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"Our Passion": Creating the perfect Patina"

What is a patina?

Historically, a patina is described as a green or brown film on the surface of bronze or similar metals, normally produced by oxidation over time; a gloss or sheen produced naturally by age.

However, the term is now used to describe what has become the quite popular trend of manually creating lustrous colors on shoes and other leather products. I began creating patinas on my footwear to give them an extra bit of uniqueness, a touch of my own individuality. I was attracted to “colors” because I truly believe they are connected to energy and can significantly affect one’s state of mind.

How are patinas created?

Creating the perfect patina can be a craft unto itself and requires time, patience and repeated experimentation to perfect. At RONDONOVAN, we mastered a five (5) step process consistent with those followed by other great artisans.

First, we determine the original process used in the tanning of the leather. While each has its advantages and disadvantages, different tanning processes may require slight adjustments to our patina process. For example, “chromed” leathers often react quite differently than do “vegetable” leathers.

Second, having determined which type of leather we are working with, we chose the appropriate process to carefully and painstakingly clean the leather to be “patinaed”. Sometimes this requires the “stripping” away of old wax and polish that has accumulated and is done using products that least harm or dry out the leather.

Third, once we have restored our leather to the most natural state possible, we now have a perfect canvas on which to begin our hand-staining process. The colors used can range from simple singular colors to complex combinations and allow us to reflect and express each client’s unique individuality. Through somewhat of a trial and error process, the various colors are mixed to find the perfect shades. This traditional process is done manually and involves the use of brushes, pieces of old cloths and/or sponges.


Fourth, after the desired color has been achieved, the leather is moisturized with cremes and polishes to restore its suppleness. Giving leather time to rest between each step is also very important.


Fifth and finally, there is the creation of the ultimate high-gloss shine. This is achieved through a time-honored process using a unique combination of wax polishes, water and cotton clothes. This is what brings out the brilliancy of the colors and gives depth to the patina.

To acquire our patinaed products or to simply get more information, please contact us by email at or by telephone at +1.646.232.5618.

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