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  • Ostrich leathers by Ray

what is Skins Grades

Ostrich Skin is One if the most precious and luxury look types of leather in different grades


Grade A free of any default

The Standards for Ostrich Leather Grading.

Under the ostrich Grading system used by the industry in South Africa, the ostrich leathers are classified according to their size and grading. The aim of grading standard is to stipulate a norm for different grades of Ostrich leather.

Grading depends upon the number of quarters in which defects can be found within the central “Diamond “area.  A “DEFECT” can be a Hole or cuts through the skin, a Scratch caused by sharp objects, a Loose Scab, a healed wound or bacterial damage.

The CROWN is the area with quills, except in the neck area down to the wing folds as well as the flank areas. For grading purposes the crown is divided into four quarters as displayed on the ostrich skin diagram. The lines dividing the crown area into the four quarters will be 25mm wide. The vertical line will stretch from the base of the neck between the wing folds, down to the bottom of the Crown. The horizontal line will stretch between the widest quill markings on either side of the crown area.



Grade One:

A defect in one of the quarters as long as it is not larger than

approximately 40 mm x 40 mm.

At least three quarters must be free from defects.

A few less visible scars are allowed as long as they are not in crown area.

Defects on the cutting lines do not affect the grade.

Grade One skins are most suitable for large sized projects like car interiors, motor cycle seats, boots, shoes, handbags, luggage, saddles, sofas & many more.


Grade Two:

One defect in any two adjacent quarters, if it is not larger than 80 mm in diameter.

Two defects in any two adjacent quarters, if both are not larger than 40 mm in diameter.  

At least half the skin must be free from any defects.

Two healed wounds not larger than the distance between three quills are allowed on the crown area.

Visible defects outside the crown area are allowed and will not affect the grading.

Grade Two skins are suitable for mid-sized Ostrich leather accessories like shoes, gloves, handbags, wallets & more.




Grade Three:

At least one quarter must be free from defects.

Ostrich skins have three to six holes and /or bruising within the main diamond area. One defect in any one of three quarters, if it is not larger than 120 mm in diameter. This defect may also affect all three quarters.

Two defects in any of three quarters if one is not larger than 80 mm in diameter and one is not larger than 40 mm in diameter.

Three defects in any of three quarters, if all of the area not larger than 4 mm in diameter individually.

A number of visible defects outside the crown area will be allowed.

Grade three skins are suitable for smaller sized ostrich leather accessories like Phone cases, Card Holders, Wallets, watch bands, etc.….



Grade Four:

Ostrich skins have many holes imperfections and/or bruising within the main diamond area. Grade four skins are suitable for piecework which does not require large areas of perfect hide. Like small craft work leather projects.







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