The Omersa Collection is a range of unique leather animal footstools and desk top accessories. The first leather pig was made in 1927 and today we have a range of over 40 animals each in a variety of sizes.
The product is designed and made at our workshop in Coningsby, Lincolnshire, England. We use the same methods of production today as originally employed and the same type of home grown tools!
We typically work to a 5-6 week lead time as our animals are hand made to order. The production process is quite lengthy and each stage cannot be rushed.
We use top quality full grain cowhide leather sourced and tanned specifically for our purposes. We work very closely with our Lincolnshire based leather supplier to ensure the leather is fit for our purpose.
The leather is “unfinished” which means it has not been spray painted or coated with an acrylic finish; this makes it more supple to work with.
The animals are mainly used as decorative items for the home. However, as there is a strong internal metal frame, the larger pieces can be used as footstools.
These size classifications have developed over the years!
As a guide:
- The “medium” and “standard” sized pieces are best suited as footstools
- The “large” and “medium” sizes can also be used as an occasional seat
- The “small” and “miniature” sizes are for home decorative purposes/doorstops
And then there is of course our magnificent “super king” rhinoceros which seats the whole family!! This is a very robust piece.
This is because all of our animals are handmade. As each piece of leather responds differently to this hand crafting process no two animals are ever alike and hence the reason why animals cut from the same pattern template can differ quite significantly in shape and size. Each piece is truly unique and this adds to their charm and personality!
Here again each hide is different in the way it reacts to the stain, which is applied by hand, thereby obtaining different finishes.
Keep you animal away from direct sunlight as this will cause the colour to fade. Please also keep water/liquid away from the animal as these can cause marks. Leather does not like heat either so do not keep too near a sitting room fire or radiator.
We highly recommend the regular use of NIKWAX Waterproofing Wax. This product keeps the leather in excellent condition and waterproofs against water damage. It can be purchased through our On Line shop.
We make the animals to last a long time; we want them to be a part of your family. We often have elderly animals returned for new ears or tails, a re-stain and polish, in readiness for the next generation.
Check out our Care Tips to keep your animal in good condition.
They are ideal as wedding and special anniversary presents. They have a particular appeal for men which makes a difficult present easy. Children, of course, love to play on them and they become a very special part of childhood. Many of our customers remember playing on them whilst visiting a relative as a child and at last purchase one of their own.
Yes! Our owners love to give their animal a name. “Cornelius the Elephant” – “Ronald the Rhinoceros” – “Babe the Pig” – “Henrietta the Hippo” – “Shona the Sheep”
You are welcome to update your Ownership Record held on the Owners Database with the name(s) you have given your animals.
Many of our customers have quite a collection and have started family traditions of gifting an animal at family weddings and other significant occasions.
Our older animals have become increasingly sought after particularly older pieces that carry the “Liberty of London” stamp. They can be found in house sales, on auction sites, and at antique dealers all over the world.
A word of warning: sellers on the internet tend to describe any animal that is made from leather as “Omersa for Abercrombie and Fitch” or similar. MANY of the items so described have NOT been made by Omersa. You are welcome to contact us if you have any queries in this regard.
Pack your animal carefully in a box and send it to us at the postal address given under contacts.
Please include a letter with your name, address, and contact telephone number and an idea of what you would like to have done to your animal.
We will contact you to confirm what we are able to do and a quote for the work. You can contact us before sending to get an idea of the cost of repair but please note that this will only be an estimate – it is often difficult to tell until we see the animal. No work will take place until approval is given and please allow 6-8 weeks for the work to be done.
After the settlement of the account, we will return the animal to you!
The cost of a basic re stain and wax polish varies between £50 – £100 + VAT depending upon the size of the animal. This cost EXCLUDES the cost of postage.
Should your animal require more extensive repairs, it is very helpful if you can send through photos of the damaged areas. We will assess what work is needed/possible and provide a quote by email.
Alternatively, you can purchase materials to re-stain and wax polish your animal with our care products.
To keep your animal in the best of condition, may we suggest the following tips:
Keep your animal out of direct sunlight and or direct heat. The sunlight will fade the stain and heat will dry out the leather and cause it to become brittle.
Keep your animal dry and away from water. We use a water-soluble stain on our animals and this can be damaged by direct contact with water.
Dust and wax your animal on a regular basis. The animal should be polished with good quality wax polish. DO NOT USE any spray or liquid polish. These types of polish contain chemicals, which damage the water-soluble stain. We use “Nikwax Waterproofing Wax” which can be purchased from our Online shop or hiking shops. The wax is used for waterproofing walking boots etc.
Any similar product will do. In the early life of your animal apply wax monthly – this will help seal in the stain and minimize water damage. Warm the wax slightly so it is soft and apply to the animal with a soft cloth. Leave to dry and buff up to a shine. Thereafter, apply wax on occasion to keep the leather in good condition
PREPARATION FOR STAINING
Note: the stain supplied is a water based, permanent stain. Spillages can be mopped up with warm water and a cloth but colour damage cannot be removed easily.
- Cover a flat service with several layers of newspaper.
- Wear household gloves to protect hands against stain and an apron to protect clothing.
- Work in a well ventilated room with good lighting.
- Obtain sponge/piece of old cotton T shirt material to apply stain.
- Dispense a small amount of stain in to a container large enough for you to dip your sponge/cloth in to.
APPLICATION OF STAIN
- Place your animal on the flat service covered with newspaper.
- Turn him onto his back.
- Dip sponge/cloth into stain solution and squeeze out any excess stain.
- Move sponge over surface of leather using SMALL overlapping CIRCULAR movements, starting with the underbelly and inside of legs.
- DO NOT apply the stain using long wiping movements as this does not give a nice finish.
- Complete sides of body overlapping the stain as you apply it, finishing off with the head.
- Leave animal overnight to dry off.
APPLICATION OF NIKWAX
Nikwax is a water based wax that is absorbed into the leather (as opposed to sitting on the top of the leather). It is used to waterproof leather and provide protection from drying out.
It is GREAT for your keeping your animal in good condition.
- Apply Nikwax in the same manner as the stain, using a fresh sponge/piece of cloth. Work in small circular movements. The Nikwax may “lift off” some of the stain. This is not unexpected and gives the “antique effect” finish that we look for.
- Leave to dry (say an hour). Then buff up to a shine with a soft cloth.Re-apply Nikwax from time to time to keep your animal in good condition and to improve its colour fastness
- Thread up long needle with string provided and pass needle through punched hole on stem of eye.
- Undo string from needle. Pass both ends of string through eye of needle.
- Push needle through right hand eye hole and come out through opposite eye hole.
- Pull on string to tighten the eye into eye hole gently pushing leather stem on back of eye into hole with small screwdriver.
- De thread needle on opposite side.
- Attach one end of string to second eye (through punched hole on stem). Tie string to eye stem leaving a tail end of approx 2 inches.
- Pull on string not attached to 2nd eye. This action will pull 2nd eye into place in the eye hole. Pull tightly and push in leather stem as in 4. above
- Once both eyes are firmly in place, tie off loose end of string against 2”tail end of the first piece. Trim ends (leaving approx 2 inches) and push excess string with a small screwdriver gently in to back of eye hole.
NOTE: if the eyes have worked their way loose and have not actually fallen out, you need to find the 2 ends of string attached to the eye on the LHS (facing the animal). It is most likely the knot has worked its way loose. You simply need to find the ends of string and pull on them to bring the eyes back in to position.
NOTE: if do not have a long needle, suggested options are – a BBQ meat skewer, piece of stiff wire with end bent over (to make the eye), perhaps a knitting needle if can tie string around one end without it coming off!