Itasca Leathergoods

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      • Women's Nokasippi, Fuchsia 2 Cota, Beaucoup Handbag, Trimbelle in Gauntlet by Itasca Leathergoods
      • Women's Spring/Summer 2014 Cota moccasins by Itasca Leathergoods
      • Men's and Women's Belts by Itasca Leathergoods
      • Men's Boots by Itasca Leathergoods
      • Women's Galena Handbags by Itasca Leathergoods
      • Men's and Women's Wallets by Itasca Leathergoods
      Men's and Women's Schoolcraft pull-on boot by Itasca Leathergoods Click here to watch a video about Itasca Leathergoods. Men's and Women's Yazoo slipper by Itasca Leathergoods

      Via our custom order program, we offer the opportunity for you to create your own custom moccasins using any of our leather types and colors. Depending on the style ordered, you may select up to four or five different hide types or colors.

      Our basic hide is cowhide, available in full grain (finished) leather or suede. Our premium leathers include buffalo, elk and moose hides, as well as sheepskin. For good measure we throw in a pig hide option durable, if not attractive. All in all, we offer more than 110 different leathers. Hover your cursor over any swatch below for a close-up view of the leather.

      When choosing your leathers, be aware of the variances that are inherent in any natural hide:

      • We have done our best at accurately reflecting leather color on our website. Please be aware that every computer monitor registers color differently and we cannot guarantee that the color you receive will exactly match the color that you are seeing on your monitor.
      • Every natural hide is variable and the degree of texture or grain pattern shown on the swatches may not be consistent from hide to hide or even consistent within one hide. However, you can be assured that we will match each shoe within the pair that you order.
      • Every natural hide has the potential for markings or scars consistent with the life that the animal experienced. While some markings are natural, we will not use damaged parts of the hide that will affect wear. Unless specifically requested, we will not use branding iron scars that are present on a small percentage of the hides we have.

      Click here to link to our Custom Order page for specific instructions on ordering your custom pair of moccasins. Remember, all of our moccasins are handmade in the USA.

      Cowhide Full-Grain


      Color

      Antique Cream

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Aqua

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Bark

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Beige

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Bisque

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Black (2)

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Black Angus

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Bone

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Brown Bear

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Brown Nubuck

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Burgundy

      Cowhide full-grain leather



      Color

      Camo

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Cedar

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Canyon

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Chili

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Coffee

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Chocolate (2)

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Cordovan

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Dark Brown (2)

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Dark Teal

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Distressed Squash

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Distressed Toast

      Cowhide full-grain leather



      Color

      Elephant

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Fuchsia

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Gauntlet

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Gold

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Grape

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Green Bullhide

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Grey

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Grizzly

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Honey

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Hot Pink

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Hot Pink Nubuck

      Cowhide full-grain leather



      Color

      Italian Green

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Jade

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Kiwi

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Lilac

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Lilac (2)

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Lime

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Manly Brown

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Matte Brown (2)

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Medium Brown

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Mint

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Mocha

      Cowhide full-grain leather



      Color

      Moss

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Natural

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Navy

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Oiled Black

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Oiled Bronze

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Oil Chocolate

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Oil Coffee

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Oiled Olive Nubuck

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Oil Toast

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Olive Brown

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Orange

      Cowhide full-grain leather



      Color

      Peacock

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Peacock Nubuck

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Pearl Blue

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Pebble

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Pink

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Pink Nubuck

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Pull Up

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Purple Bullhide

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Red

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Red Oak

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Redwood

      Cowhide full-grain leather



      Color

      Rustic Charcoal Blue

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Rustic Green

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Rustic Light Sage

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Rustic Purple

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Rustic Red

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Saddle

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Saddle Rough

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Salmon

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Squash

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Stiff Oil Tan

      Cowhide full-grain leather



      Color

      Tan

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Taupe

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Toast

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Turquoise (2)

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Violet Nubuck

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Walnut

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      White

      Cowhide full-grain leather

      Cowhide Metallics


      Color

      Antique Brass Metallic

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Bronze Metallic

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Gunmetal Metallic

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Pewter Metallic

      Cowhide full-grain leather

      Cowhide Embossed


      Color

      Olive Embossed

      Cowhide full-grain leather used in home decor products


      Color

      Red Embossed

      Cowhide full-grain leather used in home decor products


      Color

      Tan Embossed

      Cowhide full-grain leather used in home decor products.


