The black lambskin gloves were £3. I love the perforated design (OK, not warm but atleast breathable) and the gold clasps at the cuffs. When I asked the shop assistant how they should be cleaned, she suggested saddle soap. Sounded like too much trouble for cheap gloves but I bought them since they fit perfectly and I'll never find another pair like them again.
Now before everyone reels back in horror at the thought of wearing used gloves, I thoroughly washed them first. This was my no frills method:
1) Fill sink with warm water and add anti-bacterial hand wash to make it sudsy.
2) Immerse the gloves and repeatedly squeeze them to get the water to flush through. Don't scrub. Turn them inside out and do the same. Turn them back the right way out.
3) Rinse under cold water and squeeze out the excess water.
4) Dry by laying flat over a heater. Lay them on a towel if your heater is really hot. It should take an hour or two to dry, depending on the thickness of the leather.
5) When fully dry, moisturise with leather conditioner. I did'nt have any so I wore the gloves and massaged in sorbelene cream (non-perfumed basic moisturiser). A few coats will soften the leather and make it supple.
I don't recommend this technique with all leather gloves (especially if they are expensive, lined or not black) but since these were cheap, there no harm in doing it this way.
The gloves are now perfect and so unbelievably soft. I hope they last forever!
The second thing I purchased was this vintage leather handbag. The bow is cute and the detachable long narrow strap can be worn over the body.
The colour is truly eye-catching. I don't see it produced anywhere nowadays. It's difficult to capture it on camera because sometimes it looks antique fuschia and other times red violet. The best way I can describe it is that it's the colour of blueberry juice.
Oddily under halogen lights, the handbag looks deep magenta.
The bag was in new condition and a steal for £3! I love it so much, I carry it everywhere. The bag will become slouchier over time too. It's like a welcome gift from London. Heh heh!