15 Benjamins, 300 fivers, 1,500 smackeroos!
$1500 – a pile of cash, a wad of dough, a stack of moolah, with which I didn’t want to part.
. . . and the “leather expert” I called for a quote to restore my suite of armchair, ottoman, and sofa did.
Our phone conversation went something like this.
Leather Expert: Oh, yes I see in the photos you sent that the cushions sag, the leather’s close to cracking, and the color’s faded.
Me: (Being a bit saggy, cracked, and faded myself I felt defensive.) It’s an old couch, but there are no holes. (That had to count for something.)
LE: How old?
Me: (Calculating as a mom) Jack was a Kindergartener when I bought it, and he’s 31 now, so about 26 years.
LE: (Hesitating) It might be saved. I’ll send you a quote.
. . . and she did. $1500 for starters with added expense for color restoration!
Before and after photos, testimonials, and a resume claiming advanced professional training to use a secret formula leather conditioner supported the $1500 charge.
I figured for $1500 I could enroll in advanced professional training and gain access to the secret formula myself . . . or I could Google it.
A dozen articles and a handful of YouTube videos later I identified Blackrock Leather N Rich as A secret formula if not THE secret formula. I ordered five jars at ten bucks a pop. If it worked I was $1450 ahead.
Claiming to “enhance all leather tones, and easy to use” I smeared the leather with the mudlike lotion, the ottoman slurped the “genuine carnauba wax” faster than me downing a Margarita on a Friday night.
Although the leather color returned somewhat, it wasn’t good enough. I applied a second coat. A slightly darker shade appeared. That was better.
As per directions, I wiped the surface with a paper towel. The surface felt sticky.
I wiped the surface more vigorously. A mustard tinted residue stained the towel. It still felt sticky.
Then I read ALL of the directions, not only skimming the part needed to begin.
“Use sparingly” and “small amount” appeared several times in the two paragraph instructions.
A roll of paper towels and 45 minutes later the stickiness abated.
What would happen when someone sat on the refurbished cushion? Would their clothes stain? To test it, I slipped on white shorts and slid my butt across the newly moisturized leather several times. With an unstained seat of my pants the ottoman not only passed the “sitting test,” but also sported a buffed shine.
Recognizing a “close call” I scaled back to the one-application directions and finished the armchair.
After a couple hours I decreed the 26-year-old sofa “good enough” and relearned that life was less complicated if I used that measure more often.