      Color

      Caramel Rose

      Cowhide full-grain leather used in home decor products.


      Color

      Chocolate Rose

      Cowhide full-grain leather used in home decor products.


      Color

      Granite Rose

      Cowhide full-grain leather used in home decor products.


      Color

      Red Rose

      Cowhide full-grain leather used in home decor products.

      Cowhide Suede


      Color

      Aqua

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Black

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Blue Grey

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Burgundy

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Chocolate

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Dark Grey

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Forest Green

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Fuchsia

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Gold

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Hot Pink

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Kiwi

      Cowhide full-grain leather



      Color

      Light Grey

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Loden

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Navy

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Pink

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Purple

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Red

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      RoyalBlue

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Rust

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Sand

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Toast

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Turquoise Teal

      Cowhide full-grain leather

      Cowhide Belt Leathers


      Color

      Black Aztec

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Brown Latigo

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Charcoal Nubuck

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Dark Brown Aztec

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Distressed Brown

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Natural Premium Veg Tan

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Red Latigo

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Russet Harness

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Taupe Nubuck

      Cowhide full-grain leather


      Color

      Tobacco Aztec

      Cowhide full-grain leather

      Buffalo


      Color

      Aegean

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Black

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Black Shrunken

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Brown

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Buckskin

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Cayenne

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Chestnut

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Cream

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      DoveGrey

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Gunmetal Gray

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Khaki

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Mahogany

      Buffalo leather



      Color

      Chocolate Nubuck

      Buffalo leather, waterproof


      Color

      Tan Nubuck

      Buffalo leather, waterproof


      Color

      Oiled Brown

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Peanut

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Powder Pink

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Sand

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Toast

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Tobacco

      Buffalo leather


      Color

      Tumbleweed

      Buffalo leather

      Elk


      Color

      Black

      Elk leather


      Color

      Brown

      Elk leather


      Color

      Buckskin

      Elk leather


      Color

      Chocolate

      Elk leather


      Color

      Cream

      Elk leather


      Color

      Dusk

      Elk leather


      Color

      Light Grey

      Elk leather


      Color

      Mahogany

      Elk leather


      Color

      Mahogany 2

      Elk leather


      Color

      Rust

      Elk leather


      Color

      Toast

      Elk leather



      Color

      Tobacco

      Elk leather

      Moose


      Color

      Brown

      Moose leather


      Color

      Forest Green

      Moose leather


      Color

      Red

      Moose leather

      Sheepskin


      Color

      High Viz

      Plush Sheepskin


      Color

      Jungle

      Plush Sheepskin


      Color

      Pink

      Plush Sheepskin


      Color

      Toast

      Plush Sheepskin


      Color

      Turquoise

      Plush Sheepskin

      Pigskin


      Color

      Natural

      Pigskin leather

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

       

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              About Us


              See What We're All About

              History

              Itasca Moccasin was started in 1986 by Mardel Bents, who learned the moccasin-making business after being sold a set of leather-working equipment by a salesman from St. Paul, MN. The company was located in the tiny Minnesota community of Lake George, MN, just a few miles to the east of Itasca State Park in North Central Minnesota where the headwaters of the Mississippi River is located. For about 25 years, the company store was a rustic, shopworn souvenir stand that attracted tourists driving to and from the park. Bents (and subsequently one employee), handcrafted moccasins all winter in preparation for the following year's summer tourist season. As each summer season passed by, supplies were depleted until they were replenished during the next winter's moccasin-making season.

