FAQ

You Asked, We Answered

How do I place an order?

We're glad you asked! Please give us a call (802) 591-3886, email us at shepherdsflockvt@gmail.com or there are many "Contact Us" buttons on our website. Everything is made to order for you personally, so making contact with a real person is important to us and our customers.

Why don't you do online ordering?

Easy, to help us maintain a better level of service to our customers. We are T-I-N-Y compared to that mass of retailers out there so we can only handle a certain amount of business from our web site.


 We want to serve you well and that doesn't come about by over booking our production capabilities.

Do you accept returns?

We accept returns for exchange, on the expectation that the products have not been damaged in any way. However, we Do Not offer refunds, due to the value of the material we work with and how we make our products (by hand, with a sewing machine, for you specifically). 

What is Shearling?

The very basic answer to that question is the skin of a sheep or lamb that has been tanned with the wool left on the hide.
We are going to confuse you for a moment but stick with us as we try to be as factual as possible. "A" "shearling" from what we can gather, is a sheep that has been shorn one time. Since sheep are not shorn in their first year this would be a sheep (lamb) that is over a year old. 

Why is shearling so expensive?

Sheepskins are a global commodity, just like oil. However, they are also a by product of the meat industry so supply can be limited by a variety of factors. When the demand is high the price goes up; especially when supplies are low.

Are sheep killed in order to obtain their skins?

Sheep are raised primarily for food and shearling is a by-product of the food/meat industry.

To the best of our knowledge, only Persian Lamb or Broadtail Lamb is a "fur" (raised for the value of the skin) and we do not use either.

Chemical Free; Organic Tanned; Etc; Sheepskins

We get a lot of questions regarding organic tanning, chemical free tanning, etc. and we most certainly understand why people ask those questions. We are more than happy to answer them to the best of our ability. Tanning technology is constantly changing and, not being chemists ourselves, we simply do our best to give people the best and most honest answer we can.

There is no such thing as "chemical free tanning". Tanning is the process of taking an animal skin and creating a product that lasts, sometimes for generations. It is a chemical process regardless of how it is done. Therefore, there is no such thing as chemical free tanning. The only "chemical free tanning" would be drying the skin without salting. This does not meet the definition of tanning. In addition, as some are looking for "biodegradable", the object with tanning is to take a natural item that would degrade and prevent it from doing so. 


Organic tanning is most often understood by the consumer as a vegetable tanning process, It is important to note that how "green" the leather production is actually depends on a variety of factors, not just what the main tanning agent is. Yes, vegetable tanning, if natural and not synthetic, is a process that uses "chemicals" extracted from vegetable material. This is what the leach houses of tanneries in the past were all about, a place to leach out "chemicals" from plant material. However, often there may be other chemicals involved in processing the skin so finding a "pure" vegetable tanned leather is not really an easy task.

The vast majority of skins that we use are chrome tanned. We are careful in our sourcing with the majority of the skins coming from US growers tanned by a US Tanner (all regulated by US law in their handling of the animals, the slaughter process, and the tanning). The few other tanners we use are very reputable and that includes their supply chain as well. We do not do business with anyone outside of our long established supply chain, we don't care how "cheap" they are. The best promise we can give our customers is that we do our absolute best to make sure that what you receive from us is from an environmentally responsible and ethical supply chain.

What is the difference between a natural shearling sole and a crepe sole?

Our standard shearling sole is soft and flexible and can be resoled if (and when) you love a hole right through the bottom.


Our 5/16th inch thick crepe (a blend of Ethylene Vinyl Acetate "EVA" and Synthetic Butadiene Rubber) outsoles, standard on some items optional on others, are first cemented and then sewn to the slipper. They will not only out last most any leather sole on the market but will normally out last the upper. This is a flat sole, no thick, clunky, boot type sole. 

How do I care for my purchase?

Basic rules are quite simple and relate to many leather products in general. If the product happens to be worn in the rain or snow simply allow it to dry at room temperature. Never attempt to dry by a high heat source. Once the product is dry you can brush out most water spots with a soft bristle brush. Please store in a dry place as mildew can form and can never be completely removed. Never encase in plastic for storage, a paper bag or box is preferable. Moths will generally not bother the items unless you have real problems with moths anyway. If so, please store as you would a good wool sweater and think about calling someone who specializes in getting rid of the little critters.

How do I clean my purchase?

All of our products can be dry cleaned. Please choose a reputable leather dry cleaner.
If you are careful, you can also wash the products. Cool water and an extremely mild soap, air drying away from heat and sunshine works well. Bleach, hot water, drying on a woodstove, etc. will destroy the product.

Treat the items like you would a fine wool sweater. Note that sheepskin products, when washed, will not come out looking like new. The wool will retain any curl that has developed over time and, in fact, will likely curl up even more when washed and the suede will probably be discolored. They will just be cleaner than before. We also recommend only occasional washing. No matter how the product is used we believe constant washing will shorten the useable life span of the item.  

Sheepskin rugs can be washed either in a machine or by hand. Please note that we strongly suggest hand washing for the sake of your washing machine as well as the skin. They get pretty heavy when they are soaking wet.
Regardless of the method chosen do not use harsh detergents, Woolite®, bleach, or any of the popular enzyme cleaners. These will damage the skin and, in some cases, actually reverse the tanning process. Use only cool/luke warm water, maximum of about 100º F. Hot water will ruin the skin. Do not use fabric softener.

Note that we will not be held responsible for any damage that may occur from washing your product.

Can I wear my slippers outside?

You could but we don't recommend regular outside wear as we do not believe that sheepskin is a durable enough leather, especially in the snow and wet conditions.

Do you do wholesale?

Yes, we maintain a limited wholesale clientele. Contact should be made regarding such in the spring, not during the busy season when we are solidly booked already.

If you still haven’t found an answer to your question, reach out and we’ll get back to you ASAP.

 

1-802-591-3886

©2020 by Shepherd's Flock. Proudly created with Wix.com