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Fashion & Style

Where to get leather repaired in Toronto

Posted by Robyn Urback / March 1, 2012

Leather Repair TorontoLeather repair in Toronto can breathe new life into some of our favourite possessions. It always seems to be the leather goods — a choice handbag, beloved jacket, leather chaps...whatever — that wear out the fastest, resulting in unrivaled dismay in comparison to most rips and tears. A needle and thread will provide a quick fix for most cotton-based blunders, but when it comes to leather, it's best to resort to the professionals. Here are some of the places offering leather first aid in Toronto.

The Sandalman, 1181 Davenport Road (416.533.6335)

Sandalman is pretty much the name when it comes to leather repair in Toronto. Owner Cory Bernatt has been at the trade for over three decades, fixing anything and everything leather including bags, jackets, furniture, belts and more. And The Sandalman, of course, will always build you a fresh pair of sandals while your sofa is being restored.

Coats by Mary Ellen, 951 Wilson Avenue (416.785.2040)

Naturally, those who know how to built it, also know how to fix it. Coats by Mary Ellen is family-owned North York shop known for its custom coats, but also for its leather services and repairs. And no — not just for coats. Prices are generally pretty affordable, and Italian conversation is always encouraged.

Leather Genie, Everywhere

This hilariously named company is Toronto's answer to mobile leather repair. The leather genie has been working his leather "magic" (cringe) for over 30 years, fixing up scratches, worn leather, tears, discoloration and more. The genie, also known as Peter Otis, works all throughout the GTA.

Cheeseworth Invisible Mending, 645 Mount Pleasant Road (416.481.2251)

At Mount Pleasant and Davisville, Cheeseworth Invisible Mending is one of those old-school dry clean and garment repair shops where a fedora just seems terribly necessary. Cheeseworth does all sorts of garment and accessory leather repair — and needless to say — knows how to bury a seam.

Kaner's Handbag and Shoe Repair, 110 Bloor Street W (416.920.9982)

Mustafa Ali at Kaners has garnered the venerable reputation as one of Toronto's best for restoring Blahniks to like-new, but he also knows a thing or two about ripped or worn leather. This lower-level Bay Street shop is particularly the place to go with luxury leather handbags that are in need of some first-aid, and yes, you can trust him with your quilted lamb leather.

Burkcraft, 191 Nugget Ave (416.850.4250)

Perhaps not your go-to spot for those leather boots your wore out in the snow, but Burkcraft can work wonders on tired leather furniture. The shop specializes in custom reupholstery and creative repair, and the decent quotes the shop offers generally makes the trek to Scarborough worth the drive. A good choice as well for restoring old leather antiques.

Sole Survivor,16 Kensington Ave (647.995.3306)

This is one place that won't give you a second glance if your haul includes shoes and garments in need of some vegan leather love. Owner Katie Reed can offer repairs for both vegan leather and regular leather products, all while suggesting the best polishes, potions, and cleaners to keep them looking brand-spankin'-new. Right in the heart of Kensington Market.

Shoe Repair Plus, 920 Pape Avenue (416.463.2002)

Let the "plus," in this case, refer to everything leather. (Though it might actual refer to custom shoe creation, but that's besides the point). Mike Roussetos is the leather master at this East York shop, equipped with a lifelong roster of leather repair knowledge as a Greek shoemaker's son. On Pape at Mortimer.