              Due to its central location between the Leech Lake, White Earth and Red Lake reservations, the company attracted a significant following of Native American customers, who used the moccasins as a part of their regalia for Powwow dances and for other cultural events.

              Over the years, Bents perfected her moccasin-making techniques and turned out beautifully made premium-quality moccasins, including custom pattern-making for customers with hard-to-fit feet. Not only did she use basic cowhide, but she had the forethought to introduce the use of premium leathers such as buffalo, elk and moose; she also utilized the most incredibly plush sheepskin for slippers.

              Recent Past

              In early April 2012, Bents retired and sold the business to Paul Kirkman who changed the name to Itasca Leathergoods to extend the brand identity beyond its moccasin-making roots. Kirkman maintained the company's sole employee and over the next two months completely rebranded the company into a fashion-forward business that was more closely aligned with its premium-quality craftsmanship. The original factory store was gutted and renovated inside and out. The logo was modernized while still clearly acknowledging the company's heritage. Moccasin styles and colors were updated. Advertising campaigns were designed and executed. And most importantly of all, a second store, deemed to be the company's flagship store, was built out and opened in the prestigious resort community of Crosslake MN. Both the original factory store and the new flagship store (re)opened by Memorial Day 2012 and immediately garnered rave reviews from its new and former customers and received generous favorable press. A third store, in Hayward WI, followed in spring 2013, located in a historic turn-of-the-century brick building on Main Street in the heart of downtown.

              In 2012, in an effort to diversify product lines, Itasca Leathergoods introduced its first non-moccasin offerings: simple placemats and coasters constructed of durable rugged cowhide, as well as intricately hand-laced placemats and coasters made from dramatic embossed leather. These were followed shortly thereafter by a leather sleeve for Apple's iPad. Of course, all are made of leather, utilizing many of the leather working and hand lacing skills learned over the years. In 2013, the company procured a strap-cutting machine and began to make sturdy belts with honest construction for men and women that are expected to last for decades. Two styles of handbags were introduced in late 2013, along with exquisite men's and ladies' wallets; the wallets are made by a leather craftsman with an incredible pedigree - he apprenticed with two major Italian design houses in his youth.

              With all of this growth came the need for additional employees. With the country having just come off a significant years-long recession, we're proud to say that we've increased from our original sole employee and now employ more than ten people - stable manufacturing jobs, the backbone of rural communities.

              Future

              In planning future growth, we've identified three main areas of focus:

              1. Our push for 2014 and 2015 is for rapid expansion of wholesale accounts in high-end independent boutiques in urban areas throughout the country; in an effort to spur this growth, we're exhibiting at both national and regional wholesale markets across the country, focusing on product lines such as gifts, accessories and footwear.
              2. To further diversify our in-store offerings, we will continue to introduce new products and product lines. The near future will bring more styles of handbags and goods for the home, including leather knickknacks, decorative pillows, and (perhaps surprisingly) even leather Christmas decor.
              3. Over the coming years, we hope to open additional stores in the Mountain states, the South and the Southwestern United States. It is our goal to make Itasca Leathergoods a nationally-known and highly sought-after brand.

              We sincerely thank you for your interest in Itasca Leathergoods.

              Contact Information

              To contact us, please send an email to info@itascaleathergoods.com.

              PLEASE NOTE:  If you previously sent a note using this contact page we may not have received your message due to a technical glitch, and therefore we have been unable to respond to you.  We are extremely sorry and hope you have returned to see this message. Please re-try sending a message directly to the email address above.

              Contact Us
              If you do not receive a reply within
              48 hours, please resend your note
              directly to info@itascaleathergoods.com

              PLEASE NOTE: If you sent us a note using his contact page between Aug. 22, 2013 and Sept. 6, 2013, we did not receive your email address due to a technical glitch, and therefore we have been unable to respond to you. We are extremely sorry and hope you have returned to see this message. To be safe, please also put your email address in the message as well. Or send an email directly to info@itascaleathergoods.com .

