Nestled amongst similar fetish shops in the notorious Schöneberg neighborhood, Butcherei Lindinger appears at first glance just another store offering kink and erotica to the gay district of Berlin. Upon closer inspection you will find artisans in the leather trade, crafting fantastical couture for private clients. Couture in its realest sense – made to order, and limited only by the specifications, imagination, and budget of the patron.
Butcherei Lindinger contains all of the usual trappings of any kink shop; a vast array of lubes, ball gags and restraints, but there is more going on here than meets the eye. The owner and leather master Marc Lindinger creates custom pieces out of his cellar atelier below the shop floor. With the support of his business partner Oliver Eiermann, Lindinger crafts detailed fetish-wear for his private clients. Some mundane – basic leather chaps – and others elaborate, like the designs he works on for the “leather daddy of luxury,” Peter Marino.
The busy season for the shop culminates in Christopher Street Day, similar to the United States Gay Pride Week. Berlin is home to the largest CSD celebration, commonly referred to now as Berlin Pride, and also hosted the very first CSD in June of 1972. Occurring from June through August, parades, parties, events, and LGBT social awareness campaigns take place all over Europe. The leather scene in Germany is tinged with hyper recognition of where this facet of kink culture started, and how it was affected by WWII, social mores and finally, acceptance. To this day Berlin remains a mecca of sexual consciousness with four different CSD festivals taking place each year.
This subculture of kink, known as leathermen, meets its maker in the hands of Lindinger. Having began his training in Nuremburg, Lindinger originally studied traditional men’s tailoring, before moving onto to the more elaborate sartorial designs of men’s costume for the opera houses in Stuttgart and Zurich. He was always drawn to leather, and its special abilities and restraints as a material. Leather has the ability to mold to the body beautifully, but is unforgiving to a sloppy seamstress, revealing any misplaced stitch or needle mark.
In a modern fashion industry where details like pleating, shirring, and quilting are done by machine; the atelier constructs every aspect by hand with just four employees. The shop uses only leathers from tanneries that have certifiable processing techniques, and are free of toxic chemicals or dyes. Requests for custom orders come in via email, through private fittings, and often times from couples visiting the shop together to realize their fantasies. At Butcherei Lindinger all of your wildest dreams can come true.
Images from Butcherei Lindinger.