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Ride'em cowboy / March 1, 2012 at 03:05 pm
This is perfect timing for this article, my buttless chaps are in need of mending. Thanks,Robyn!
Hush Puppy / March 1, 2012 at 03:29 pm
Sandalman is overrated and expensive. Try Perfect Leather on King St West. Much cheaper.
Clive replying to a comment from Ride'em cowboy / March 1, 2012 at 10:06 pm
OMG! Yours too? Mine also need the white stains scrubbed off
S. / March 1, 2012 at 10:35 pm
Can you review watch repair? Good ones that repair antique and vintage time pieces too.
jibbly / March 1, 2012 at 11:03 pm
I've taken two leather jackets, a pair of boots, and a motorcycle seat to Sandalmans and have been pleased as punch every time. It's definitely not overrated. If it can be done with leather, it can be done by Sandalman. Can't speak to it being overpriced though, so that might hold water.
Mr. Beck / March 2, 2012 at 08:13 am
The Sandalman is great, if a little pricey. However, it's worth noting that he doesn't typically handle boots. However, if you're in need of some boot repairs, the best option in the city can be found a short trip East to Nick's Shoe Repair, on the corner of Dupont and Davenport.
J / March 2, 2012 at 01:04 pm
Yeah, with a name like sandalman, you'd think he does boots, but he doesn't. He did steer us to Nick's though, so we appreciate him for that because they're amazing at Nick's.
maureen sirois / March 5, 2012 at 08:09 pm
I agree, I have used Nick's for years to fix shoes boots and handbags and everything that he does is great. He will honestly tell you if something is beyond repair. He can also make boots etc. A great source to fix stuff in Toronto.
Downtown guy / March 8, 2012 at 12:48 pm
I've only had one experience with the so called, "Leather Genie". I found him to be obnoxious and incompetent. Stay FAR, FAR away from this genie...
Sam / July 3, 2012 at 09:51 am
Cheeseworth = rude, snobby, and obnoxious all around. Please go elsewhere to get respectful service.
Tony / July 20, 2012 at 04:12 pm
Love Your Leather is one of the largest leather repair factories in Toronto. They have been in the leather repair business for over 25 years. They specialize in repairing broken zippers and buckles, faded leather, lining replacement and repair, leather alterations, rips, tears and scratches as well as leather upholstery repair. Address: 41 Advance Rd, Toronto ON M8Z 2M6, (416)-538-8669.
Anne / August 9, 2012 at 10:11 am
If you are looking for a mobile company that will come to you, try Custom Image Auto Inc. They provide an affordable, professional service and they come to your location.
andrea / October 6, 2012 at 10:35 pm
While surfing the internet trying to find someone competent to fix a tear on my leather jacket. I stumbled across a local "canadian manufacturer". WOW what a great find Coats By Mary Ellen has been manufacturing coats and jackets for over 25 years right here in the city. The service was great and the workmanship was top notch. I would highly recommend this company to anyone in need of a repair. They are located at 951 Wilson Ave Unit #19. (416-785-2040) www.coatsinc,com. They do it all!!!
Thanks John for your great service. Keep it up !!!!!!!
joey / November 9, 2012 at 10:58 pm
Thanks for recommending Coats By Mary Ellen it truly was a "great find" . Just had my leather jacket cleaned and
re-dyed it looks great. Thanks John.
mg / November 14, 2012 at 01:31 pm
andrea... i have a tear in my leather coat needing repair, what kind of cost did you incur at Coats by Mary Ellen?
Daniela / November 16, 2012 at 08:37 am
Hi, if you're looking for the perfect winter coat I know just the place. While searchig on the net, I came across a local coat manufacturer COATS BY MARY ELLEN. YES, they actually make the coats right on the premises, wow!!! I visited their showroom and was impressed with all the different styles, colours and beautiful fabrics to choose from. The staff were quite helpful, explaining that the fabrics were imported from Italy and the coats were fully lined with a satin lining, flannel backing and a full chamois (piece of genuine leather)in the back of the coat to keep your back warm. Once again I was amazed by the high quality!!! I ended up buying a beautiful 3/4 length black cashmere coat at a reasonable price.
Thank you very much John and Lisa at Coats by Mary Ellen, I will tell all my friends.....p.s. I will be back in the spring for a spring coat.
Lenka / January 18, 2013 at 08:04 pm
Is alternation possible with a leather jacket? Any experience? Can anyone please tell me if any of the places mentioned above can alter a leather jacket. I purchased a beautiful fitted leather jacket then lost weight and now it really should be taken down a size. Thank you!
Bill / January 22, 2013 at 03:26 pm
I am surprised this article didn't include us. I own Perfect Leather Goods and we have been the city's busiest repair service for leather for over 40 years. Kind of dissapointed Blog T.O. but then again we don't advertise
thinkfashionin / February 8, 2013 at 06:38 am

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tanja / March 6, 2013 at 12:12 pm
I would take it to Coats By Mary Ellen they do it all. They do all types of alterations to leather and wool coats right on the premises. They truly are the best in the city. I have bought all my wool coats from them... as well as reffered them to all my family and friends. Keep up the great work... Bye.
Frances / April 1, 2013 at 11:36 am
Cheeseworth did a horrible job repairing a pair of suede pants recently.
Which is why I'm on this site looking for someone who will do a better job....

