Learn to make leather goods: Leather Buying Guide Pt. 1 — Gold Bark Leather

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How To Start Leatherworking As A Hobby

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Published on July 23rd, 2015 |
by makesupply





Leatherworking is the perfect hobby. It’s a blend of physical and mental focus that is unique. It’s both artistic and industrious requiring strength and finesse. If you have toyed with the idea of making your own leather goods as a hobby I can help you get started on that path!

“What Kind Of Leather Goods Do I Want To Make?”

Leatherworking is a deceptively accessible hobby to pick up. Stroll into your local hobby or craft shop and you are bound to find at least some entry level supplies. Websites like Tandy Leather specialize in beginner tool kits which promise to get you started. The problem is these kits are often poor quality tools and full of things you will never use.

We recommend taking a step back and doing some planning before your first tool purchase. It’s good to have an initial project or direction you are interested in pursuing. This way you will only acquire a baseline amount of tools which saves you money and provide you will an idea of what else you will need to buy going forward.

Inspiration for projects can be found online in many places. Browsing Pinterest is a great place to start because you can find a variety of styles all in one search. Start taking note of the attributes of the leather goods that peak your interest. Do they share a common theme? Maybe they are all a western tooling style with intricate designs imprinted on the surface. Maybe they are reminiscent of something you would see in a Parisian luxury goods store. Maybe they are something you can show off at the next Renaissance Faire. The list goes on! If you notice a common theme in what you like it makes the next step a little easier.

Learning Leather Lingo! (LLL)

Leathercraft, like every other hobby, has its fair share of lingo you will need to learn. This will be for tools, leather, and techniques. The best way to start familiarizng yourself with this world is by reading…. a lot. In the past one would suggest buying a bunch of books but this is 2015. We will learn from messageboards!

The first place you should start browsing is the Leatherworker.net Forums. This is probably the most expansive Leatherworking community on the internet. It is heavily slanted towards a western style of leatherwork (think tooling, saddlery, etc) but has information on almost every style. You will live by the Search bar on this forum. I have been browsing a part of this forum for many years and still use the Search when I have a question I am interested in researching. There are other smaller communities out there that also provide great information.

Spend time just reading through the posts even if you dont understand exactly what you are reading. Register an account and ask questions in the beginner forum. If you see someone post pictures of a project that resembles what you want to build, ask them what kind of tools and materials they used. This process will help you build a mental inventory of the tools you will need to purchase as well as the techniques you will need to learn.

Taking The Dive

At this point I hope you have spent a little time browsing through the Leatherworking world and maybe picked up a few insights. If this is still something that you think you want to try out it’s best to just take the dive and get started. Do not be afraid to mess up or purchase the wrong version of something. You will mess up and you will purchase incorrect items. I’ve been at this for years and still mess up to this day. When it comes to tool purchases I would suggest going with what you can afford. Avoid the kits if you can but if not, its better than not starting at all. There is one item you don’t want to skimp on and thats your diamond awl. At minimum a C.S. Osborne Awl will do the trick. The “beginner awls” you get from Tandy Leather are very dull and dull blades are extremely dangerous.

My Own Journey

I thought I would end this write up with how I started my own journey in Leatherworking. Like most people I was searching for a new hobby and was initially drawn to Woodworking. Living in a small apartment I knew that wasn’t feasible. I stumbled across an old Leatherworking article online and started doing some research. It looked like fun to make something so useful and beautiful with your hands I was immediately hooked on the idea. Taking my own advice from above I set out to find a community of Leatherworkers I could learn from. I joined the Leatherworker.net forum as well as smaller community with more of a focus on leather goods as fashion. That was on a forum called Superfuture in a single thread called Leathercrafting Creations: PYC. I had an idea of the goods I wanted to make in my head and this content was a perfect fit. While much smaller at the time, I have to this date read all 130 pages of this thread multiple times. Again, learning the lingo and applying that knowledge to my purchases and techniques.

In Conclusion

Instead of providing a catch all step-by-step guide on how to purchase tools I wanted to provide you with a mindset for starting your own way. There are so many different facets to Leatherworking I think it would be disingenuous to lump them all into one specific path. Get an idea of what you want to create, do a little bit of background research so you can make smart purchases, get started and learn by doing!











Everything you need to know to start leatherworking

This story has been updated. It was originally published on February 19th, 2021.

If you’ve fallen into the leatherworking ASMR TikTok vortex, you might be thinking about getting into the craft yourself. After all, leather is just very expensive paper, right? Just cut it up, glue it together, and voilá! You have a nice wallet you can brag to your friends about. What more is there to it?

A lot, actually, which is why getting started can feel a bit overwhelming. Worry not—whether your first attempt is a notebook cover or some fringey pair of chaps, we’ve collected all the basics you’ll need to know.

Pick a project, any project. (It’ll be ugly and that’s fine.)

It sounds obvious, but before you buy anything, think about what you want to make. Logic dictates going for something simple, like a dog collar, a wallet, a card-holder, or even a keychain strap. But if you want to shoot for the stars, experts recommend otherwise.

“If you have something you dream of making, go for it,” says Justin Hagan, founder of Gold Bark Leather and Restwell goods. “The first project I made was a purse for my spouse. It turned out really ugly—it ended up lumpy and the rivets were completely smashed, but I don’t regret doing it.”

[Related: Leatherworking tips from a modern-day cowgirl]

If that sounds too scary, Rachel Corry, author of The Sandalmaking Workshop and founder of Rachel Sees Snail Shoes in Portland, Oregon, recommends you start by modifying something you already love. Try fixing a backpack or making a simplified version of your wallet.

“Make it a little bit different, and a little bit better. This way you don’t have a million design issues to solve,” she says.

As with any other craft, there’s a learning curve to leatherworking. As easy as TikTok videos can make it seem, you’ll need to manage your expectations and make peace with the fact that your first project will most likely look like crap. And that’s totally ok.

“I still make ugly leather goods,” Hagan says. “Different leathers and different designs take time to figure out.”

Get some tools

Google “leatherworking tools” and you may find yourself lost in an endless list of awl blades, chisels, mallets, edgers, groovers, and knives—all with different sizes, qualities, and price tags. It can be intimidating, but some of those tools are designed for highly specific, advanced techniques that you likely won’t use as a newbie anyway.

Stick to the basics and get a toolbox that includes a good utility knife or rotary cutter, a diamond chisel, a scratch awl, needles, and thread. Complete your set with a cutting mat, metal rulers and squares, some sponges, and a rubber or wooden hammer—any other type of hammer can damage the leather and will damage your tools. Hagan also suggests other supplies such as canvas cloth, sandpaper, dye, finish, and glue, though the types of each you’ll need will depend on the specific project you’re making.

There are several retailers online you can check out. Tandy is one of the big ones, but you can also consider Weaver Leather Supply. If you want something a little more professional, head to Barry King Tools. Of course, Amazon also carries a wide range of leatherworking tools, so you can browse there as well.