              Lake George Factory Store

              37144 US 71 N.

              P.O. Box 228

              Lake George, MN 56458


              Shop Manager: Sam

              Phone: 218-699-3978

              Fax: 218-699-3154


              Hours: Monday - Friday 9:00-6:00 Central

              Frequently Asked Questions

              Do you make moccasins with a rubber sole?

              All of our footwear is made with a traditional soft leather sole. With the exception of the Yazoo slipper, they’re all intended for outdoor use. They’re much more rugged than people give them credit for and they have a terrific barefoot feel. Remember, for centuries the footwear used by Native Americans was the moccasin!

              Can I have my moccasins made or retrofitted with a rubber/hard sole?

              We do not offer this type of service.

              Are Itasca Moccasins intended for outdoor use?

              Yes, all of our moccasins are intended for outdoor use with the exception of the Yazoo slipper. Some people choose to use them as indoor house shoes but there’s no need to limit their use.

              Will the soft sole wear through?

              All footwear eventually wears out. We tell our customers that if you’re hard on traditional footwear, you’ll be hard on our moccasins. If you get good wear out of your normal footwear, you’ll also get good wear out of our soft-soled moccasins. In terms of manufacture, we typically reserve the thickest parts of the hide for use on our soles. That, in and of itself, provides longer wear. Furthermore, if you trade up to a premium leather such as buffalo you’ll extend the wearing life because those hides are thicker and, in our opinion, more rugged than cowhide. If you drag or scuff your feet when you walk, you’ll get shorter life out of moccasins. If you wear a pair of moccasins as your only shoe day in and day out, you’ll get shorter wear than you would if you rotate them with the rest of your footwear.

              How long should a pair of moccasins last?

              It’s impossible to give a one-size-fits-all type of answer because there are too many variables. We’ve had customers come back to our retail stores indicating they’ve had moccasins that have been in service for longer than a decade ... and we’ve had others who indicate significantly shorter wear. Unless you’re hard on shoes, you could expect to see a few to several years of wear. Lifespan is increased by using thicker hides (which we always strive to do), by using buffalo for the sole (which is an option you can make), by not scuffing or dragging your feet when you walk, and by not having them be your only pair of footwear. Wearing life is shortened by constant use, overuse when wet, and by scuffing or dragging feet. In the event you place a custom order and we contact you and try to move you away from a certain leather on the sole, it’s for a reason. Listen to our recommendations.

              Can moccasins be repaired?

              Some repairs are easy to make – particularly the toe area or the collar around the top of the ankle. Repairs to the sole are harder – because we need to deconstruct the entire shoe to get to the sole. Thus, to us, it’s harder than making a shoe from scratch.

              Do you offer a warranty?

              Because of the multitude of variables in leather and wearing patterns of the customer, we don’t offer a specific guarantee. However, we will always repair or replace defective moccasins. Plus, we strive to work with the customer if there’s premature wear on the moccasins. In our opinion, it’s good customer service to make our customers happy – and we run our business with that mantra at the forefront of all we do.

              Are Itasca Moccasins waterproof?

              Our moccasins are not specifically waterproof – however, we do sell two colors of buffalo nubuck which are waterproof – a dark brown and a light brown. Remember, though, that stitching will put holes in the leather and therefore we don’t officially call them waterproof.

              What happens if my moccasins get wet?

              If they get wet, simply let them air dry naturally and you’ll see no adverse effect. Do not force them dry in the dryer, a heat register, a heating vent or the microwave. You’ll potentially shrink the leathers as well as make them stiffer.

              Are soft-soled moccasins slippery?

              Our moccasins should not be more slippery than any other leather-soled shoe. We use numerous types of leather; some have a smoother finish while other leathers have heavy graining. If the leather you order is smooth, you might want to gently scuff up the sole on cement or blacktop – it’s just like a regular pair of leather-soled shoes in that regard. If you wear your moccasins only indoors on carpet, over time they will develop a shiny finish on the sole. If that happens, simply scuff them up outside to rough them up a bit. Finally, we have noticed that painted lines in cement (i.e. in the crosswalk) get slick when wet.

