Frau Leman's Story


My name is Stephanie and I am Frau Leman. 
Let me tell you how my journey into leather crafting began and where it has lead me!

Becoming a leather artisan saved my life

After school, I started studying English and French, but quickly noticed that it was not for me. However, suffering from depression, I was not able to take a big decision of leaving university. My fear of disappointing my family for dropping out was too strong. I began therapy and managed to finish school, but knew that something had to change drastically. 

I took up sewing as a hobby during my time at university and it was so much fun and even if I made every imaginable mistake, creating with my hands gave me infinite satisfaction. At one point, I bought leather scraps and experimented with them. It was clear, I wanted to dive deeper into this amazing material. I had found a new purpose.

Restoring leather goods, restoring my sanity

I found an internship at Zebra Lederreparaturen in Berlin Mitte. My training there took roughly 4 years, with two years of official training and two years consisting of an initial internship and working there along master craftswomen Juliane and two colleagues. I learned how to repair and restore leather goods and to make unique pieces, bags or wallets. This work elated (and still elates) me - I became good at it and had my own special things that I knew to do particularly well. I loved being surrounded by talented craftswomen. Repairing also meant to hear many stories about bags and we were always happy to make something someone cared for usable again. 

From three months to maybe forever or from Berlin to Florence

After obtaining my professional bag maker's degree, I wanted to expand my horizon and decided to look for an internship in Florence, one of the epicenters of leather craft in Europe, and maybe the world. 
After more than a year working in a family-run workshop, I thought I was ready to start my own business. A couple of months went into some rough planning, but before having a concept ready, I found a small space in Santo Spirito and went for it! After 4 years there, it seemed time for a change, and now my workshop is in Via dei Serragli 61R. More space, more charme, a busier street. 

Where will Frau Leman go?

That is where I am - in a relatively new space, 5 years after founding my brand, with a toddler and too little time on my hand. I am happy about everything, except for the lack of time, but it will be alright. 
In the future, Frau Leman bespoke leather goods will become more exclusive. Slots for personalised bags will therefore be limited. In order to make the best possible bag for you, I want to learn new techniques and improve my skills. I want to dedicate the right amount of time to each and every creation. Another goal is to have a selection of products available in the online shop and in the workshop, if you cannot or do not want to go for a bespoke item - I also want to eliminate these “sold out” buttons.
And who knows? Maybe there will even be workshops, during which you can learn the basics of leather work!

leatherwork tools

How your bag is made

From the designs to choosing leather and hardware to create your bag, wallet, belt or other desired item, everything is done in Frau Leman's tiny florentine workshop. 
Hand tools, a sewing machine and two hands are put to use for creating your dream bag. 

Most items are made from Italian leather, sourced from Tuscan tanneries. Depending on the item's purpose and the customer's preferences, vegetable or mineral tanned leather is used.


As a small business, sustainability is a necessity in order to be profitable, but also for ethical reasons.

For an artisanal company like Frau Leman, longevity is very important. Locally crafted leather goods made to last avoid waste, and all of Frau Leman's creations are repairable, should the teeth of time bite down too hard.

Frau Leman purchases most leather from stockists who sell left over leather from large-scale orders. This surplus is created by larger brands ordering too much or tanneries selling less than anticipated of certain articles. Frau Leman also sources “scraps” from Italian leather factories, which are often entire leather hides with only one piece cut from it, or discarded for small blemishes. This way, nothing new has to be produced. 

Our aim is to produce as many items as possible "to order", which means that you as a customer come to Frau Leman and together, we adapt an existing design or create a new one. This way, Frau Leman is able to avoid overproduction and efforts to manage inventory. 

We favour locally manufactured or sold leather, fabric, hardware and other components necessary for running a leather workshop.