[Related: Build the three-legged stool you didn’t know your home needed]

When it comes to prices, it’s better to start with implements that are basic but still of good quality, so don’t splurge on the best awl blade yet. As you start taking on more difficult projects, you’ll grow out of your beginner tools and learn exactly where you need to invest.

Learn (and practice) basic skills

You’ve definitely done some cutting and gluing in your lifetime. Needless to say, cutting and gluing animal skin is quite different. There are wonderful sources of knowledge for all things leather where you can pick up these and other more advanced skills.

Gold Bark’s blog offers instructions and videos on how to begin, YouTube is full of channels dedicated to leatherwork education, and Reddit has prolific communities under r/Leathercraft and r/Leatherworking.

But on top of cutting and gluing, you’ll need to learn some stitching. This is typically the first skill that’ll take you some time to figure out, but having the right tools helps a lot Hagan says. Using a stitching groover and a diamond chisel, which are relatively inexpensive, can be quite helpful when it comes to getting clean stitching.

Know your supplies

Newsflash—leather is not cheap. What’s worse is that just buying it can be complicated. There’s a lot of technical jargon involved, and being mindful of the source can be a lost cause, because there’s virtually no sustainable leather production in the US, Corry says.

There’s also no easy guide as to what kind of leather you’ll need for each project. It’s likely that, at some point, you’ll end up getting a really heavy, stiff skin that’ll turn the beautiful satchel you had in mind into an unusable, over-designed leather box.

You can save yourself some grief by skipping the online shopping and going to an actual store. Corry recommends bringing a sample piece with you as a reference and trying to match the thickness, texture, and pliability. Those little clippings that sometimes come attached to shoes, a belt, or a wallet work beautifully.

[Related: Leather doesn’t have to come from animals]

One thing you need to keep in mind is that leather is not a manufactured material, so it’ll vary—a lot. The size and qualities of hides (the entire piece of leather from a single animal) differ depending on where they come from, and each one has different levels of thickness depending on the part you’re using.

It may seem like a lot, but if you can afford it, Hagan recommends getting an entire side (half of a hide), which you should be able to find for about $120.

“Early on, it’s helpful to use the same leather so you can just focus on your skill,” he says. “Different leathers respond differently to dyes, your stitching, or edge finishings, for example, so it’s really hard to figure out the cause of an error if you’re using a bunch of different leathers.”

Finally, it’s important to know that unlike other crafts or hobbies, there’s an ethical aspect involved in leatherworking, and people should keep in mind what they’re actually working with.

“Beginners need to understand that leather is from an animal, and so it should be used very resourcefully,” Corry says.

Take a shortcut

All this information may be a lot to take in, so if you just want to go straight to trying out a new hobby, you can skip the planning and just get a leatherworking kit.

Some experts online don’t recommend this, as you may find yourself with tools you won’t have a use for. But this is also an easy way to find out if you actually enjoy making yourself a new wallet, or if you just like watching other people do it.

Tandy and Weaver Leather Supplies carry some inexpensive options that include pre-cut pieces, instructions and essentials like thread and snaps, but they don’t come with any tools. Gold Bark’s journal cover or slim wallet kits will set you back $150, but they include almost everything you’ll need to put your project together, including a self-healing cutting mat.

As with any hobby, the main point is to learn and have fun, so don’t get discouraged if you find you’re not ready to make your own luggage set yet. Even the simplest gift card holder will earn you well-deserved bragging rights.

Leather courses, craft kits and handcrafted gifts


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How to Start a Leather Business

Start a leather business by following these 10 steps:

You have found the perfect business idea, and now you are ready to take the next step. There is more to starting a business than just registering it with the state. We have put together this simple guide to starting your leather business. These steps will ensure that your new business is well planned out, registered properly and legally compliant.

Check out our How to Start a Business page.

STEP 1: Plan your business

A clear plan is essential for success as an entrepreneur. It will help you map out the specifics of your business and discover some unknowns. A few important topics to consider are:

Luckily we have done a lot of this research for you.

What are the costs involved in opening a leather business?

It is possible to get started in a leather business for a relatively low overhead, depending on your focus. If you are selling some pre-crafted items online from your home, you will need to spend most of your money on building up your stock. Handbags, purses, gloves, and smaller leather items can be purchased wholesale and stored in your house or other storage options until being shipped to customers, as the orders are received. You will need some sort of forum for reaching customers, such as a website or access to online retail options, such as eBay or Poshmark, for example.

If you choose to operate out of a storefront, you will need to factor in the costs for rent, utilities, and business insurance. Although this will raise your overhead costs, you may reach more customers, depending on the location of the store.

If you are creating your own leather products or offering service and repairs for leather goods, you will need to add the costs for materials and equipment, such as an industrial sewing machine, leather needles, cutting tools, and patterns.

What are the ongoing expenses for a leather business?

Most ongoing expenses will pertain to materials and finished resale products, especially if you operate online. A store location will add rent, utilities, internet and phone and some advertising.

Who is the target market?

Your target market will more than likely consist of customers who have purchased a leather items before. Although leather is popular, many consumers will shy away from animal products. Therefore, its critical to attract customers who appreciate durability, rugged, yet refined quality, and the look and feel of leather products. Some items can be reasonably priced, but most of your goods and services will tend to be priced below luxury, yet above department store numbers.

How does a leather business make money?

A leather business makes its money from the sale of leather and leather products as well as the repairing of leather goods, such as shoes and apparel, such as purses, suitcases, or briefcases.

How much can you charge customers?

Client pricing will depend greatly on what you’re selling and offering. Research competition thoroughly to see where your price points will fall. Some high end leather bags will range upwards of five figures, whereas leather glove repairs may only fetch $10-20. Understand what you’re offering and charge accordingly.

How much profit can a leather business make?

Depending on what you sell and what services you offer, you can see earnings in the $30,000-40,000 range, especially if you are able to keep your overhead costs low.

How can you make your business more profitable?

Offer related products, such as leather cleaning and care oils and solutions. Sell these items in conjunction with your orders and many customers will continue to purchase the products, even without buying more leather goods. If you are an accomplished leather worker, offer specialty designs and custom builds. You can charge a premium price for your services, as it will be an additional source of revenue, and not the primary moneymaker.

What will you name your business?

Choosing the right name is important and challenging. If you don’t already have a name in mind, visit our How to Name a Business guide or get help brainstorming a name with our Leather Business Name Generator

If you operate a sole proprietorship, you might want to operate under a business name other than your own name. Visit our DBA guide to learn more.

When registering a business name, we recommend researching your business name by checking:

It’s very important to secure your domain name before someone else does.

STEP 2: Form a legal entity

The most common business structure types are the sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company (LLC), and corporation.

Establishing a legal business entity such as an LLC or corporation protects you from being held personally liable if your leather business is sued.

Read our Guide to Form Your Own LLC


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Have a Professional Service Form your LLC for You

Two such reliable services:

You can start an LLC yourself and pay only the minimal state LLC costs or hire one of the Best LLC Services for a small, additional fee.