              Should I treat my moccasins?

              We recommend no specific treatment. If you use mink oils or other leather conditioners, you’ll likely darken the leathers – and you may get no significant benefit out of that treatment. If you’d like to treat your leathers with silicone sprays, you may do so, but again you may change the appearance or color of the leathers.

              Are Itasca Moccasin boots good for winter wear?

              The answer to this question is typically climate-based. Without a rubber sole, our boots don’t make great snow boots – leather, without a rubber sole, conducts cold quickly. Additionally, snow can easily tip over the side of shorter canoe-style moccasins if you’re on a sidewalk that’s not shoveled. In more moderate climates, moccasins make great winter footwear, especially when worn with a sock.

              Do you sell mukluks?

              No, we do not. There is a well-known Minnesota maker of mukluks, though, and they’ve got a great reputation. Use Google to find their contact information. They’re located in Ely MN.

              Do you make a high heeled moccasin?

              No. Are you kidding???

              Do you offer sandals or flip-flops?

              No. From a manufacturing standpoint, those are made with a hard sole or synthetic/rubber sole and we only work with soft sole construction.

              Do you sell a lined moccasin?

              In autumn 2012, we introduced our first lined Cota for women. The sole is full grain (in Peacock), the body of the shoe is genuine shearling, and the toe is cowhide suede (in Kiwi). They’re super cozy and perfect for fall and winter. If you like the style but would prefer other colors, you may order a custom pair by clicking on the “custom” tab. Additionally, we offer a premium slipper called the Yazoo. They’re also made of sheepskin and are the most comfortable slipper you’ve ever owned. The latter are made for indoor use only.

              Do you wear moccasins barefoot or with a sock?

              The answer is entirely up to you. Some people will start off barefoot, and then when the moccasin stretches a bit they’ll wear it with a sock. We often see moccasins worn barefoot in the summer when worn with shorts and then we’ll see them with socks in the fall and winter when worn with jeans or leggings. Because they lack a rubber sole, the moccasins breathe and are comfortable, even in summer. You might never wear flip-flops again!

              How comfortable are Itasca Moccasins?

              Oh my gosh – they’re incredibly comfortable. We’ve refined our styles for fit for more than 25 years. Most of our customers describe them as “a better version of barefoot” and it’s true. Some of the comfort is attributed to the soft sole, but a good part of the credit goes to the leathers we use. In particular, our premium leathers – buffalo, elk and moose are incredibly comfortable.

              I have bad feet ... can I wear moccasins?

              The easy answer is this: If you are comfortable barefoot, you’ll love the way our moccasins feel. If you always need arch support, you might have troubles with our moccasins without adding a supplemental arch support. We have had had numerous customers add an insole (such as Dr. Scholl’s) to create an arch support.

              Can I use my orthotics with moccasins?

              The answer isn’t easy due to the variability of the orthotic devices. Some thick orthotics make it feel like the moccasin doesn’t come up high enough on the foot. If that’s the case, we suggest that you order the Loosahatchie model rather than our basic Cota style. The sides of the Loosahatchie come up higher provide a better balance for thick orthotics.

              What benefit do I get by trading up to premium leathers?

              We consider our premium hides to be buffalo, elk and moose (and sheepskin for slippers or baby booties). Compared to cowhide, they tend to be softer and more supple and feel like they’re broken in the first time you put them on. They also tend to be more “interesting” hides. Buffalo has intense graining patterns and tends to be a bit thicker and is great for the soles of moccasins. Elk is the softest and most stretchy of the leathers and it’s more comfortable than anything else you’ll ever have on your feet. Moose is interesting and rare – and it feels silky smooth, and almost spongy. In our opinion, all of these premium hides are more durable than their cowhide counterparts, meaning better wear, longer wear. Yes, it does cost more ... but we feel it’s worth it.

