INTERVIEW WITH KATHARINA CHRIST-SCHMID - the wearness journal
  • KATHARINA CHRIST-SCHMID - TALKING ABOUT SHEARLING

    Lammfelljacke in Natur von Werner Christ

    The family business WERNER CHRIST stands for high-quality leather and lambskin articles as well as ethically correct values and fair production. We talked to Katharina Christ-Schmid, who is the third generation to work for the company. 

    YOU HAVE JOINED THE COMPANY OF YOUR FAMILY. HAS IT ALWAYS BEEN YOUR WISH TO WORK IN THE FASHION INDUSTRY? WAS THERE SOMETHING THAT YOU WANTED TO CHANGE?
    For me it was clear from the beginning that I wanted to work with our core material "lambskin". This was literally "put into the cradle" for me and I am still in daily contact with it today. It is used in many areas, even outside of fashion (for example for pram footbags, bed inserts, home articles).
    The fashion industry itself, in my opinion, is a very hard and unfortunately not too "clean" industry. I see it as one of my tasks to let our company grow with a good feeling and conscience.

    Interview mit Katharina Werner-Schmid von Werner Christ, Leder und Lammfell, handmade - the wearness online-shop, journal

    Katharina Christ-Schmid

    LAMBSKIN IS A NATURAL PRODUCT. HOW SUSTAINABLE IS LAMBSKIN? FIRST OF ALL: LAMBSKIN IS LEATHER, ONLY WITH WOOL/HAIR (WITH LEATHER THE HAIRS ARE REMOVED BY CHEMICAL PROCESSES DURING TANNING)
    Lambskin or lamb leather was already used in the Stone Age to protect itself from wind and weather. It is a very durable and sustainable material. A good and high-quality tanning contributes a large part to the quality difference. In addition, the lambskin and leather also decompose after a few years, in contrast to the hip "fake fur" made of poly fibres.

    HOW DO YOU CHOOSE YOUR LEATHER? WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO LOOK OUT FOR WHEN CHOOSING LEATHER / LAMBSKIN?
    Our specialists travel around the world looking for high quality leather and hides. Depending on which goods and product you want to make out of the raw material, you have to decide in which region of the world they are bred, whether they are animals that are kept in the barn or free on the pasture. These and many other factors determine the density of the wool, the quality of the leather, etc.

    Of course, tanning is also very important, but as we do this in our own tannery, we are sure that our quality standards are met.


    IN ORDER TO GUARANTEE THE LONGEVITY OF YOUR PRODUCTS AND TO PROTECT THEM FROM WETNESS AND DIRT, A C3 LONG-TERM IMPREGNATION HAS BEEN DEVELOPED. HOW EXACTLY DOES THIS PROCESS WORK AND WHAT IS SO SPECIAL ABOUT IT?
    Through the impregnation with our own developed C3, a very, very thin protective film of special resins is applied to the leather. The special thing about our impregnation is that the natural wearing properties of the material as well as the soft feel are still retained.

    Werner Christ Manufaktur

    During the manufacturing process.


    IN CONNECTION WITH SUSTAINABILITY, YOU ALSO HAVE TO LOOK AT THE QUESTION OF THE PRODUCTION LOCATION/CONDITIONS. WHAT IS THE ADVANTAGE OF THE PRODUCTION SITES IN URUGUAY AND THE PHILIPPINES? HOW DO YOU GUARANTEE FAIR WORKING CONDITIONS ON SITE?
    More than 30 years ago we decided to establish our own tannery in Uruguay. One of the main reasons was the raw material available on site. (Uruguay has today still four times as much sheep as inhabitants).
    In the 90s we made the decision to expand our production and due to the duty-free zone, the craftsmanship and the relatively low costs we decided to go to the Philippines and set up our own clothing factory there. Today we employ about 300 people there.

    Like this we can guarantee that all our employees are well paid, work in exemplary conditions and are socially insured - our products are 100% fair manufactured.

    Gerberei von Werner Christ

    View on the tannery and the Toryal Lake


    ARE THERE ANY ALTERNATIVE LEATHER OPTIONS? WHAT IS THE PROBLEM WITH LEATHER REPLACEMENT MATERIALS/ ARTIFICIAL FUR?
    There are certainly alternatives that achieve the same optical look as leather/lambskin, but the natural good qualities cannot be imitated (at least until today).

    WHICH JACKET IS YOUR FAVOURITE FROM THE CURRENT COLLECTION?
    I love Pippa and like to wear it myself. It is light and keeps me warm at the same time, it is sophisticated and enhances every outfit. She is also durable and timeless.

    AND DO YOU HAVE A TIP FOR THE LEATHER CARE FOR US? It is important that leather is not too strongly exposed to the sun/light (over long periods of time on the back seat in the car) otherwise it can happen that the color changes. Moreover, it is good if you store the lambskin coat for the summer months dry and as cool as possible. If the air is too dry and warm, the leather will become soft and supple.

    SHOP OUR SELECTION OF WERNER CHRIST HERE

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