|This article is about a mod.|
Leather is the tanned hide of an animal, and is a fairly versatile material. Leather can be used to make bags, quivers, backpacks, waterskins, clothing, shields, armor, and decorations, all at a leather works. Leather crafts are made at a craftsdwarf's workshop. Although most of these items can be made from other materials, it is the only sensible option for making quivers and backpacks (the only alternative being adamantine), meaning some source of leather is almost essential for a well-rounded military. Plenty of leather can usually be acquired through trade with dwarves and humans.
Leatherwing bats can be used as a renewable source of leather. A dwarf with the Shearing job can be ordered to 'shear' a leatherwing bat at a farmers workshop producing a single stack of raw hide and causing no harm to the beast.
Small amounts of leather can also be found near groups of cavern-dwelling Animal people. Obtaining leather this way is rather dangerous, as these creatures are generally hostile to dwarves and are often armed with blowguns shooting lethally poisonous darts.
Making leather requires a tanner's shop, a raw hide or skin from an animal, and a dwarf with the tanning labor turned on. Rotten hides or skin cannot be tanned. The human and dwarven caravans usually sell various boxes of leather, which can be useful if few butcherable animals inhabit the map. One unrotten hide yields one "unit" of leather - regardless of whether the animal is a kitten or an elephant. The value of the leather depends on the critter it comes from; leather made from the skins of rare or dangerous animals can be quite valuable. Tanners turn a skin from severed part of an animal into the full-size leather.
Dwarven tanners have a skill unknown to mere humans in that they can make the softest skin of the tiniest animal equally hardy as that of the most heavily protected live creature. Whether they make flimsy skin into a rock-like substance or tough hide silky and supple remains a mystery.
A dwarf with the Tanning labour can improve leather at a tannery using oil to produce Tough Leather. Tough leather can then be further improved using studs made of either Vermin, teeth or horn. Studded leather can then be improved a final time by taking several peices of studded leather and stiching them together with any thread producing Lamellar Leather.