Last Updated on 3 years by Tam Le Van
Hoi An’s leather goods have the fair quality of leather/workmanship to two largest metropolitans-Hanoi&Ho Chi Minh City. It’s telling us why a huge number of tourists want to own some items when travel “the lantern city’. There are three kings within all leather goods in Hoi An: bag, shoes, and jacket. Moreover, plentiful stores also develope custom-made services in the partnership with local craftmans whose talent is outstanding all over the country.
Beside that, leather workshops themselves have the positions on list of the best things to do in Hoi An. They give to participants new skills, new knowledge plus new opportunity in the new field. Both of Zen Leather and Blue Lotus Leather workshops are well-deserved to take part in, basing on their own advantages. In this article, HOI AN LIFE outline a comprehensive picture about leather goods and leather workshops in Hoi An.
Top leather goods in Hoi An
In reality, cow and buffalo leather bags are the most sought-after leather goods in Hoi An above all. According to local&expat, there are two popular spots to purchase them: the Cloth market for good deals and reputable stores for better quality.
Leather bag in Hoi An central market
Note: Hoi An central market includes two distinct areas. One area functions as ‘food and kitchen ware market’ in the corner of Nguyen Hue-Tran Phu streets. Another is for fashion under the name of ‘Hoi An fabric market’ or ‘Hoi An cloth market’.
Not only about the fabric, ready-made clothes, souvenirs and gifts, Hoi An central market also is a fertile oasis of leather bags. Relative flentiful in design, level of quality, costing as well as on display within not-spacious kiosks. Local mans and womans commonly here keep the leather source in secret, little pushy. Read our leather buying guide to pick right things to bring back home.
On the other hand, it is the well-fitted place for holiday makers who are willing to buy bags in a more reasonable price. Compare to street-front stores throughout the Old town, you have opportunities to strike the bargain here.
What are the best leather bag shops in Hoi An?
Friendly Leather Bags, Da Bao Real Leather, Blue Lotus Leather or Buffalo Leather Shop has its own outstanding features what make it becomes top leather bag shops in town. There is really rare to see people leaving with the disappointing at these places. Walk on the same way, all does not use low-quality leathers sourced from nearby China plus non-reliable domestic suppliers. Leather grade, design and price are varied, well-suited to any specifications. Their standard of workmanship also is very impressive due to masterly skills and professionalism of craftmans.
Besides, shops have the great location that everyone easily finds. In particular, Friendly Leather Bags positions at 44 Phan Boi Chau Street-15B Hoang Dieu Street-18 Tran Phu Street, Da Bao Real Leather at 78 Bach Dang Street-25-32-49-109 Tran Phu Street, Blue Lotus Leather at 98 Hung Vuong Street and lastly Buffalo Leather Shop situates at 22 Tran Phu Street. See our article about four best leather bag shops in Hoi An for more information.
Family of leather shoe stores composes dozens of members. Distribute widely from multiple kiosks lined the aisles of the central market until businesses on high streets. No doubt to inform that this is second most-searched leather goods in Hoi An, just behind stylish bags.
Leather shoes in Hoi An central market
Hoi An central market has a fairly large concentration of leather footwares. By and large, the quality of goods is middle-of-the-road here. However, many hidden gems inside it have the standard as similar as big stores across the Old town. Same same but different, their expense is normally at a lower rate. Refer to leather buying guide to make more sense once getting the market.
Because trade for both of Vietnamese and visitors, their shoe-size correspondingly covers a wider range than stores only for tourists. Commonly, you have the chance to try on any sizes that free from the obstruction of salemans. It is great when shop around with your family, with unlike measurements.
Hoi An’s best leather shoe shops-Hoi An Life choice
Avana Boutique (aVa’na), Yaly Couture, Friendly Shoe Shop and Thang Shoes Shop are four highest-rated leather shoe stores where you can not ignore. Avana has being run by an European designer who lives with a love for Hoi An, while the Friendly&Thang Shoe are proud of local ownership. Yaly Couture boasts its premium quality products.
Friendly Shoe Shop-57 Le Loi Street
Set up by French fine art photographer-Rehahn, Friendly Shoe Shop (sister of Friendly Leather Bags) is one of best known Hoi An’s leather shoe shops. Its day-to-day opening time begins from 10 a.m to 9 p.m. The shop provides a fairly diverse collection of good quality shoes in style/size with an affordable price. In case of custom-made items, the turnaround stretches from 12 to 24 hours depending upon different requirements. Furthermore, it offers a full money-back guarantee in six months if your buy is of unacceptable mistakes.
