A family affair

Representing the second generation at the helm of the School of Leather of Florence, Tommaso also represents the best of Florence’s ancient leather working traditions, with an injection of a new contemporary sense of style which is also extremely popular abroad. As the School’s director, Tommaso chose to foster the structure’s didactic calling, without abandoning production of “fashion” goods of absolute excellence, often customised.

The idea behind the School of Leather

The school was founded in 1950 to teach a trade to the orphans of World War II. The school is currently a centre which conserves and renews the culture of leatherworking artisanship. For some strange reason, foreigners display a much greater interest in the school than Italians.

The international successes of the School

The old Santa Croce religious house is, in itself a magic location. Add to this the unique qualities of the school’s products. This is why some of the most notable personages worldwide − among whom celebrities, aristocrats, American presidents, top film directors and many others − come to our centre.

Made in Italy needs the energy of the young.

Without the work put in by youngsters to flesh out and regenerate this philosophy of Made in Italy, our commitment would quite simply have withered away. Foreigners increasingly consider it a real honour to have a chance to learn how to make an object which will endure over time. However, Italians have yet to discover the ‘glamour’ of artisanship.


Passion, as the driver of a handicraft.

Stefano has been working with the School of Leather for ten years. He’s more than “just” an internationally renowned craftsman. You might call him a philosopher, who teaches to the young the deeper meaning of 100% craftsmanship.

Craftspeople always see themselves as apprentices for life. Working for artisans is not something you do for a number of hours per day and then just go home. If you work for us, you express your own life, creativeness and ideas.

Learning a handicraft trade, Stefano tells us, is not about techniques. It’s a question of teaching your hands to do what your mind’s thinking.

Throughout his Samsung Maestros Academy course, Stefano Parrini will mix his technical lessons with cultural reflections, which are an equally fundamental part of an art which is as prestigious as it is ancient.



In seven lessons, Stefano shall explain the art of creating a leather bag − with attention paid to each and every detail, in accordance with the most noble traditions of Florentine craftsmanship.

Find out more

check out
the programme

the programme

  • 16_04_2014 16_04_2014
  • 23_04_2014 23_04_2014
  • 07_05_2014 07_05_2014
  • 14_05_2014 14_05_2014
  • 21_05_2014 21_05_2014
  • 28_05_2014 28_05_2014
  • 04_06_2014 04_06_2014

Lesson n° 1

The tools of the trade. Tools for cutting, for finishing edges and for preparing the seams. All the tools a true Maestro of leather requires.

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Lesson n° 2

Types of leather. Types of tanning, and their importance for the later work stages. How to choose the right kind of leather and the right piece you’ll need for the various kinds of products.

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Lesson n° 3

From idea to pattern. How to turn inspiration into a set of measurement specifications. Creating and cutting the paper pattern.

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Lesson n° 4

How to select leather and cut it according to the paper pattern. Finishing each cut piece. All you need to know to protect and cherish your leather.

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Lesson n° 5

Dyeing leather. All you need to know to get a uniform colour while also conserving the natural flaws of the leather. Methods for polishing and finishing the edges.

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Lesson n° 6

Bag accessories. Finishing the straps and clasps and stitching them onto the body of the bag. What you must bear in mind before you finally assemble the bag.

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Lesson n° 7

Assembling bags. Stitching the dyed rib. Theory and practice. Using grip and awls. Blocking the starting and final point and adding the finishing touches.

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Stefano Parrini

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