Recommended: You will need to elect a registered agent for your LLC. LLC formation packages usually include a free year of registered agent services. You can choose to hire a registered agent or act as your own.

STEP 3: Register for taxes

You will need to register for a variety of state and federal taxes before you can open for business.

In order to register for taxes you will need to apply for an EIN. It’s really easy and free!

You can acquire your EIN for free through the IRS website, via fax, or by mail. If you would like to learn more about EINs and how they can benefit your LLC, read our article, What is an EIN?.

Learn how to get an EIN in our What is an EIN guide or find your existing EIN using our EIN lookup guide.

Small Business Taxes

Depending on which business structure you choose, you might have different options for how your business will be taxed. For example, some LLCs could benefit from being taxed as an S corporation (S corp).

You can learn more about small business taxes in these guides:

There are specific state taxes that might apply to your business. Learn more about state sales tax and franchise taxes in our state sales tax guides.

STEP 4: Open a business bank account & credit card

Using dedicated business banking and credit accounts is essential for personal asset protection.

When your personal and business accounts are mixed, your personal assets (your home, car, and other valuables) are at risk in the event your business is sued. In business law, this is referred to as piercing your corporate veil.

Additionally, learning how to build business credit can help you get credit cards and other financing in your business’s name (instead of yours), better interest rates, higher lines of credit, and more.

Open a business bank account
  • This separates your personal assets from your company’s assets, which is necessary for personal asset protection.
  • It also makes accounting and tax filing easier.

Recommended: Read our Best Banks for Small Business review to find the best national bank, credit union, business-loan friendly banks, one with many brick-and-mortar locations, and more.

Open net-30 accounts

When it comes to establishing your business credit, net-30 vendors are considered the way to go. The term “net-30,” which is popular among vendors, refers to a business credit arrangement where the company pays the vendor within 30 days of receiving goods or services.

Net-30 credit terms are often used for businesses that need to obtain inventory quickly but do not have the cash on hand.

Besides establishing business relationships with vendors, net-30 credit accounts get reported to the major business credit bureaus (Dun & Bradstreet, Experian Business, and Equifax Business Credit). This is how businesses build business credit so they can qualify for credit cards and other lines of credit.

Get a business credit card
  • This helps you separate personal and business expenses by putting your business’ expenses all in one place.
  • It also builds your company’s credit history, which can be useful to raise money and investment later on.

Recommended: Read our guide to find the best small business credit cards.

STEP 5: Set up business accounting

Recording your various expenses and sources of income is critical to understanding the financial performance of your business. Keeping accurate and detailed accounts also greatly simplifies your annual tax filing.

STEP 6: Obtain necessary permits and licenses

Failure to acquire necessary permits and licenses can result in hefty fines, or even cause your business to be shut down.

State & Local Business Licensing Requirements

Certain state permits and licenses may be needed to operate a leather business. Learn more about licensing requirements in your state by visiting SBA’s reference to state licenses and permits.

Most businesses are required to collect sales tax on the goods or services they provide. To learn more about how sales tax will affect your business, read our article, Sales Tax for Small Businesses.

For information about local licenses and permits:

Certificate of Occupancy

A leather business is generally run out of a storefront. Businesses operating out of a physical location typically require a Certificate of Occupancy (CO).  A CO confirms that all building codes, zoning laws and government regulations have been met.

  • If you plan to lease a location:
    • It is generally the landlord’s responsibility to obtain a CO.
    • Before leasing, confirm that your landlord has or can obtain a valid CO that is applicable to a leather business.
    • After a major renovation, a new CO often needs to be issued. If your place of business will be renovated before opening, it is recommended to include language in your lease agreement stating that lease payments will not commence until a valid CO is issued.
  • If you plan to purchase or build a location:
    • You will be responsible for obtaining a valid CO from a local government authority.
    • Review all building codes and zoning requirements for your business’ location to ensure your leather business will be in compliance and able to obtain a CO.

STEP 7: Get business insurance

Just as with licenses and permits, your business needs insurance in order to operate safely and lawfully. Business Insurance protects your company’s financial wellbeing in the event of a covered loss.

There are several types of insurance policies created for different types of businesses with different risks. If you’re unsure of the types of risks that your business may face, begin with General Liability Insurance. This is the most common coverage that small businesses need, so it’s a great place to start for your business.

Learn more about General Liability Insurance.

Another notable insurance policy that many businesses need is Workers’ Compensation Insurance. If your business will have employees, it’s a good chance that your state will require you to carry Workers’ Compensation Coverage.

STEP 8: Define your brand

Your brand is what your company stands for, as well as how your business is perceived by the public. A strong brand will help your business stand out from competitors.

If you aren’t feeling confident about designing your small business logo, then check out our Design Guides for Beginners, we’ll give you helpful tips and advice for creating the best unique logo for your business.

How to promote & market a leather business

As mentioned above, create an online presence through social media and a website. This allows you to garner customers from all over the world, which will help your name and reputation exponentially grow. You might also want to gain membership to leather guilds and organizations. The connections created should be beneficial to both parties. Also, visit crafting conventions and trade shows help show off your wares and abilities.

How to keep customers coming back

Reputation is so important. Make sure you’re prompt with your work or shipments and always maintain a professional and courteous attitude with customers and vendors. You should also strive to offer your customers the best designs and products. Avoid becoming complacent with your work, as customers will flee from stagnation.

Still unsure about what kind of business you want to start? Check out the latest Small Business Trends to help inspire you.

STEP 9: Create your business website

After defining your brand and creating your logo the next step is to create a website for your business.

While creating a website is an essential step, some may fear that it’s out of their reach because they don’t have any website-building experience. While this may have been a reasonable fear back in 2015, web technology has seen huge advancements in the past few years that makes the lives of small business owners much simpler.

Here are the main reasons why you shouldn’t delay building your website:

  • All legitimate businesses have websites – full stop. The size or industry of your business does not matter when it comes to getting your business online.
  • Social media accounts like Facebook pages or LinkedIn business profiles are not a replacement for a business website that you own.
  • Website builder tools like the GoDaddy Website Builder have made creating a basic website extremely simple. You don’t need to hire a web developer or designer to create a website that you can be proud of.

Using our website building guides, the process will be simple and painless and shouldn’t take you any longer than 2-3 hours to complete.

Other popular website builders are: WordPress, WIX, Weebly, Squarespace, and Shopify.

STEP 10: Set up your business phone system

Getting a phone set up for your business is one of the best ways to help keep your personal life and business life separate and private. That’s not the only benefit; it also helps you make your business more automated, gives your business legitimacy, and makes it easier for potential customers to find and contact you.

There are many services available to entrepreneurs who want to set up a business phone system. We’ve reviewed the top companies and rated them based on price, features, and ease of use.

Starting Leather Craft – What to Think About

So you’re excited about starting leather craft, and thinking about jumping in and making some pieces; awesome! But, where do you begin and will you really like it? Here are a few things to think through when you’re just getting started:

 

We might get into a new hobby thinking it’s going to be the coolest thing ever, so we get all the best gear, then realize it wasn’t as exciting as we thought – now we’ve sunk a lot of cash into things we won’t use. If leather craft ends up being something you really love, great! It could last a lifetime.