Yaly Couture-47 Nguyen Thai Hoc Street
Yaly Couture is another Hoi An’s leading brand in fashion born by Ms.Quynh 20 years ago. Willing and able to bring the most value for your money, the brand provides prestigious ready-made and bespoke leather shoes. Next highlight associates to well-behaved and knowledgeable sale assistances as well as professional tailors and shoe-makers. They work smoothly to create best-in-class leather goods with any requirements taken. Currently, there are two other Yaly Couture stores at 47 Tran Phu Street (nearby Phuc Kien Assembly Hall) and 358 Nguyen Duy Hieu Street.
Not only famous for a rich collection of shoes, it also gets reputation with world-class made-to-measure tailoring. You will have personal advisor, full range of fabric types, air-conditioned private waiting room and onsite ATMs to cash out when need it. Every single year, a fashion show is organized to exhibit its exquisite outfits on the runway, only in the city. See more at here to know other best tailors in Hoi An.
Avana Boutique-18 Tran Phu Street
The third star, Avana Boutique locates at and opens from 9 a.m to 9 p.m daily. Its best thing belongs to use of full-grain leathers that bring ladies the most durable boots, sandals or heels. Although choices of leather/design here are limited but they’re exclusive, in a variety of sizes. The store deals in off-the-rack clothes employing textiles worldwide along with woman hill tribe pieces.
Thang Shoes Shop-352 Nguyen Duy Hieu Street
If you are being tired of searching nice shoe shops on the sea of information, Thang Shoes Shop (352 Nguyen Duy Hieu Street) is a safe pair of hands. Opening from 8:30 a.m until 9 p.m, the store warmly welcomes anybody with professional attitude that is very attentive and gentle. Its array of leather things are inviting and apparent from the front to end, therefore making you little confused where should start. Employees are hospitable towards guests into the bargain.
There is a flaw if Hoi An Life does not mention this must-have piece of clothing. It stands as the key leatherwork produced from impressive workmanship of Hoianese artisans. Almost reputable leather stores trade in and custom elegant jackets for men&women. In a good standing, they possible manage to satisfy exactly each personal needs.
Song Leather (23A Le Loi Street), Buffalo Leather Shop, Tu-Chi Bags (24 Phan Boi Chau Street) and 09 Shoe Shop (65 Tran Hung Dao Street) are our votes for the nicest leather jacket shops in town. Additionally, shopping experience also looks similar to how you take one bag or a pair of shoes. Our team conducted a tour to all of four above places, the asking price moved around 150-200 USD per jacket (from approximately 3.400.000 VND to 4.600 VND).
Leather workshops in Hoi An
Why participate in a leather workshop?
Firstly, any Hoi An’s leather workshop delivers the participants to learn new skills along with salutary knowledge during their travelling time. Making more sense, you may see all manners of leather or different traditional handicraft techniques of Vietnam that have never experimented with before. This is the good way to know our rich culture. On the other side, someone finds out their pathway to be a craftperson from the inspiration at when he/she participates in the craft workshop.
Over and above, you open a window for the opportunities to make the gift by yourself for family, partner, and friends. Believe that they’re very happy when see it back home. It becomes a meaningful reminder about your holiday in Hoi An as well as full-of-interest experiences during whole making process. We think its message is far beyond anything out there.
Anything else? Yes, each one of craftmans you meet also carry true life stories that good to share and be shared within your session of leather works.
Overall information of leather workshops in Hoi An
Leather workshops of Hoi An are often arranged in a small group and under the all-inclusive instructions of many-years experienced craftman. Generally, whichever of them lasts multi-hours to multi-days hanging on your pick. Because of high flexibility, you are able to take either the morning start or the afternoon one.
Encompassing of the price is another information should note. Every class package always includes necessary materials, full set of working tools and so much sweet supports from the mentor. Furthermore, the inclusion also composes of drinks serving for participants at somewhere.
