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Desert Palms Emu Ranch -
Unique & Exotic Leather Goods
by Myra Charleston
Man has known for thousands
of years how to dress the hides of animals to preserve them and make them soft
and flexible. Cave men discovered the skins of animals they killed could
be preserved and made into foot coverings and clothing. Egyptians made leather
so well that specimens over 3,000 years old have been found almost perfectly
This bit of trivia was
the furthest thing from Deb Henson's mind as she worked her booth of emu
products that fateful day at the Chandler Ostrich Festival. "A gentleman came up to me
and inquired about emu leather goods. He had a bag with him of exotic
leather goods that he had made and wanted to know if he could make some emu
leather goods for me." At this time emu skins were just
being thrown away. Intrigued, she set about learning what it would
take to start a leather products company.
As with any new business, it
takes time, money and effort to get going. Emu hides are especially scarce due
to the fact that processors either do not know how to remove the hide properly
or do not care whether it is removed properly or not. They want to work
fast and being careful slows them down. With the help of the leather-craftsman,
and a lot of ruined hides, Deb perfected a technique that removes the hides
without any fat being left on, and no ripping or tearing.
The next challenge was to
find a tanner. Deb called all over the country, even into Mexico, trying to find
tanners who knew how to tan an emu hide, or that expressed a desire to try.
"I had several large tanneries tell me that the emu hide is worthless and
they wouldn't waste their time." Deb recalled, "Now,
I had seen emu leather before, and it is beautiful leather, so I knew better
than that. I think most of the tanneries that had that attitude spoke out of
"Once I finally received
some quality tanned emu hides, then it was on to the next phase of product
development. I had the leather craftsman make some products for my approval.
After some design modifications, we came up with a line of emu leather goods
that I was proud of."
Hundred's of customers agree.
Deb's biggest seller is the key ring, after that is the men's bi-fold wallet.
"Most of my customers are
women shopping for themselves or for gifts."
The most recent addition to the
leather goods inventory offered by Desert Palms is the tri-fold wallet. Although
a recent addition, it is already rivaling the bi-fold sales. The unique
quality of emu leather is its subtle quill marks that cover the entire hide.
Every item of Henson's emu leather products has the distinctive quill pattern
that is only found in emu leather. Emu leather is soft, yet durable. It is
especially suitable for clothing and accessories. It is truly an exotic leather
that is unique from any other.
Desert Palms Emu Ranch
Leather Goods are available through
mail order at
or you may email Deb at Debemu@aol.com
For more information, call