Thomas Wolfe may have written you can’t go home again, but Will Adler, the founder and creative director of Will Leather Goods, feels differently. Decades after leaving his hometown of Detroit, Adler has returned there to open the company’s most unusual retail shop. Located on the former site of the historic Tomboy Grocery Store at 4120 2nd Avenue, the 9,000-square-foot concept shop not only provides an ideal showcase for the company’s large selection of wallets and other leather goods, it boasts an art gallery, a café, local architectural treasures, and even a teepee.
“My family has been in the retail clothing business for 100 years,” says Adler, who founded his company 35 years ago. “But it was really my brother, who recently passed away, that prompted me to build this store. He ran a store here in Detroit called Man Oh Man, and before he died, he said to me that he felt Detroit really had the potential to become the Brooklyn of the Midwest. So after I decided to open the store, as an early influencer, I wanted to create a gathering place for the community. You can come in and see art, have coffee, and just hang out. What we’re already finding is that whole families are coming in, and not just because we sell something for everyone. One of the reason I put this 8-person teepee in the front of the store is that the teepee is the first American house, and it’s a place where you need to look at each other when you talk. I want to give people the unexpected experience.”
The store’s selection includes such items as burnished vintage leather baseballs and footballs, boxing gloves, antique-style hats, canvas-and-leather bags with lots of reinforced buckles and locks, as well as pieces made from all corners of the earth. “We embrace artisans from everywhere from Mexico to Africa to Japan,” says Adler. “Every product has its own story, and our sales associates have to memorize each of those stories.”
As Adler admits, getting people into a store has become more challenging in recent years. “We know people can just sit at home in their PJs and order cool stuff on the web, so my mission is to keep in-store shopping interesting,” he says. The new Detroit store, for example, offers a place where you can put together your own belt. It also offers free embroidery, embossing and logos on its products, as well as various versions of gift presentations. Meanwhile, in his flagship store in Eugene, Oregon, Adler has added items to its merchandise mix. “With the legalization of marijuana there, we discovered people were interested in lighters with leather cases,” he says.
One thing that has remained consistent for many years is Adler’s commitment to charity through his “Give Will” program. “When the business took off in the wholesale market – we now sell to 700 stores – I decided I wanted to give something back, and it had to be in a way that was inspiring to me,” says Adler. “So I decided to give the same backpack that I sell to Nordstrom to children, on which there’s a space for students to write both their names and their dreams. It’s a way to reach their heart, inspire their creativity, and stimulate a conversation about their future. In Detroit, I’ve committed to donating 50,000 bags over the next 24 months, including some to my old elementary school.”
Adler doesn’t have much time to enjoy his return home, as his San Francisco store, which was supposed to originally open this summer, is now scheduled to let customers in this month. “Because of the city’s strict rules regarding earthquakes, we had to do some retrofitting, which lasted four months. But we will be open by Thanksgiving!”
Our lifetime guarantee is a warranty against defects in materials (leather and hardware such as snaps, zippers, buckles, rivets, etc.) and workmanship. Our leather, as with all natural materials, will occasionally have unique characteristics such as: small scars, creases and variations in the color and are not considered defects. Validated warranty repairs are repaired or replaced at no charge.
Due to the nature of leather and vintage materials our warranty does not cover natural wear and tear from daily love. Worn edges or corners, natural fading and softening of materials is an expected occurrence. We guarantee the foundation of our product will hold your belongings safely. We find that patches and natural wear are a part of the story that unfolds as your product grows with you. One of a kind, Vintage and Found product may need to be patched or stitch due to the nature of vintage material. We charge between $35 and $75 depending on natural wear and tear or can recommend a local cobbler to expedite repair.
Exclusions and Limitations include shoes, hats, furniture, watches, jewelry, clothing, home goods, vintage product and FINAL SALE merchandise.
Maintain your favorite leather pieces regularly to ensure soft and supple leather. Leather can be cleaned and restored with a regimen of leather care products designed to clean, condition and protect. Leather Care can help maintain your product longer. Please see our Leather Care page for more information. We recommend conditioning your leather at a minimum of every 6 months. Learn more about how to care for your leather.
If you are in a dryer (hot or cold) climate please condition your product as soon as it feels less supple, dull or faded. Vegetable tanned leather when conditioned should feel slightly oiled and look rich. Similar to the nature of skin it needs to be moisturized as soon as it feels dry. We charge $25 + shipping for conditioning or head to a store for onsite conditioning for Free and the full Will Leather Goods experience.
Please Contact Us to receive a quote for non-warranty repairs.
Warranty Exclusions and Limitations
Any warranty claims associated with the below list are not considered manufacture defects and are not covered within our Lifetime Guarantee policy. At the discretion of Will Leather Goods, a fee may be incurred for repair.
Any warranty claims associated with the below list of merchandise categories do not fall within our Lifetime Guarantee policy.
1 Year Limited Warranty Exemptions
The following have a limited 1 year warranty that is valid from the date of purchase. At the discretion of Will Leather Goods, a fee may be incurred to the user to repair the merchandise if the warranty claims does not fall within the 1 year timeframe.
Have your receipt?
Please include it in your email request for return or bring it with you to any of our stores. This way we can reimburse your original purchase price to either your original method of payment or as a merchandise credit, or use it to help exchange your item.
Please let us know as much information as you can about your purchase so that we can locate a record of it. If we can't, we'll reimburse you with a Will Leather Goods gift card for the current selling price of the item or replace your item. To help ensure fairness to all customers, we do require a receipt in certain situations. Please see our Special Conditions for details
If you purchased Will Leather Goods merchandise from one of our Valued Retailers, please contact them directly to facilitate a return or exchange.
To help protect our customers and make sure every return or exchange is dealt with fairly, we reserve the right to not refund the following,
-Will Leather Goods is not responsible for any missing packages or COD
-Customer is responsible for shipping cost
-We reserve the right to refuse delivery of packages received without a Return Authorization
-All return and exchange requests must be received within 30 days of purchase either online or from our Will Leather Goods retail locations.
-Proof of purchase is required to validate a return or exchange
-If you purchased an item from our sale page, these items are eligible for exchange or store credit only, unless marked FINAL SALE online. SAMPLE SALE product is FINAL SALE
-All returned merchandise must be in new, unworn, and original condition
-We have the right to charge a restocking fee of 15%, if product is not returned in original condition.
-Monogrammed merchandise is not eligible for a refund or exchange. All sales are final.
-Items that were not purchased directly from Will Leather Goods (such as items purchased at thrift stores, online sellers or garage sales)
-Items with a missing label or an item that has been defaced
-On rare occasions, based on the nature of prior transactions
-Without a receipt and a valid ID in our stores
-Items that have been soiled or contaminated, until they have been cleaned
-Items lost or damaged due to fire, flood or natural disaster
|Pant Size||Men's Size||Women's Size|
|11" (1st Hole)||15.5" (1st Hole)|
|9.75" (3rd Hole)||14" (3rd Hole)|
|8" (5th Hole)||12.5" (5th Hole)|
|20" (1st Hole)||23.75" (1st Hole)|
|18.25" (3rd Hole)||22" (3rd Hole)|
|17" (5th Hole)||19.75" (5th Hole)|
The monogram has existed since 350 B.C., but came into popularity as steam ships started to cross the Atlantic to help identify the trunks and luggage of the travelers. Today, the monogram remains a functional identifier, while also lending personal style to your leather goods.
Personalize your product or gift with monogramming in either our small serif font (1/4") or our large sans-serif font (1/2") shown above. We use traditional heat stamping to emboss into our vegetable tanned leather.