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Leather is a material created through the tanning of hides[?], pelts[?] and skins of animals. Leather was a very important clothing material, and its other uses were legion. Together with wood, leather formed the basis of much ancient technology. Leather with the fur still attached is simply called fur.

Today, most leather is made of cow hides, but many exceptions exist. Lamb and deer skin are used for soft leather in more expensive apparels. The leather made from some more exotic skins has during different times in history been considered very beautiful. For this reason certain snakes and crocodiles have been hunted to near extinction.

In the 1990s, farming of ostriches and emus for their meat became popular. As a side product, ostrich leather became a fad for a while. Ostrich leather has a characteristic "goose bump" look because of the large follicles from where the feathers were.

In Thailand, sting ray leather are used for wallets and belts like regular leather. Sting ray leather is as tough and durable as hard plastic, even a metal file cannot leave a scratch. The leather is often dyed black and covered with tiny round bumps with a natural pattern from the back ridge of the animal that is dyed white to highlight as decoration on the products.

Leather fetishism is the name popularly used to describe a fetishistic attraction to people wearing leather, or in certain cases, to the garments themselves. The Scorpions are a rock group known for wearing leather clothing.

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