Give yourself time to explore. A good approach would be to buy only the minimal amount of leather tools to try the next level of craft that is new to you (better to spend $50 to learn if you like it than $200, or $2,000). For example, maybe start on a simple belt (that’s what I did). Click here if you’d like to see the detailed guide I wrote about leather working tools.

As a total beginner, I got a few tools including a leather belt blank, hole punch, skiving tool, edger, and a burnisher (don’t worry, we’ll get into these in more detail, for now all you need to know is that it’s only a handful of tools). It gave me the opportunity to get a feel for the leather, how it worked in the hands, the feel of the tools, and the sense if I enjoyed the work. Since I didn’t invest a lot, no pressure if I didn’t like it.

I ended up enjoying it, and that was great, since I got even more excited to learn about and get additional tools to try out new things (leather dye, finisher, buckles, riveting). I ended up with a wearable belt that surprising to me haha, looked like an actual belt – pretty cool! 🙂 Also, I had a tiny bit of experience now that helped guide choosing the next tools. You can do the same, start small. If it fells good, take the next step and use the experience you’ve gained to help. It will be a much more rewarding journey since you’ll feel more confident and be more informed.

Note: Buying low-quality tools could risk turning you off to leather work altogether – since we’re just beginning we don’t really know the difference between our lack of skill vs. a poorly crafted tool, and can easily get frustrated. A good (not necessarily expensive) tool makes all the difference in feel and final quality, and can let you focus on getting better (instead of being limited by the tools). For a guide to the specific tools I like the most, click here.

Starting Leather Craft – Leather Making Tools

 

The leather tools you’ll initially look for differ based on the type of leather work you want to try. For example a belt won’t require stitching (you can of course include it if you’d like), whereas a small wallet will likely require stitching and the associated tools for marking/making holes, needles, thread, stitching pony to hold it while sewing, etc.

So first think about what basic item you’d like to make, then use that as a guide for the tools you’ll initially need. Keeping it simple and fun to start will allow you to focus on enjoying the leather craft itself. Once you gain a little experience you’ll know if you want to pursue that area of leather craft more, try a different one, or maybe feel that it isn’t as exciting as you originally thought (though I imagine once you make a cool piece, you might just love it forever 🙂 ). A few areas to explore include:

  • Basic work – Cutting, sewing, finishing, etc.
  • Pyrograpy – Drawing on leather with a hot needle
  • Laser Cutting & Etching – Cutting leather with a laser cutting machine (instead of by hand with a knife), and etching, where the laser cutting machine etches a pattern or design into the leather, without cutting directly through it
  • Molding & Shaping – Soaking leather in water and then shaping it around molds or forms
  • Stamping – using stamps to imprint designs onto leather
  • Perforation – Decorative technique making many purposefully placed holes in a piece or pieces of leather
  • Carving – Cutting away pieces of leather to leave a 3-dimensional design
  • Painting – Applying paint to leather pieces
  • Dyeing – Changing the color of leather via pigments

 

The leather community! It’s a really interesting group of folks. I’ll share below links to a few of the people I have been watching and learning from. There are many great resources out there and it’s so great how positive, supportive, and collaborative they seem to be. I think it’s really important that the maker community build each other up (Parker from Stock & Barrel speaks a lot about this), and the leather community seems to be have an excellent momentum going.

  • Stock & Barrel – Ogden, UT, USA: The YouTube channel has some great content, tips, and examples
  • Ian Atkinson – United Kingdom: His YouTube channel features some great projects, how-to’s, and excellent guidance
  • Eqqus Leather – United Kingdom: Another YouTube video with high end work in a really nice workshop
  • Nigel Armitage – Good tool reviews and some DIY tips
  • Corter Leather – Cape Cod – USA: Some excellent projects and guides

 

 

If you’d like to learn more about the hobby and career path of leather working, click here for my article about leather craftsmen.

The Tools You Need to Get Started in Leatherworking

Rugged, creative, and rewarding, leatherwork is an accessible way to make something that will last for decades. And in the last five years, dozens of leather goods brands have popped up, many of them from humble, home-startup beginnings.

So whether you’re looking to start your own brand or simply build some skills and make your own leather goods, we’ve compiled a list of the basic tools you’ll need to get started in the world of leather work.

Leather

Full-grain leathers via Leather Exotica

This should be obvious, but if you’re going to do any leatherworking, you’ll need leather. Small accessories like wallets are a good way to start your new hobby and, depending on the style, will usually work best with full grain leather.

Thread

Thread via polypropylene-twine.com

Thread options run the gamut, but you’ll likely want synthetic thread over a natural thread. Synthetic threads won’t biodegrade over time like sinew or cotton threads, ensuring your pet project a longer life.

Cutting Tool

An Al Stohman Round Knife via Amazon

Cutting leather is a fundamental part of producing leather goods and there are a few different options out there to get the job done, so your choice will boil down to personal preference. The most common tools used are a standard utility knife, a rotary cutter, or a round knife. Each option will provide a different cutting experience. Xacto knives and box cutters are even the choices of the most well-respected leatherworkers.

Cutting Mat

Image via Hobbycraft

A Cutting Mat is essential to make precise, clean cuts, and to protect your workbench . You can pick up a self-healing cutting mat from most stationary stores.

Diamond Chisel

Image via DHgate

Image via MAKESUPPLY

Unlike textiles, you can’t accurately stitch through leather without first creating stitch holes. In order to do so, however, you need a Diamond Chisel, which is used to punch those stitching holes through pieces of leather. Coming in different sizes and prong widths, Diamond Chisels are placed on top of the leather and struck with a mallet to drive the tool through a piece of hide.

Mallet

Image via Amazon

In basic leather work, a hammer is used to strike punches and rivet setters. A plastic hammer is recommended to ensure clean strikes that won’t scratch or damage your kit.

Stitching Awl

Image via eBay

The Stitching Awl is used to widen or create stitching holes, and carry the stitching thread through the holes.

Leather Stitching Needles

Image via 3 Rievers Archery

To stitch up your leather goods, suitable needles must be acquired. Needles used for leather work are typically dull, as the stitching holes are usually pre-punched with a diamond chisel. The eye of the needle must also be large enough for the heavy, waxed threads used to stitch leather goods.

Skiver

Image via Good Japan.

Sometimes, leather will need to be ‘skived’ to make it thinner for certain parts of the production process, like folding. Skivers vary in appearance from open-blade to an almost potato-peeler construction, but each variant on this tool will simply use a blade to pare down the surface of the leather.

Edge Beveller

Image via Goods Japan

 

Image via Amazon

An Edge Beveller is a small tool with a sharpened notch that is used for trimming and finishing the edges of leather to round them off.

