Process: Shinola Leather

While modern-day Shinola is best known for its watches, the company actually has a longer history with leather, having made shoe polish decades ago. Now the company is getting to know this lasting material once again. Using Horween leather tanned in Chicago, Shinola designs all their leather goods on site, and actually makes their own watch straps in a new 12,000-square-foot factory in the Argonaut building. In addition to bringing in a Louis Vuitton veteran to help train the 50+ new employees in the many steps it takes to create a single quality band, they're also looking to expand in the near future, allowing them to craft everything from briefcases and duffles to wallets, luggage tags, and even leather iPhone cases at the same place as their watches, right in downtown Detroit.

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