A second skin for your hands

Oct 02, 2012

Hand sewn gloves 

Long-renowned as home to France’s major gloves artisan houses, the town of Millau is also well-known as a key centre of leatherworking, boasting unparalleled regional craftsmanship and raw materials produced by the tanneries of the Tarn region and Aveyron département. These workshops have been working and trading in the region since the Middle Ages, supported by the Tarn river and its tributaries.

Two centuries ago, the glove-making industry employed around 12,000 people, including almost the entire population of the town and the surrounding area. Today, only a handful of major leather workshops and a few other small independent retailers have withstood the pressure of increasing globalisation to relocate. As late as 1980, Millau still boasted eighty glove manufacturers, providing 6000 local jobs. Since then, however, the industry has shrunk dramatically. The remaining businesses have all made the decision to favour high quality and French savoir-faire rather than outsource and export their production overseas to China or the Philippines.

The Millau glove is a guarantee of quality. It is hand-made, crafted using a series of traditional techniques, from the initial trimming of the hide to the final polishing of the product, via the burnishing, the stretching of the hide and the stitching. The finished product is the result of a series of meticulous leatherworking techniques passed down through generations of craftsmen over course of many centuries.

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