Groover

Images via Goods Japan

This adjustable tool is used to create a straight channel where stitching holes can be punched. Additionally, creating such a channel means the stitches will not stick up from the leather, reducing overall friction and improving the durability of your leather goods.

Slab

Image via Fine Wood Flooring

A stone slab helps to ensure your hammer strikes are solid and also help to dampen sound. Suitable options for leather work would be marble, granite, or a similar polished stone.

Edge Burnisher

Image via Goods Japan

This tool is used to burnish the edges of your leather goods. Rubbing the burnisher on the edges of leather creates friction which melts the fibers of the edges together, resulting in a slick finish that will be more resistant to fraying.

Hole Punches

Hole punches in varying sizes via Ali Express

These metal pegs are used to punch holes in leather for hardware like rivets or belt holes. Again, punches are used in conjunction with a hammer or mallet to drive the tool through the leather.

Sketchbook

Moleskine sketchbook via London Graphic Centre

You can’t exactly go freeballing with leatherworking. A sketchbook is always handy to draft ideas, plan dimensions and just about every other strategy piece. Measure twice, cut once.

Cardstock

Cereal boxes via Miss Debbie DIY

When you’re making a pattern, you’ll want some kind of cardstock paper or some thick, non-corrugated cardboard on which to draft your patterns so you can cut them and use them for future projects. This doesn’t have to be the fanciest paper out there, especially if you’re totally new. Cereal boxes work well enough.

How To Start Leatherworking – Leatherwork for Beginners

If you’ve ever said, “I want to learn to work with leather“, or you’ve wondered how to get into leatherworking? This How To Start Leatherworking Guide is your first step in achieving that goal!

What tools are required? 

Where do you get all the materials?  

There are so many questions beginners ask when learning leatherwork.  Hopefully, this guide will answer some of these questions for you and get you started on the path to becoming a full-fledged leatherworker!

Tools Needed for Leatherworking

Just as in most hobbies and trades, some tools are required to get started in leatherworking.

Kits are available that include most, if not all the necessary tools needed.  Beginner leatherworking kits are a great idea for someone looking to pursue leatherworking as a new hobby. 

Here are some of the basic tools you’re going to need.  Make sure to look for some variations of these if you decide to purchase a beginner kit.

What Tools are Used in Leatherworking

Leather Punch Awl

Leather Awl

Probably the most used tool in the leatherworking arsenal is the leather awl.  The leather awl can be used to punch holes for stitching or for marking out your pattern.  

Awls come in many shapes and sizes.  Some come with replaceable tips while others, like the one pictured, are not replaceable.  

An awl has a long metal shaft that widens the farther down the shaft you go.  This makes it great for creating stitching holes wide enough for your thread.

Using the point of the awl, you can easily scratch your pattern outline directly onto the leather.  This leaves a fine line that is easy to follow with your cutting utensil of choice.

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Edger Tool

Leather Edge Beveler

And edger tool is an often overlooked tool for beginner leather workers.  

Having smooth, polished, and rounded edges on your leatherwork make it look more professional.  

Edger tools come in different sizes.  Pictured is a Number 2 Edge Beveler from Tandy Leather.  The higher the number, the more leather is removed from the edge giving it a rounder appearance.

I find that the #2 does the job for most of the projects I’m doing.  If I need to take a little more off, I’ll simply run my edger over twice.  This seems to get the job done just fine for me.  

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Swivel Knife

Leather Swivel knife

Ok, a swivel knife isn’t really required for beginner leatherworking, but it should be!

Carving designs into your leather projects is extremely satisfying.  When you decide it’s time for you to try your hands at leather stamping, your first tool needs to be a swivel knife.

A swivel knife with a sharp blade will glide through your leather surface leaving a perfectly cut line behind to use as your start at stamping.  

Adding accents to your stamped piece with a swivel knife can add eye-popping life to your pieces.

Do not try to cut your leather with a swivel knife! It is not designed to be used this way.  

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Leather Cutting Tool

a Standard Utility Knife can be used for leather

Pretty much just like the name says, this is a tool to cut your leather.  

With a variety of options, I’m willing to bet you already have something around the workshop that will work just fine. 

You may need a replacement blade since the last time you used it, but a typical utility knife will work just as well as any other cutting blade.

When you get more experience and you want to start upgrading your tools, getting yourself a leather round knife would be a wise start.  The round knife is a staple in the leather industry and as long as you maintain it, it should last a lifetime.

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Rubber Mallet

Rubber Head mallet for leatherworking

You’ll be surprised at just how much you end up using your rubber mallet.  A cheap rubber mallet like this one is typical in beginner leatherworking kits.

Punching holes with a leather hole punch stamp, you’ll need yourself a nice mallet.  When setting rivets or snaps by hand using dies and setters, the leatherworking mallet is indispensable.  

This one that I got in a kit has two removable heads that can be replaced.  This is great for when the rubber head gets chipped or breaks but the handle itself is unharmed. 

No need to buy the whole mallet again, just new heads! 

There are better mallets that will last longer than this type, but I really don’t find the need for them. 

A cheap rubber mallet along with my round headed stamping mallet, I have all the hammer power I need. 

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Leather Hole Punch

Multi-Size Leather hole punch

You could use your leather awl to punch your sewing holes, but what about the holes needed for rivets, snaps, or conch’s (decorative metal piece for leather pieces)?

A leather hole punch like this one can be found at most arts and crafts stores as well as online.  You usually won’t find this type of punch inside beginner kits.  They aren’t expensive, but they are worth every penny in my opinion.

Being able to punch perfect size holes for my belts or button snaps is invaluable.  And to punch them consistently is even better.

The punch out dies on this model are replaceable.  When you notice it isn’t punching holes as cleanly, it may be time to get some new dies.  

Whether you decide to spend the money and purchase this type of hole punch or not, you still need some type of hole punch to effectively work with leather.  

In the first beginner leatherworking kit, I purchased there were different sized hole punches that I needed to hold upright and hammer through the leather.  Needless to say, this was usually not an efficient way to punch my holes.  They usually came out uneven since I had a difficult time lining up the punch.  The multi-size punch makes it a lot easier and a lot quicker.  

Either way will work though, so use whichever option you have.

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Calipers

Not essential but calipers do come in handy.

Calipers are a great addition to your leather toolbox

Used for marking even lines along the edge of your leather, the calipers do an amazing job of keeping things straight.  Setting the calipers at the right space, you can create an even mark for your stitching line that can be followed by your grooving tool (coming up).

You’ll see in some of the tutorials how I use them to also mark the center of my belt blank.  Estimating the halfway mark with my calipers I can make a tiny mark from one side and a tiny mark from the other.  Between those two marks is my center point.  

Then I can punch my holes, or cut my buckle slot.

Once your piece is almost done, you can also use the calipers to mark an even, decorative, line all around your project.  This small detail adds so much to a finished project.  

Give it a try, you’ll be surprised!

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Burnishing Slicker (Wood)

Wooden leather edge burnishing tool

An edge burnishing tool like this is definitely needed if you want your leather projects to look professional.

