Wonderful patinated dark brown leather Norfolk hide attaché case, circa 1920. With original black Rexine lining to the interior. The front lip of the case is stamped with the patent number and 'Warranted Solid Leather’. The case is initialed W.M.D. under the handle.
Dimensions: 47 cm/18½ inches (length) x 31.5 cm/12½ inches (depth) x 11 cm/4⅜ inches (height).
Norfolk hide is one of the best-kept secrets harboured by collectors and dealers in fine luggage, and is highly prized. It is possibly the most unusual process in the manufacture of leather goods, which results in an entirely distinctive moulded finish. The process makes the leather stronger and more rigid, giving it a visual and tactile density more normally associated with wood and a real depth of patination. It also appears unusually free of structural seams and stitching, the parts are all of one piece, with no apparent joins. Interestingly, Norfolk hide takes its name from the fact that items were manufactured in Norfolk Street, Sheffield - and not, as one might assume, in the county of Norfolk.