High-Quality, Durable Rugs Made in the USA with Obsessive Attention to Detail & FREE Shipping!

How to Tan Your Own Cow Hide For Rug

If you want to make your own cowhide rug, you may be wondering how to tan it yourself. In this article, we’ll talk about natural tanning methods, chrome tanning, and lard and flour tanning. Depending on the climate, tanning a hide can take up to a week. Whether you decide to go this route is a personal choice. In any case, the process will be very rewarding!

Natural tanning

There are several ways to prepare cowhide for rug-making. The best way to preserve it is to salt it and freeze it before skinning it. While refrigeration is not always an option, salt is one method that is often used. Some sources suggest that plenty of salt is needed to cure the hide while others recommend not salting it at all. The salting process can be wet or dry. It all depends on the type of hiding.

Vegetable tanning

Vegetable-tanned cowhides are considerably more expensive than mainstream hides, largely due to the time and skill required to produce the finished product. The process is more than 8,000 years old and is considerably slower than chemical tanning. Because it is a traditional method, only a few facilities still produce vegetable-tanned cowhides. They require expert artisans and are incredibly expensive, so you can see why vegetable-tanned cowhide is the preferred choice for rug-making.

Chrome tanning

There are two types of tanning for cowhide rugs: vegetable and chrome. Vegetable tanning involves the use of tannic acid extracted from tree bark, which takes six months and is much less harmful to the environment. Chrome tanning is quicker but is also more damaging to the environment. Cowhide for rugs is considered the best option for a budget-conscious buyer. Here is how the process works.

Lard and flour tanning

Traditionally, the hides of animals are salted or frozen. Without refrigeration, a method that involves the addition of salt seems like the only option. However, there are also contradictory opinions regarding the use of salt. Some sources recommend liberal salting, while others warn against it because it will destroy the hide. Regardless of the method, you should make sure that the hide is thoroughly saturated before rubbing it.

Bark tanning

When you decide to create a rug out of cowhide, you may be wondering how to tan the hide for the final product. While cowhide is available in many countries, you’ll notice that not all types are created equally. Different regions tan their hides differently, resulting in variations in color, size, texture, and softness. Quality cowhide is usually more expensive, but you’ll find that it lasts much longer than cheaper types. First, gather a few skins from the meat works and determine the size of the hide you want.

luxury cowhide rugs

No products in the cart.