I brought in a pair two weeks ago to have them fix a simple tear - they used an iron-on patch which came off after one wear. Charged a fortune.

Go elsewhere.

Frank / April 2, 2013 at 11:30 am
Casabrava is awesome,its in kensinkton market,I took my leather bike Jacket to be altered and restored, I got to tell u I was very pleased, definitely great service.
george / April 11, 2013 at 12:41 pm
i always go to T.O leather fashions on Spadina
they work fast and have some great tailors.
good prices and the guy knows what hes talking about.
george / April 11, 2013 at 12:42 pm

i believe this is them
mzdwells / April 30, 2013 at 10:13 pm
Kaner's was supposed to repair a few nicks in the leather of my cherry red patent Blahniks and ended up stripping the patent and repainting them a different red - it looked like spray paint. When I tried to complain they just yelled at me and basically told me to go away. Its really too bad they have such a following.
Leather wallets exporter in India@Rehana / September 4, 2013 at 02:33 am
Such a great blog.I want to buy a stylish fashionable leather bags.
Cory Bernatt replying to a comment from Hush Puppy / October 11, 2013 at 02:59 am
If winning best leather repair for 7 years straight in Now magazines "best of Toronto" and Best of the decade from Toronto Life magazine makes The Sandalman over rated, then I guess so. Expensive is relative to the quality of materials being used and people being paid a fair wage for their work. If you want less expensive you can go to a shoe repair that will ruin your leather for much less. If you want high quality workmanship and the confidence that your favorite leather items are in capable hands then you go to The Sandalman.
Leather furniture repairs / October 11, 2013 at 04:11 am
I am very appreciate this post. i like your post because your concept is very clear i will be understand now thanking for this post.
Drazen / October 14, 2013 at 12:05 pm
I have been getting my rugs cleaned at Love Your Leather for several years now because of their low price and quality work. Last week I got them to repair one of my ripped rugs and they did a great job and my repaired rug was delivered back to me in under a week. I would recommend them to anyone in Toronto looking for leather repair. Their number is 416-538-8669
Benjamin / November 7, 2013 at 05:25 am
My sister visited last month along with her Lab for a week. I have a loveseat brought from Coja, Toronto, and it seems like her lab just hates it. By the time she was gone all I could see on my loveseat is so many scratches and tears. I really liked that piece and this blog is giving me good hope that I could get my furniture in good condition.
Crandall Childerhose / November 14, 2013 at 08:36 pm
Most of the Dry cleaners in Ontario an from Buffalo, New York send their leather repairs to the biggest leather and suede cleaners in Ontario, called Suede Master. they do all kinds of repairs including patching, new paneles, new zippers re-dying new zippers and linings, etc. Their long history and reputation makes them the best choice by far.
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Jake / January 4, 2014 at 05:03 pm
I would not recommend anyone go to The Sandalman for anything. I brought a pair of gloves in to fix a small tear and loose threading. He promised it'd be done in a week but ended up taking over a month to get my gloves back. The stitching was poorly done and the tear only got worse within a couple weeks. Very poor quality workmanship. $100 pair of gloves ruined. Beware.
Tom / March 5, 2014 at 05:13 pm
Try Ace-Fusion Leather Repair, mobile service, quality repairs to all leather & vinyl products. 35 years exp. 905-731-7310
Jeff / March 7, 2014 at 01:33 pm
Had a messenger bag strap repaired at Perfect Leather today. Fixed on the spot while I waited, and charge was very minimal. A+.
snowpine / April 18, 2014 at 08:24 am
Love Your Leather is stellar. Excellent workmanship, flawless customer service and they love what they do. A joy to deal with !
James North / August 9, 2014 at 05:37 am
Love Your Leather offers professional leather repair services. your leather repair that we offer 100% with satisfaction Guarantee or my money back.
Gary Miller / October 12, 2014 at 05:35 pm
I got a guitar strap fixed their a while back, sorry for the late delay in reviewing. I was in Toronto and needed it fixed fast. Normally I go to Dr.Vinyl & Mr.Hide in Barrie but I was in a pinch and had to get it fixed for a gig that night. They did a great job and got the strap fixed quickly. Thanks
leather chaps / December 17, 2014 at 11:33 am
sandalman's are the worst!! stay away from these idiots.
Jessica / February 3, 2015 at 12:14 am
I've been thinking about dyeing a designer bag from a light colour to black, does anyone know a good/reputable place to get this done?
Cory / February 23, 2015 at 01:07 pm
Anyone know a place that repairs the metal closure of a briefcase? I've struck out with numerous google searches.
Lucy / March 26, 2015 at 05:48 pm
I know a great place for leather repairs if anyone is interested. Coats by Mary Ellen did a great job on my leather jacket. The place is a hidden gem. They also make wool coats. The owners are really competent and are good to deal with. They also have some really unique hair accessories and other products that you can't find anywhere else. Really worth a visit!
Cory Bernatt replying to a comment from Tony / July 31, 2015 at 03:03 pm
A customer brought in a leather jacket to fix that was damaged by love your leather. They altered the sleeves so tightly that the customer couldn't get it on. We added a section to resolve the problem and the customer was 100% satisfied. We are happy to look at a project and give you a free estimate and help guide you through the repair process. If you really love your leather go to the Sandalman also know as First aid for leather.
Check out our very funny video that has us operating on a leather jacket to bring it back to life in a very amusing fashion.;app=desktop

