Native hide tanning is a long, laborious and difficult job. But the end result is a product of the highest quality. I'd like our customers to understand why moccasins made from home-tanned moosehide are more expensive than those made from commercially tanned hide.
The first step is to hunt, kill, gut and skin a moose, and cut up and preserve the meat. Next the hide is immersed in a fast flowing cold stream and weighed down with heavy stones. After three days, the hide (it may weigh over 100 lbs) is draped over a large log where the meat and hair is scraped off. When that's completed, the hide is soaked overnight then stretched tightly on a frame to dry for a few days.
A solution of the animal's brains mixed with warm water is prepared, then worked into both sides of the hide over and over while the hide is being further scraped and massaged. The final step step is to hang the hide on conical frame and smoke both sides with coals of rotten wood for a day to colour and waterproof it.
This description is very simplified. It's more than a week of hard work for two people to tan a moosehide.