will reproduce it. However, fakes are NOT compared to the originals and their value is worthless, plus if you ever try to trade or sell the fakes you can get into big trouble as selling fakes is illegal.
Searching for these ‘Made in the USA’ Coach Legacy Classics can be very difficult to distinguish a real from a fake, so it’s best to use a professional Designer Bag Authentication Service, to ensure you’re getting an authentic Coach. . These same Legacy classics can still be found brand new, on sites like eBay or stores like TJ Max etc. and often at Coach Outlet stores. However, they are rarely found ‘made in the USA’, so the resale market is your best bet for finding these Legacy Classics if you insist on the US versions.
Today many designers also use the Glove tanned leather which originated from Coach and you can find them everywhere, however if you are like many of us who just want the ‘original’ the search can be fun. I hope you find your perfect Coach Legacy Classic and enjoy it as many of us have for generations. Simply put, they are the best of the best and I know you will love them.