              Why don’t you use leather laces for all of your moccasin styles?

              We typically use leather shoelaces for our boots, such as Obion, Hatchie, Meramec and Nokasippi models. We formerly used leather laces in all of our moccasins but customers frequently complained that they spontaneously came untied so we switched to nylon shoelaces to remedy the situation. If you’d prefer leather laces, you may request that your pair be made with them. There’s no extra charge for doing this. To request leather laces, simply indicate your request in the “comments” box on the check-out page.

              I’d like a knee-high boot but I don’t want to lace them up every time I wear them. Do you have a zipper option?

              Yes. We can add zippers to the Nokasippi boot; they’re placed on the inward side of each boot so that they’re optimally hidden. Some customers with a high instep haven’t had success putting them on without at least loosening the laces even with a zipper. We cannot guarantee 100% success but we’ll give you our best effort. There is a modest price increase with adding zippers.

              Why are moccasins good for baby?

              The superficial answer is that they’re the dang cutest footwear option that you’ll ever see. They’re crazy cute. But there’s a deeper answer. Some pediatricians recommend bare-footing for babies so that they can better develop balance; also the absence of a hard sole allows the musculature of the feet and legs to develop optimally. Our soft-soled moccasins are as close to barefoot as you can get and still offer the foot some protection and warmth.

              What is the “Earthing” or “Grounding” movement?

              There’s an emerging line of thought that there’s great benefit being physically connected to the earth. Digging deeper, it’s suggested that there’s physiological and psychological benefit from the transfer of electrons and electrical fields from the earth below directly into people – best accomplished when barefoot or lying unclothed on the ground. In the real world, barefoot isn’t always practical (or permitted) and the next best method of connection is via leather – without artificial plastics or rubber that act as insulators. Individuals who follow this lifestyle movement feel that there’s benefit to the circulatory system, immune system, and synchronization of biorhythms, along with a decrease of inflammation. People who follow Earthing guidelines may order any Itasca Moccasin without the synthetic foam pad so that the leather’s conductive properties (aided by natural sweat) can connect you with the earth below. See the Earthing page for more information.

              What happens if my moccasins get dirty?

              Realistically, all shoes get dirty – especially if they’re worn on dusty or muddy trails. Some leathers clean easier than others – such as full grain – you can easily wipe them down. Other leathers, such as suede, are more susceptible to dust and dirt. You could try a professional leather cleaning service. Some people will lightly sand their suede or even use a pencil eraser to remove dry dirt. For wet stains, some people have had luck using a dab of white vinegar on a dampened cloth and gently working the stain, taking care to feather the edges of the spot so as not to leave a ring. You may want to test your cleaning technique on an inconspicuous area of the moccasin.

              Will colors bleed onto the foot or sock?

              Any brightly colored shoe has risk of transferring the dye onto the foot or sock, and ours will as well. Of course, this diminishes over time and should ultimately stop transferring. The colors that have the biggest chance of bleeding are our teal suede and fuchsia suede. If dye gets on the foot, it washes off easily with bathing; if it transfers onto light colored socks it may or may not wash out during the laundering process.

              How should moccasins fit?

              If there’s anything at all to pay attention to it’s this: Start off with a snug (but not tight) fit. The leathers stretch and conform to the shape of the foot as you break them in. We recommend that the big (or longest) toe come right up to the front of the moccasin, even touching it. You want the sides to feel snug – like a thick pair of socks. Some leathers will break in as fast as a half hour of use; others will take a longer time to break in – perhaps several wearings. Of all of our leather options, elk has the most stretch – to the point we suggest sizing down at least a half size. Buffalo and moose are also supple hides and stretch nicely, followed by cowhides – some of which have significant stretch and others of which have virtually no stretch.

              Why do you recommend that the big (or longest) toe come up to the front of the moccasin?

              It’s half about the appearance and half about the fit. If your toe does not come all the way forward, the moccasin toe will curl up with use – giving an elfin appearance. From a fit perspective we recommend the toe go all the way forward; if your big toe is back more than an eighth of an inch or so, the moccasin is simply too big and will stretch out of shape as you break it in.