Steps to design a leather item-Hoi An Life’s experience
Do patterns and cut the leather
Hoi An Life booked online a basic class of Blue Lotus Leather workshop and got quick responses from after. We met Tu who welcomed us with lots of smiles on his face. He shared that started out as an iron maker to earn money for living. Then used entire savings for leather-making lessons to follow his passion. As a place of high reputation in leather goods, so he went to Hoi An to look for the opportunity.
In the beginning, Tu showcased several design options (wallet, card holder, money purse, laptop case, etc), different types of leather together with their corresponding colors to choose from. Then instruct clearly how to cut your picked leather by a paper cutter knife into pieces proper for next uses. The work commenced to gently trace the pattern out by a pen, put the metal ruler on and cut along pre-traced line with a steady force.
Tu also taught very carefully the technique to trim corners into perfect rounder version. To increase the durability of, we used traditional liquids to evenly apply on every cut edge. He said that this step is super important if want to create an aesthetic item. Afterwards, also told us about working with kind of local glue in order to stick securely pre-cut pieces on their right positions.
Punch holes, hand stitch and final details
Once hand stitching, we marked tiny holes by hammering the hole punching tools on necessary hems and edges step by step. It made so much fun with funny sounds coming out. Failed many times (holes too shallow) because we were afraid that would harm our leatherwork so did it not hard enough. On the next stage, just fold over into its final form as well as connected snaps for fastening when use. Finally, Hoi An Life team held in hands our first do-it-yourself pieces. There were lots of unforgettable feelings left in us after all. We said thank you so much to Tu for this wonderful memory with him. Well-done Blue Lotus Leather!
Blue Lotus Leather workshop-The best of its kind in Hoi An
Canh and friends
Canh is a young and talented craftman who formerly worked in his homeland-Hanoi for plenty of years. Unlike other artisans at the time, he wants to be a businessman in leather industry. To follow this dream, he quit the job in 2014 and later moved to Hoi An. Here, Canh created leather products to sell on streets before having enough money to own a studio where he teaches and shares skills&knowledge. Currently, his brainchild is locating at 98 Hung Vuong Street.
Team up with five craftpersons, Canh are working with a goal in creating excellent bespoke items and in traditional hand-sewn leather products for sale. By tireless efforts time after time, awesome classes of Blue Lotus Leather become the best leather workshops in Hoi An. Do not stop at this point, there are many other fruits of the team’s hard works, amongst foremost Hoi An’s custom-made bag and shoe shops for instance.
Options for Blue Lotus Leather Workshop
Basic class (Half-day)
On a 4 to 5 hours basis, the experienced craftman from Blue Lotus Leather workshop team will teach how to make one small item in Vietnamese traditional artisan technique, without any previous experience or knowledge. You are able to pick the favourite leather in their on-site inventory. And then select which piece you want to craft, for example, cardholder, keyring, coin purse, passport cover or wallet.
The class officially starts from 8:30 a.m or 1:30 p.m with 6 participants at most. In addition to, the price covers 1.035.000 VND (45 USD) per person including fine materials and one drink (tea or fresh water). In fact, this class of Blue Lotus Leather presents on the list of bestseller leather workshops in Hoi An.
Immediate class (One day)
Your second selection is an one-day class recommended to the beginners who have no prior experience or already familiar with basic concepts of the leather handicrafting. Its program starts at 8:30 a.m until around 5:30 p.m. There are three items (coin purse, card holder and keyring) you work with in the morning course and a larger one like passport cover or wallet after lunch break (from 12:30 to 13:00). In comparion with any other leather workshops in Hoi An, this has most number of things experiened. Meaning that you will have a couple of perfect sourvenirs on hands to keep good memories about our beautiful city if book it.
Blue Lotus Leather workshop team also flexibly provides another choice for making all-day more complex things such as handbag or laptop case. It costs around 1.840.000 VND (80 USD) per person including materials and a drink (fresh water or tea).
Advanced leather making class (Two days)
Another up-to-the-mark option from Blue Lotus Leather workshopthat well-worth engaging in. It’s highly suitable for who would like to upgrade his/her skills to next level. The participants will learn about different types of leather, tools and couples of long-established manual techniques at first. As an ‘advanced class’, they definitely received the comprehensive instruction to create more complicated works like a handbag, backpack or messenger bag. All works are completed within two days according to original schedule.