You rub the edge burnisher on the leather edge quickly moving it back and forth creating friction which turns to heat, melting the leather fibers on the edge.  

This one is a wooden, edge burnishing tool and as you can see, it’s gotten it’s fair share of usage.

I have a few other edge burnishing tools that I also use to get a shiny edge finish. 

There are also ones that attach to a rotary tool to make quick work of edge finishing.

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Round Leather Stamping Mallet

Round leather stamping mallet

The round stamping mallet is really only needed once you start stamping your leather.  And even then it’s not a necessity.

It’s a very useful and comfortable mallet to use though when you’re stamping designs.  They stamping mallets tend to be a little heavier but that’s a good thing.  

You’ll want the extra weight when you’re tooling your leather.

The round head makes it easier to always hit your stamp in the right spot.  Trust me, you’ll be swinging that mallet hundreds and hundreds of times once you begin tooling, so you’ll appreciate the wider surface area of the round head.

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Stamps for Tooling Leather

leather tooling stamps

Leather tooling stamps will end up being a large chunk of your leather budget if you let them.

With the hundreds of shapes, sizes and designs tooling stamps come in, you’ll probably never have them all!  

You also have the ability to create your own relatively simply, so really the possibilities are endless when it comes to tooling stamps.

From backgrounding stamps to detailed designs, tooling stamps can really make your leatherwork your own!

You can pick up a basic beginner leather tooling kit at some local arts and crafts stores or online.  The kits typically come with about 6 or 7 different stamps as well as a swivel knife.  

The basic kits are really a good idea if you aren’t sure whether you’ll enjoy tooling. 

I’m pretty certain you will though!!

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Leather Sewing Thread

Assorted colors and styles of thread

If you want to connect two pieces of leather you only have a couple options really.  

Glue will work for some things, but it’s not a permanent connection.  For that, you’ll need some needles and thread!

You can’t really use your wife’s sewing kit to do this, but the same concept applies.  

The thread goes into the needle(s), the needle(s) go into leather.  

We’ll get into sewing techniques in a later section, but keep in mind there are many different colors and thicknesses available. 

Depending on the thickness of leather you’re sewing and the strength you want the stitch to have will determine what type thread you’ll use.  

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Leather Stitching Groover

Adjustable Leather grooving tool

As mentioned above, the leather stitching groover is made to evenly mark your leather around the edges.

It has an adjustable “arm” that can be moved side to side to create a smaller or larger distance from the groove “point”.  

This model shown has removable and replaceable tips.  It was an inexpensive model I got online but it works really well.  

I can use the tip shown here to make a mark around the edges of my project to add some decorative accents.

Another attachment uses a small blade to remove a tiny section of leather that allows your stitches to sit flush with the leather.

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Bone Folding Tool

Traditional bone folder creasing tool

This little tool is a lifesaver when trying to mold your leather.

Whether you’re making a custom fit holster or a knife sheath, using this traditional bone folder creasing tool, you’ll get sharper edges and more details in your molding.

You’ll use this for assisting you in the creasing of the leather at folds or bends.

These are very inexpensive and usually come in a variety of shapes and sizes.  

I picked up a pack of 3 for under $10.  

They make the details on my holsters really pop and stand out since they’re able to get down into smaller spots without damaging the leather.

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Leather Working Kit

So you’d rather just purchase a leather working kit instead of buying individual tools. Great idea! Doing your tool buying in a package like this is a great way to ensure you have all the necessary tools and is typically cheaper than buying piece by piece.

Once you start getting good at leatherworking you may want to upgrade certain tools, like maybe you want a custom made swivel knife or you want to try out leather tooling.

Here are some of the leatherwork tool kits I found on Amazon that are relatively inexpensive and full of all the tools that will help get you started on your first leatherworking project.

These are my top recommendations for Leather Working Kits on Amazon.

Leather Explained

When you first start out with leatherworking, it can be very intimidating.  Trying to determine what type of leather you’ll need and what the difference is between the different types.

As a beginner, you’ll typically want to work with vegetable tanned leather as opposed to the oil tanned leather.  Obviously, this depends on the project you’re working on, but the vegetable tanned leather will give you some more options.

Vegetable Tanned Leather

Vegetable Tanned Leather

The vegetable tanned leather is a leather that is tanned using extracts from vegetable matter.  Since the process uses natural materials to tan the leather, the color is typically a light tan or brown.  Shades will vary on all your vegetable tanned leather.

Veg tanned leather as it’s more commonly called is a great leather for tooling, stamping, molding, and all around custom leatherwork.

Veg tanned leather will absorb your dye wonderfully if you decide to color it. 

However, veg tanned leather turns a great patina color as it ages and weathers.  This a great for holsters or sheaths that will be used for years and years. 

The older it gets, the prettier it will appear.

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Oil Tanned Leather

Small Piece of Oil-tanned leather

Oil tanned leather is tanned using oils that typically tan the leather in darker colors.  

The possibilities of colors using oil tanned leather are countless and wide.  

One of the coolest benefits of using some oil tanned leather is what’s known as the “pull up” effect you get when bending or creasing the leather.  

When oil tanned leather is creased it leaves a lighter mark where the crease is.  This creates a really pretty contrast between the darker leather and the “pull up” parts.

This effect looks really cool on pouches, satchels, or bags. 

Possibly even a purse!

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Weight (Thickness)

When I first started learning leatherwork, I had no idea there were different thicknesses and that every thickness had a general purpose. With some time under my belt and some leather purchasing mistakes, I think I have a good grasp at this point.  

Tandy Leather has created a great chart that quickly shows what each thickness is most often used for.

As you can see, the thinner leathers are used as linings while the thicker leather is used for things such as belts and holsters.

New leatherworkers will want to make things like wallets or journal covers to start. 

At least that’s what I wanted to do. 😉 

So using this chart I would look for wallets and find that around the 4-5 oz range is what’s typically used for billfolds (wallets) and clutches. 

Now you’ll be able to order your leather at the correct weight.

Once you order some different thickness leather, you’ll see the difference first hand. 

Unless you can hand pick your pieces, ordering online can be tricky sometimes.  You’ll receive a wide range from some distributors so be mindful of this.  I’ve ordered 4-5 oz pieces that arrived looking like 7-8 oz and some 3-4 oz that looked like 1-2 oz.  

If you have a store like Tandy Leather located near you, I’d recommend you visit them to get your first pieces of leather.  This way you’ll get a hands-on feel for the different weights of leather and the staff can help you pick the right piece for your next project.

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Quality and Grades of Leather

The leather is classified into three main sections based on which part of the hide is used.  

Full Grain Leather

Full grain leather is the top of the line leather.  Acquired from the outermost section of the skin, full grain leather is the strongest and of the best quality leather that you can get. The natural grain in the full grain leather contains some of the strongest fibers throughout the entire hide.

One of the best qualities of full-grain leather is the aging process it endures.  Rather than the leather wearing out and breaking down over time, full grain leather develops a beautiful natural patina. 

