With Bavaria’s legendary Oktoberfest about to get underway, DW pays a visit to a family-owned business that’s been making the pants for over a century.
Making the tailor made Lederhosen
or the Lederhosen that we make in our own workshop, we use nothing but chamois tanned deer leather. This leather is tanned with cod oil and colored with the tree bark of logwood. After this tanning process, the leather is imported to Germany where it is treated for another three months. Every corner of the leather is a hand-selected product of nature. When you come to us and decide on a pair of tailor made Lederhosen, we take your measurements and look for the best and most beautiful piece of leather. The leather is then cut for the trousers and will end up having four pieces cut out plus the extra pieces such as for pockets, etc.
So that your Lederhosen still look great and maintain their form after many years of wear, special stress areas are reinforced with extra leather on the inside. The trousers have reached the stage where they are to be embroidered. For this purpose the Leistl, or pattern, is glued on with special glue made from rye and water. The costumer’s desired embroidery pattern is drawn on with gummi arabicum. The knee length Lederhosen are different from the short Lederhosen in that the former uses a white, lock-stitch embroidery pattern while the short Lederhosen usually have a normal embroidery stitch in green thread and a pattern of oak, grape, or ivy leaves. It then takes anywhere from 10 to 15 hours to embroider the Lederhosen. The time necessary is dependent upon the pattern selected.
When all of this work has been completed, the trousers are sewn together and the measurements controlled. To finish the trousers, all the stitching is controlled one more time. Finally, the pants are brushed down and the last check is done. Now the Lederhosen are finished and are waiting to be worn by “their” proud owners. The time necessary to complete short trousers is about 22 hours while long trousers need about 27 hour.