              What happens if I’ve got a wide foot?

              If your foot is modestly wide, we suggest that you trade up to an elk hide. It is somewhat more expensive but it has the stretch that’s needed to make the moccasin comfortable for you. And as an added benefit, the elk wears fantastically. If you’ve got a significantly wide foot we offer custom order options. You’ll be instructed to have a tracing done of your feet and submit it with your order. There’s no extra charge for this service and completed footwear is turned around to you in about ten days to two weeks.

              How accurate is your sizing scale?

              Historically, our moccasins ran quite large and most people sized down as a result. In autumn 2012, we’ve worked to adjust our sizing so that sizes fit more like your traditional footwear. The exception to that might be moccasins made from elk. By nature, elk hides are the most stretchy of all of the leathers and many customers will still size down a half size as a result.

              Do you offer half sizes or do you do full sizes only?

              Historically, we only offered full sizes but could accommodate any foot via our custom fit program. As of autumn 2012, we’ve introduced half sizes so that we don’t have such a need for custom work. Easier for you ... easier for us!

              Do you fit hard to fit feet?

              Yes! This is one of our core competencies and we’re really good at it! Many people’s feet are significantly different sized and we offer a custom fit program to address your needs. Also, if you’ve got a high instep, we can take that into account with our pattern-making. Please refer to the “custom” page for instructions. Oh, and best of all: There’s no additional charge for custom fit work and we turn around our work in about ten days to two weeks – not months and months.

              What about bunions?

              We know that bunions are an (unfortunate) fact of life for many people. We suggest ordering moccasins made from elk because of the natural stretchy nature of elk hide. They’re immediately comfortable and don’t cut or bind. If the bunion is severe enough, consider doing a custom order with a custom foot tracing. Please refer to the “ custom” page.

              Do you keep my foot tracings on file?

              Yes; for a period of at least five years we keep tracings on hand so that future orders can be placed without re-submitting foot tracings.

              What happens if I order a pair of moccasins and they don’t fit?

              If you order a custom pair with our foot tracing program, we’ll make you a pair that fits perfectly and we’ll stand by our work – satisfaction guaranteed or your money back. If you order a stock size of a regularly-stocked moccasin, you may return or exchange UNWORN moccasins for a different size.

              What shipping service do you use?

              In the Midwest, we almost always send our shipments via Spee-Dee Delivery. For deliveries outside the Midwest, we typically use US Mail.

              Do you ship internationally?

              Yes. International shipping costs will be confirmed at time of order and we’ll notify you of the shipping charges prior to sending out your moccasins. We will not indicate on customs paperwork that the moccasins are a “gift” to avoid tariffs. International shipments will typically go via US Mail.

              What is your return policy?

              We will accept unworn moccasins or unused leather goods from our basic stock offerings for return or exchange. If you order through our custom program, we do not accept returns for changing your mind or not liking the color combinations you’ve selected. If you order custom sizing via foot tracings, we guarantee fit and at our discretion we will alter or replace items that don’t fit right. In the unlikely event we’re not able to get it right, we’ll gladly refund your money. If you receive a pair of moccasins that’s defective or has abnormal wearing patterns beyond normal wear-and-tear, we’ll repair them or replace them at our discretion. The customer is responsible for shipping costs back to the factory store. See our full return and exchange policy.

              Where are Itasca Moccasins made?

              We proudly produce our handcrafted moccasins in the tiny town of Lake George MN, just a few miles east of Itasca State Park, the headwaters of the mighty Mississippi River. In fact, all manufacturing employees and owners reside in North Central Minnesota. Purchasing goods made in USA is important for our economy – we’re one of the few footwear companies still producing shoes in the US. We’re small, we’re independent, we’re “local” and we’re grateful for your business.

              Where are your retail stores located so that we can try them on in person?