This assumes you’ll be taking care of your leather piece throughout the years.  😉

Because of its high quality and low availability, full grain leather will be your most expensive type of leather. 

For this reason, it’s recommended that you wait until you have some practice under your belt before you start spending your life savings on full grain leather.

Top Grain Leather

Top grain leather is what you’ll typically want to use.  The top grain leather is much more readily available and therefore less expensive.

Taking the pieces of full grain leather with imperfections, the manufacturer sands and removes the outermost section of the upper grains.  

Because they remove some of the natural grain, this makes top grain leather slightly less durable and strong.  

Top grain leather is a great choice for new leatherworkers because of its vast availability and lower prices.  Messing up a piece of top grain leather is less of a heartbreak than screwing up a beautiful piece of expensive full grain leather.

Genuine Leather

Genuine leather is the most readily available leather on the market but it’s also the least durable and lowest quality.

Featuring a smooth, grain mark free, surface, genuine leather is typically pressed with a texture to appear grainy.  

You’ll find genuine leather is used for lower quality purses or bags and some clothing.  The low quality makes the lifespan of genuine leather far lower than full grain leather. 

For this reason, you really won’t want to use genuine leather for any high-quality projects you’re making.

Parts of the Hide

A “whole hide” is the entire animals hide.  It is then broken down into sections.

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Leatherworking Techniques

Now that you know all about the tools required and you have your leather ready to go, let’s talk about the different techniques you’ll need to learn.

Dyeing Leather

Dyeing the leather is one of my most favorite parts of leatherworking.  I love watching the light tanned leather change to a dark amber, or a deep rich black.  

To properly dye your leather, you’ll need a few things.

  • Rubber gloves
  • Oil or Acrylic Dye
  • Dauber, Wool Skin, or Cloth
  • Waste Newspaper or Cardboard
  • Towel for Cleanup
  1. Put on your gloves! Dye will stain your hands just as easily as it stains the leather.  
  2. Lay down the newspaper or piece of cardboard to protect the surface you’re working on then lay your leather piece down on top.
  3. Although not necessary, I lightly wet the leather and let it dry before moving on.  I find this helps evenly distribute the dye.  
  4. Using the wool dauber or cloth, evenly apply the dye.  For your first coat, apply in a circular motion all over the leather.


  5. Once you’ve covered the entire piece, go over it again but in a side to side motion this time.


  6. I often even make a third pass going in an up and down direction.  This ensures I’ve covered the entire piece of leather evenly and completely.


That’s it!  You’ve officially dyed your first piece of leather.  

Pretty easy right?  I told you it wasn’t a complicated task!

Generally, you’ll want to let your leather dry completely overnight before working with it again.

Stitching

If you’re planning on doing any projects that require two pieces of leather, you’re going to be stitching.  

Stitching leatherwork is not something to be afraid of. There’s nothing to be intimidated about.  

Burnishing Leather Edges

Burnishing the edges of leather adds so much professionalism to your projects if done properly.  A smooth, shiny, edge on that holster you made adds detail that people will definitely notice and appreciate.

Gluing Leather

For some reason, I always feel like a preschooler when I break out the contact cement and start gluing up my leather.  Probably because my tongue sticks out while I concentrate on getting the glue in the right place.

Is Leatherworking a Good Hobby?

I guess it really depends on who you ask. If you’ve read through this guide and it sounds like something you’d be interested in, give it a try.

Leatherworking can be a very enjoyable and relaxing hobby. Sure, you’ll get frustrated at yourself for making mistakes, but always remember, it’s a hobby, and you’re having fun.

Nothing beats a nice spring day with the windows open when you get the smell of mother nature mixing with that fresh leather hide you just picked up. Ahhhh…

While leatherworking can get expensive, oftentimes once you get pretty good, a friend may ask you to make them something. I’ve made wallets, holsters, and belts for friends that easily offset my costs for materials, tools, and time. Plus I’m doing something I enjoy so it doesn’t really feel like work in the end.

So for me, yes, leatherworking is a good hobby if you like making things.

Is Leather Crafting Expensive

Leather crafting can be very expensive, or not, depending on the quality of leather you’re using, tools used, and what your time is worth to you.

If this is strictly a hobby, then time isn’t really a factor. Your tools are typically a one-time investment unless you upgrade. The largest factor in determining leather crafting cost then is leather quality. Cheaper leather equals cheaper leather crafting. Simple as that.

Check local ads for estate sales and leather kits for deals. I picked up 3 very large boxes of some oil-tanned leather a friend’s father had when he passed. Cost me nothing. If friends and family know you’re a leatherworker, they’ll know what to do with leather items they don’t want.

This is a great way to keep leather crafting costs low. And the best part is, you never know what you’re going to get!

What Can You Make With Leatherworking

Honestly, the possibilities are endless. The top choices though for beginner leatherworkers is wallets and belts.

Belts are probably the easiest to make unless you’re tooling a design. It’s simply a matter of cutting the leather to the correct width and length. Then attaching the clasp, punching the holes, and cleaning it up. Ok, maybe not THAT simple, but you get my drift.

Wallets are great for beginner leatherworkers because they add stitching to the process. You’ll learn and see, very quickly how straight your stitching lines are as well as how well you glued two pieces together. You can find templates for sale online. You can get them either printable or hard plastic that they mail to you.

Holsters are another typical leatherworker craft. I’ve made leather holsters for a few different handguns and they’re still holding up very well, years later.

Making holsters is a bit more difficult because not only are you stitching, but you usually form the leather around the gun. This is enough for its own guide, so I won’t get into it here. But needless to say, you’ll need to learn how to form leather before attempting your first holster.

I want to try working with leather. Where to begin????

Please, tell me where to start. Hands itch as I look at this beauty. I would try to do something small.

Can be simply cut out:

large
and here

I read Temko about leather processing, it became already bad.from so much material I want to sew a 15cm wide leather belt with two buckles. And I don’t know where to start. Help with advice, if there is such infa, poke

We are glad to welcome everyone who came to the sub-forum “Accessories from leather and fur” with a desire to start working with these materials.
Many people have reasonable questions “Where to start?”, “What tools to buy?”, “Which direction to choose?” etc.
This theme is especially for you.
To get started, check out the main areas of work with skin, which our participants are passionate about. There is a separate topic for each of them.
1. Various small things made of leather (bracelets, belts, leather jewelry, wallets, etc.)
Part 1.
Part 2.
2. Leather paintings
Part 1
Part 1
3. Leather bags
4.Leather in the interior (pots, plates, frames, rugs, etc.)
5. Leather + other handicrafts = interesting products (about the combination of various materials and techniques)
6. Leather knitting is a squeak of fashion!
7. How to sew leather goods
8. Fur bag

Anyone who first decided to work with leather and fur, it is advisable to start with the topic Books on working with leather and various resources. Reading literature often removes many problems and questions.

