Fixing a Water Stain on a Leather Madewell Bag

Purchasing a Madewell bag has been on my lust list (this is a thing right?) for a while. I *almost* bought on a few years back but there was a rumor of layoffs at my company and I something told me to hold off and save my money. I ended up getting laid off and switched to money-survival mode.

Flash forward 2 years and I am back at my same job and was in need of a new bag. Madewell had some great sales over the holidays so I finally got my dream bag and even got it monogrammed. I take very good care of it and use a leather protectant which has saved me from a few spills and walking miles in rainy NYC.

This weekend, I was at dinner with my parents when my dad said ‘what’s on the bottom of your purse??’. I thought it was a shadow, but quickly realized the bottom of my bag was covered in water.

A leaky water bottle inside my bag was the culprit.

Removing a Water Stain from a Leather Madewell Bag | Style & the Suburbs

I knew I just had to wait for it to dry to see the damage. I let it sit overnight but my bag was still damp to the touch in the morning. I realized the protectant on the outside of the leather was probably trapping the water inside the leather so I used a cleaner to remove it and then set my bag in front of a fan for a few hours. This really helped dry it out.

Once it seemed totally dry, there was still a faint water mark line. I used a leather cleaner to clean the spot which was mostly from the bottom seam up the back of the bag. Once the cleaner evaporated, I recovered with protectant. There is still a faint line but probably wouldn’t be noticed by anyone but me.

Removing a Water Stain from a Leather Madewell Bag | Style & the SuburbsRemoving a Water Stain from a Leather Madewell Bag

I read through a lot of advice online, including on the Madewell website,  but none seemed overly helpful. My advice if you do spill water on a bag is to remove all protectants and put it in front of a fan to dry ASAP. I regret not doing this sooner!

Do you have any tips for hiding a water stain on a bag?


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