Exhibitor Portraits # 5 Leather

jcduchene

Jean-Charles Duchêne, CEO and Technical Director of Mégisserie Alric, Première Vision Leather, chose the colour “junky chick” from the AW1718 colour range.

My job Engineer tanner

Jungling technical requirements and aesthetics. That’s the tanner’s daily challenge. Today’s luxury brands demand a lot from materials, sometimes at the expense of quality. Each skin is different, each shade is different, each customer is different. So we have to adapt and reinvent colours every day. And it’s when it’s time to validate the colours we
realize we all have a different way of seeing them! I was an engineer in the aerospace industry when my father bought the tawer where he was director. I had already worked there in the summer, during my studies. I joined him in 2014. I worked in all the jobs, so luckily I know about all the steps involved in transforming skins, from the slaughterhouse to the sewing machine. My key mission today, I think, is conserving our know-how. Of course, there is the everyday stuff… Profitability is very stressful in our profession. Management, or rather steering the process, is a very delicate task. Any problem can turn into a disaster. Our business is a kind of industrial artisanship: we don’t have the right to make mistakes and yet we
are working on completely experimental processes. Not having total control is a very scary thing for a technician. In addition, there are many constraints related to ecoresponsibility.
But I like to remember that we, tanners and tawers, recycle waste in the food industry… to make a luxury product.