              Our original factory store (open since 1986) is located in the tiny town of Lake George MN, just a few miles east of Itasca State Park. Our flagship store is located in the resort community of Crosslake MN, located in North Central MN. In April 2013 we plan to open our third retail store in Hayward WI.

              Do other stores other than your own stores carry Itasca Moccasins?

              Yes, select retailers do carry our moccasins and other leather goods. Information can be found under the “ retailers” link.

              If I’d like to sell your moccasins in my boutique, how do I go about it?

              Please contact us for information

              Payment Policy

              Itasca Leathergoods accepts Visa, MasterCard, Discover and American Express, and we accept payment via PayPal. Credit card purchases are secure. For PayPal purchases, you will be taken to their site for payment.

              Custom orders require full payment at time of order.

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              Return Policy


              Returns and Exchanges

              Full price stock items available on our website that are in unworn/unused condition may be returned or exchanged for 90 days. Refunds are for item cost but do not include shipping costs. Clearance items are non-refundable.

              Items ordered with custom leathers or custom color selections are not returnable. Such items are not a part of our normal stock and cannot be sold with our normal merchandise assortments in our stores.

              We guarantee a perfect fit for orders placed with custom foot tracings. If your moccasins do not fit, please return them and we will alter or replace them at our discretion to correct the fit. You are responsible for shipping costs back to the store but we will cover shipping charges when the altered or replaced pair is sent back to you. Please allow approximately two weeks for alternations.

              Defects or Damaged Goods

              Although rare, we occasionally manufacture a product with a defect that escapes our quality control review. We will repair or replace moccasins or other leather goods that are defective. Items that signify a defect include (but aren't limited to) mismatched leathers, a dropped stitch, cut or abrasion to the leather, or visible glue. Items that don't signify a defect include natural marks or blemishes to the leather, stains and dirt, damage from animal chewing, and normal wear and tear.

              In the event you experience premature wear-through on the sole of the moccasin, we may repair or replace it upon our discretion on a case by case basis. This offer for repair does not include normal wear and tear over the years.

              Repairs

              Some repairs are relatively easy; others are more difficult. For information about repairs, please call the factory store to discuss whether or not a repair is possible or advisable. Cost for repairs is handled on a case by case basis. Please call 218-699-3978 or send a request on our Contact page.

              Our mailing address

              Please visit our Contact page.

              Shipping Information

              Time Frames

              Most items are custom made just for you at time of order. All work is done at our facility in Lake George, MN. Please allow two weeks for your item(s) to be made.

              Domestic Shipping Service

              We use several carriers for shipping. In the Midwest we typically use Spee-Dee Delivery. For Deliveries outside the Midwest, we typically use US Mail. Alternate carriers include UPS or FedEx. The choice of shipping carrier is left to our discretion although we will try to honor special requests.

              Domestic Shipping Costs

              • Deliveries: Customers pay for shipping. Our standard shipping and handling rate for deliveries to destinations in the United States is $11.95.
              • Returns: Customers pay for shipping back to the Factory Store. Our address is 37144 US 71 N, PO Box 228, Lake George MN 56458.
              • If we repair or replace your moccasins, we'll pay the outgoing shipping costs for the pair that is returned to you.

              International shipping

              We offer international shipping via US Mail. Package tracking is typically not available. Typical transit time takes up to ten days - but passing through customs may delay total transit time. Shipments going to other countries are often subject to duties and taxes that are billed by your country's customs department upon arrival. Any duties, taxes or customs charges are the customer's responsibility. We will not indicate on customs paperwork that your purchase is a "gift" to avoid duty charges. Some countries have high incidence rates of theft of incoming packages and we will not be liable for any losses incurred.

              International Shipping Costs

              When placing an international order, please be aware that we will contact you via phone or email to confirm final shipping costs. Shipping charges for international deliveries are billed on a separate invoice from your original purchase and we will need credit card information to make that secondary sale. For your privacy and security, we will never request your credit card via email but instead will take the card number over the phone.

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