I bought a new iPad a few weeks ago. With it, I also purchased the tan leather Smart Cover.
I’m not too careful with my cover. I chose the leather cover thinking the more scuffed and damaged it got, the better. I wanted it to look worn. Unfortunately after only two weeks of use it did start to look worn — on one side only.
As you can see in the above photos the right side of the cover is darkened in the place I usually hold it while reading.
This asymmetry wouldn’t do. I had a wonderful, horrible idea: I’d stain the cover with coffee.
I prepared a double shot of coffee using fresh beans.
I had no idea whether this would work. But I reasoned at worst I’d end up with an interesting experiment and an utterly ruined Smart Cover. And even if it looked terrible, it would still function as a cover.
I got a brush and started brushing the coffee onto the cover.
(This is one of those rubber bristled brushes. For cooking. It’s all I could find when rooting through the kitchen drawers.)
Here’s the cover soaked in coffee. The first pass.
I let it sit for a few minutes and then dried it by dabbing gently with a paper towel. The excess coffee came off and it looked much darker.
I wasn’t too pleased with how it looked after the first pass. So I gave it a few more coats. Then, after drying it gently, I scrubbed it with an old tea-towel. This gave the cover a subtle texture and it looked more pleasing.
It still wasn’t right, though. And thinking that I might experiment some more I decided to scrub the cover with ground coffee. So I ground some coffee at the coarsest grind setting and tipped it onto the cover.
I rubbed the coffee into the cover using my fingers. At the time I wondered what on Earth this would actually achieve. Regardless, I continued.
I wiped away the excess coffee granules and saw that it didn’t turn out too bad. I actually liked the resulting cover more than the original. Success!
Here are some photos of the finished cover. It has dulled a little since taking these, but I still like it more than the original tan colour.