Just got an 1920's vintage Deardorff with the original red leather bellows. (or what I think is the original bellows). Little wear but it had 8 pinholes in the corners, that I have already patched up from the inside.
I am looking for information on some of the preferred ways of treating the bello ws so it will last. It is a nice red that I would like to take down a touch to a more burgundy color, while at the same time enhancing its lifespan. Inside the bellows it has a 'linen' type of cloth in a faded blue color. Anyone out there k now if I can use a black dye such as Kiwi skuff cote to make it black without ha rming the cloth or any adhesive used to attach it to the leather? While at the s ame time helping to preserve the leather from the inside?
I have used Mink Oil on newer leather bellows with good luck but don't know if t his will help the older ones. Any experienced users information will be apprecia ted. I want it to look nice, but above all, I want to photograph with it.