How to Fix Scratched Leather

March 03, 2018

I love finding a good deal. The hunt is half the fun. One rainy afternoon, I grabbed an umbrella and walked down the street to the thrift store we used to live near. When I am thrift shopping, I never anticipate that I will find something good. Most of the time I don't buy anything. But this time, I struck gold.

The most beautiful chocolate brown leather armchair with brass nailhead trim sat in the back corner of the store. It was perfect. Except for a bunch of scratches on the arms. I walked away. And then I walked back. How bad were the scratches? Could I cover them with a throw pillow? Could I fix them? I had too many doubts. I left the store. As soon as I got home, I knew I had made a bad decision. I bolted back down the street to find a couple looking at the chair. I marched past them, grabbed the tag off the chair's arm, and went to the counter to purchase my lucky find.

After convincing my husband to help me get the chair home, I took a good look at the damage. It wasn't good. Check out the picture below. It looks like the chair's past owner maybe had a cat.

A couple of Google searches later, I had a solution. I bought brown Kiwi shoe polish. It doesn't smell great, but it does a great job disguising scratches. Using an old t-shirt that I cut into small squares, I buffed the shoe polish into the leather.

To my happiness (and surprise) the shoe polish concealed most of the scratches. I continued to apply the polish and buff the leather until the scratches darkened and appeared to smooth out. I was very pleased with the result. The pictures below are from the same arm as the pictures above. What a change!

This chair has been great to us. It now resides in the corner of my home office, and is one of my favorite places to curl up with a cup of coffee and a book.

Right now I'm reading Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert, and I'm really enjoying it! If you are a creative mind in need of a creative outlet, I strongly recommend it. 

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Kiwi shoe polish //
Personalized coffee mug //
Big Magic by Elizabeth Gilbert //

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