Article: The incredible characteristics and history of cork
The incredible characteristics and history of cork
What's cork leather like?
Cork is made up of small, strong, water-tight air cells, which resemble honeycomb under a microscope. It is:
- Smooth to the touch
- Abrasion, stain, water and fire resistant
- Elastic and flexible
- Long lasting
Cork has a beautiful natural texture, which adds character to our bags. It’s easy to clean - most stains come off easily with water and a touch of dish washing detergent.
Cork has been valued throughout history for its resilience and longevity
Fossils show that cork oak trees have existed for millions of years, even surviving the ice age due to their protective bark. Cork has been utilised by humans since ancient times, harvested and processed for everything from shoe soles, to insulation, to military equipment, to wine stoppers. Cork has been used in aerospace equipment since the beginning of space exploration, and is used by NASA today for thermal protection in rocket boosters.
In 2010, divers found hundreds of bottles of champagne in an 1800s shipwreck in the Baltic Sea. After 200 years on the bottom of the ocean, the bubbly was still perfectly preserved - a testament to the amazing strength and water resistance of the cork stoppers!
Read more about the environmental and community benefits of cork harvesting here.