COMMONLY ASKED QUESTIONS (AND ANSWERS)
Q: What leathers do you offer?
Primarily Shell Cordovan, Latigo, Kangaroo hide, Spanish Horse hide, and vegetable tanned steer hide - all subject to stock availability.
Q: What colours are available?
Shell Cordovan - black, brown, and burgundy. Though I do not always have all three colours in stock at any given moment. In addition, whenever my wholesalers have other Horween colours available (e.g. Natural / Whiskey Tan / Bourbon), I will often be able to add them to my colour catalogue - though not with the regularity of the darker colours.
Latigo - black and brown.
The Kangaroo, Spanish Horse Hide, and vegetable tanned steer hide, are all natural in colour.
Q: What second surface materials do you offer?
Fine weave natural Flax Linen, natural hemp webbing, and brushed cotton webbing.
PLEASE NOTE: Currently, I am only able to offer the natural linen in 2" & 3" width. I have been searching for a supplier/manufacturer of 2.5" width natural linen for quite some time, but so far without success. My 2.5" width strops utilise the brushed cotton webbing.
Q: Do you offer poly webbing?
No - I prefer to offer natural materials.
Q: What width strops do you make?
Any width is possible within reason, but primarily 2.5" and 3".
Q: What length are your strops?
I usually make them with approximately 15" - 18" of clear stropping area. Extra long strops are not always as easy to keep taut, and this can lead to a decrease in control during the stropping motion, and thus an increased chance of a bad turn of the razor inflicting a cut or nick in the leather. Though should the customer require a longer strop, I am always happy to oblige (price may increase according to size).
Q: What style of strops do you make?
All my strops are 'hanging strops', that usually fall into one of three categories. 1) Strops with stuffed, hand stitched handles. 2) Strops with premium stainless steel bevelled D rings. 3) Strops with plain 'barber's end'.
Q: What materials do you use for handles, bolsters and joining tabs?
There are a variety of materials available, both textured and plain - e.g. croc print, alligator print, reptile print, snake print. Also plain materials in a variety of colours - e.g. latigo, calf hide, soft nubuck, soft pigskin, suede.
PLEASE NOTE: The textured materials are faux leathers - i.e. they are an imitation print, embossed onto a leather material. I do not use real skins from these animals and reptiles, as often they are obtained in particularly inhumane ways from developing countries, where animal welfare is questionable at best, and in many cases the skins are from species that are illegal to kill and sell. I thoroughly enjoy working with leather, but not where I believe the animal may have suffered so that I may use its skin.
Q: Do you make a strop for beginners?
Yes, I make a 'starter' strop, aimed at beginners. Please see the starter strop section of this website for more information.
Q: Do you make paddle strops?
Not at present.
Q: Are your strops modular?
Most often yes, but not always - Some of the materials I use do necessitate the use of glue. However, if a modular strop is of importance, I will always endeavour to make it as such.
Q: Can I have the Horween stamp on the back of my Shell Cordovan strop?
Sadly I cannot guarantee that the Horween 'Shell Cordovan' stamp will be present on the back of your strop. Horween apply a single stamp to the reverse of the each Shell. The stamp is approximately 4" wide, and is not always directly in the middle of the shell. To keep my strops affordable, I have to get as many from each Shell as possible. As such, I cannot guarantee that your strop will be the one that has the stamp. If it really is an absolute must that you have it, there will be an additional cost applied. Consideration should also be given to the fact that I may not have any pieces of shell in stock that have the stamp present, and therefore completion of the strop would have to wait until I re-stock, which may not be for several weeks.
PLEASE NOTE: Horween do not always apply the stamp to the lighter colours of shell (Whiskey Tan / Bourbon).
Q: Do you post to my country?
Almost certainly! My customer base at present, encompasses the United Kingdom, Europe, the United States, and Australia. If in doubt, just ask!
Q: What is your turnaround time from receiving an order to dispatch?
Varies according to how many orders I currently have! I usually try to have strops complete and ready for dispatch within 3 weeks of ordering. Though please bear in mind that at present, Westholme Strops is not my full time job - I work in the aviation industry, and making strops takes place in my spare time. As such, there are periods each week when I am not able to work on orders due to being at my day job, and this combined with other everyday factors, can sometimes increase production time to 4 - 5 weeks from date of ordering.
Q: I don't want to wait! Where I purchase one of your strops immediately?
As I have built up my reputation and my customer base has expanded, I find that most of my work comes from custom orders. However, periodically I do find the time to complete a handful of strops for immediate sale. These are usually listed on eBay, and its worth checking my Facebook page periodically for any updates in this regard.
Q: How do I go about placing an order?
Send me a message! Let me know what strop you are looking for, and we'll go from there.
Q: How do I pay?
I take payment via Paypal where possible. Alternatively, if you are a UK buyer, you can make a bank transfer. US customers can also use Western Union if they wish.
Q: Why don't you have an online shop, and why can't I purchase directly from your website?
At present the costs involved in this kind of website are prohibitive. Perhaps in the future.
Q: When will you reply to my message?
As soon as possible! However, as I have previously mentioned in this FAQ, please bear in mind that I have a day job separate from making strops - so it is not always possible for me to answer messages on the day I receive them. Weekends too, may result in less replies - but rest assured all messages carry equal importance, and I shall endeavour to get a reply to you as soon as I can.