Cory Bernatt replying to a comment from Hush Puppy / July 31, 2015 at 03:13 pm
I tell customers all the time that not all items are worth repairing and its hard to justify the time and money in many cases. When people say we're expensive, I tell them that the meaning of expensive is that you don't get value for your money and we are worth every penny we charge. Otherwise we wouldn't be voted by readers of Now magazine for 7 consecutive years as Toronto's best leather repair or in Toronto Life as "best of the decade" we do work for Tiffany and Company for all 11 stores across Canada because they like the quality of our work. My father used to say and probably still does, lol "they're nothing you can't get for a little less that isn't a little worse"
Cory Bernatt replying to a comment from Cory / July 31, 2015 at 03:17 pm
First aid for leather, aka The Sandalman replaces locks, zippers, buckles and more...
Cory Bernatt replying to a comment from Jessica / July 31, 2015 at 03:19 pm
I don't recommend you get this done as the light colour inside the seams can will not be completely covered by the over spray of colour and this will leave a glow around all the seams and basically ruin the purse. You can go a shade or 2 darker without this result. Hope this helps
Rob / August 10, 2015 at 03:43 pm
I called The Sandalman to get a ballpark estimate to either punch a hole in a nice leather belt I have, or else take the buckle off and shorten the belt. Guy who answered the phone told me 'no estimates over the phone'. When I said I just wanted a very general ballpark for either operation, he got very snooty and started lecturing me like I was 12 years old. There are other people in Toronto who will gladly take my money and treat me with a bit more respect.
Cory Bernatt replying to a comment from Rob / August 11, 2015 at 12:56 pm
People ask us for quotes over the phone all the time and if its basic repairs we will provide a ball park figure. In many cases people will get impatient with not getting a quote even though its impossible to give an accurate cost for many repairs due to material cost, labour cost and other factors. So as a rule we don't like to give firm quotes without having all the information. We apologise to Rob for not being able to give you an idea of cost but hope you understand now why we weren't able to do so.
Sandalman aka first aid for leather / March 4, 2016 at 10:16 pm
In response to jake about his glove. His glove was fixed within a week and he came back because another area of the glove was coming apart. He wanted me to fix it free of charge which I might have done had he not threatened me with writing bad review about the store. People are sometimes very disrespectful to the crafts person treating us without the respect we deserve!
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