Its pricing covers appropriately 3.400.000 VND (150 USD) per person together with the same inclusions to the basic class and the immediate class. In addition to, starting time is at 8:30 in the morning daily. If you are looking for something beyond limits, join this highest-in-level course over all of leather workshops in Hoi An and make full use of your time.
Other highlights of Blue Lotus Leather
Handcrafted ready-made leather bags
Share the same space with leather-making workshop at 98 Hung Vuong Street, there is a collection of moderate priced ready-made bags on display. In spite the fact that when you come, it shows the limitation in number but all is very qualited, hand-sewn carefully, long-lasting and trendy. Depend on the complexity of your item, delivery time it takes from one to three weeks. While bountiful shops (commonly in markets) have no return policy or you must wait for a long time, Blue Lotus Leather give the money back almost immediately via banking account.
Take advantage of skilled craftman team, Canh also collaborates with a bunch of stores nationwide (mainly in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh city) to grow the reputation as well as introduce Hoi An’s high-grade leather products further.
A top Hoi An’s bespoke leather bag and shoe maker
At the moment, Blue Lotus Leather stands out as one of the best workmanship-owned places in Hoi An. Especially, it has been in the bucket list of custom-made leather bag seekers because the shop is able to exceptionally fit to each and every needs. Your experience starts by selecting the type of leather you like. Then come to decision about proper size plus best-loved design. Total timing spent is quite fast-moving due to rich practical know-how of advisors.
Not only leather bags in the spotlight, Canh’s team has the ability in producing fashionable leather shoes too. Current point of material supply sources from dependable localities in Vietnam straight from the horse’s mouth. No matter what you order, the shop will work with tons of meticulousness and considerable passion into. If join a Blue Lotus Leather workshop, you will understand why. We guess that your opinions look the same to us right now.
Blue Lotus Coffee
Apart from leather things, Blue Lotus Coffee is a small café run by Canh and friends, bring java drinkers the chance to enjoy Northern Vietnam styled coffee. Each selection on the menu completely gets prepared by hands and filtered in the traditional method. Ca phe nau or ‘Brown coffee’ (black coffee combined with condensed milk), Ca phe sua dua or coconut milk coffee and Ca phe trung or egg coffee are Hoi An life’s recommendations. Because all of them most clearly reflect typical layer-on-layer decor style of the North people, unlike mugs of coffee as usual we see. That’s good when you have an authentic experience about Hanoi capital if do not visit there this time.
Do you want to try unique egg coffee in Hoi An? See our list here about the best café for this kind of specialty.
Zen Leather Workshop
Profile of Zen Leather
Established by a full-of-passion young craftmans, Zen Leather has strongly stayed as one of the highest-ranking leather workshop in Hoi An for years. Together with Blue Lotus Leather workshop, it introduces local long-standing leather crafting techniques to people around the world. Also, offer custom-made services, specializing in qualitied little cute things such as notebooks, wallets, passport covers and more. In case of bag/shoes, they have being intended to supply in Zen’s near future plan.
Its address lies at Loongboong homestay, Tra Que organic vegetable village that close by An Bang beach. That’s greatly convenient for having a good time after spending hours with your piece during the workshop.
Zen Leather’s contact information:
Address: Loongboong homestay, Tra Que vegetable village
Telephone number: (+84) 976 678 289
Zen Leather workshops
Basic class-Four hours
Everybody has a chance to create a personalized leather item such as wallet, passport cover, pen holder, cigarettes pouch, kindle cover and much more within four hours. It’s not really a big ask for beginners inexperienced in. You will pay about 1.030.000 VND (45 USD) for this basic class under detailed guidance of extremely friendly craftman/craftwoman. In particular, the cost emcompasses full array of necessary materials and a drink (coffee or passion fruit juice).
Bookbinding class-the signature of Zen Leather
Focus on self-customized notebook cover, this 2.5 to 3.5 hours option provides a full package of relating techniques in the comprehensive way. Zen Leather’s bookbinding class is only and has the quality par excellence if compare to various look-alike leather workshops in Hoi An.
Its overall price covers around 870.000 VND (38 USD) per person composing of leather, tools, accessories and a drink (coffee or passion fruit juice). Hoi An Life advises you to get in touch at least twenty-four hours before your expecting date. Message on Zen’s official Facebook page to discuss in order to catch the preferences. Complementarily, they do a lovely job when reply to the messages typically less than an hour.