For beginners, the topics on tools and materials that can be useful in working with leather and fur, as well as on preparatory processing of the material will be very useful:
1.Tools for working with leather
2. My workplace
3. Where can I find leather and fur?
4. Leather dressing
5. Painting, ironing, restoring leather and suede

The sub-forum has a theme created specifically for master classes – Artistic leather processing: master classes

If you have questions about color harmony, then it may be useful the theme “Itten’s color wheel”.

If you did not immediately find a topic suitable for yourself, then look through the subforum again (it’s not so big).Perhaps, some confusion prevented.

We hope that you will find a lot of interesting and useful things for yourself. And don’t forget to show the results of your work (even if you don’t like it at all). You will be given valuable advice.

And more. Come to the leather and fur flooder. In it we talk about everything in the world. And believe me, you won’t be bored.

One of the first stages of working with leather is chefing. Its different methods can be found at the following links.

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Leather basics

I’ll have to try, no idea. Thank you.

Fascinates !!! But where can one learn the craft of making such beauty ?????

90,000

Irina 74

Fascinating !!! But where can one learn the craft of making such beauty ?????

tyt!

magda-lenka

Reg.
01/11/2010
Mess.
1

Hello, smart girls! I am a beginner and really want to learn how to work with leather. Decorated the bottle – my first job, I’ll try to “stick” my “masterpiece” if I figure out how to insert a photo on the forum …

natscha

Reg.
12/07/2008
Mess.
1670

Awards: 79005

I don’t know how to do it right, but I immediately cover it with leather.

Oksana Dubrovskaya

Reg.
01/28/2011
Mess.
28

The link to the topic “Washing and drying leather” does not work.
And “Leather + other handicrafts = interesting products” too.

leo_89

Reg.
01/17/2011
Mess.
171

Go to “Leather and Fur” and find these themes in the list of themes

Basia_ya

Reg.
23.02.2007
Mess.
108

Good afternoon, girls. I’m in Moscow.

I would like to take a lesson on working with leather for beginners.

But I can’t find who gives full-time microns in Moscow. I’m trying to find a Temko on an aspen, so far without results.

I am interested in tools and production of single-layer flowers and leaves

DIY leather goods for beginners: master class with photo

Once upon a time, the skill of creating leather goods was one of the most popular.In our time, nothing has changed much and leather things are valued the same as before. True, the look of some of them has changed a bit, succumbing to fashion trends. This article will tell you how to make leather goods with your own hands.

Having learned how to do such things on your own, you can create exclusive models that you can either wear yourself or donate or even put up for sale as a unique hand-made. Consider several master classes with photos, as well as share tips from real masters of leather art.

Craftsmen’s Tips

When deciding to create a leather thing, it is useful to know the main important points of work. The initial tip is to look at simpler crafts to choose your first item. So you can understand the basic nuances of the work. You can also use old things to start with, which are probably lying around in your home – raincoats, jackets, bags and anything that can be redone.

Main operational aspects:

  1. You can use absolutely any leather for work, as mentioned above.
  2. To remove old stains from leather, use plain water and a kitchen scouring sponge.
  3. To soften the material, it is treated with glycerin.
  4. It is not necessary to connect individual parts only by sewing them with threads, there are also other methods – buttons, clips and other decorative elements.
  5. Long seams can be sewn with a sewing machine.
  6. Special needles are available for materials such as leather, they do not create large holes and will not allow the skin to tear.
  7. For work, special tools are very useful, which are best prepared in advance. This is a hole punch, hammer, tongs, and others that may be needed depending on the product itself.
  8. Cut leather on a firm, flat surface.
  9. To decorate the finished product, absolutely any accessories of your choice are suitable. You can select and invent them yourself, or you can find a ready-made sketch of the product and stick to it.
  10. To give the garment evenness, you will have to work a little with firing and fire.

Stylish bag

Let’s start with a master class on creating a stylish bag. This bag can be an addition to both an evening dress and a regular everyday one.

What we need to create such a bag:

  1. A piece of leather of the size of the desired bag;
  2. Scissors, needles, stationery knife;
  3. Clips;
  4. Nylon threads;
  5. Sewing machine.

Let’s get to work. A rectangle is cut out of the prepared piece of fabric. In our model, the dimensions of the sides are 40 and 28 cm.

Next, we proceed with the design of the front of the bag. Smooth stripes should be cut, size 1.5 by 12 cm, on each side.

Take a round table plate and draw a symmetrical semicircle, as shown in the photo.

Cut along the contour and get the following type of segment:

The bottom of the material is folded up and fixed with clamps.

Side seams are easiest to sew on a sewing machine, after which the clamps are removed.

We turn the product onto the front side.

Cut a long strip of 70 * 1 cm from leather.

This strip is secured with a knot and passed through the small hole made. The other end is tied by wrapping the bag, and the product is completely ready.

Any leather product looks good with the addition of jewelry and fur, so feel free to experiment.

Creative Accessory

Since not only things are relevant, but also accessories, in this lesson we will make our own bracelet that will suit any look. For this we need the following materials:

  1. Leather pieces;
  2. Rivets & Clasp;
  3. Nail and lighter;
  4. Items for decoration.

Let’s start by cutting out the strip that will be the base of the bracelet.Adjust its width at your discretion.

You can watch the video on creating such bracelets:

Singe the edges of the cut out bracelet. And you can immediately fix the rivets on it. According to the proposed pattern, we cut out leather pieces that will become flowers in the future. The volume of the flower is regulated by the number of cut petals.

Cloves are used to fix the blanks of the petals.The result is such a stylish bracelet.

Both the first and the second master classes are quite suitable for novice craftsmen, so you can safely get down to work. In addition to a bracelet and a handbag, you can try to make such everyday things as a belt for every day, hair clips, housekeepers for the whole family, compositions of leather flowers, and so on. The variety of styles and looks that can be created using leather is simply innumerable.

Related videos

The videos will let you learn about the various uses of the skin.

How to sew from genuine leather?

How to sew from genuine leather – we will try to answer this question in detail in this master class. There are a few simple rules when working with genuine leather.

We will tell and show in detailed photos how to sew a basic seam on a sewing machine, process allowances and fasten threads, as well as how to sew a simple seam by hand.

How to sew from genuine leather: the necessary tools and equipment

How to sew from genuine leather with your own hands? In addition to the material itself, you will need a number of mandatory tools.

For cutting and working with seam allowances, you should purchase a knife, hammer and glue. The basic version for beginners can be bought at a construction supermarket, and a more professional tool is presented in stores of sewing accessories or accessories for sewing shoes.

Knife should be sharp and comfortable.

Hammer should be chosen small, with a wooden or rubber head, it is designed for tapping allowances.

There is a professional glue for those who work with leather goods, it is often sold in large packs and it makes no sense to buy it for one or two projects. Choose a clear, waterproof polyurethane adhesive. Make sure leather is on the list of materials for which it is intended.

Double-sided tape can be used to pre-fix some parts. There is a special tape for leather in the hardware department, but it is quite expensive. You can use regular office double-sided tape, but only where the machine line will be later laid.

It is also desirable to have a rubber mat on which it is convenient to cut the leather. Also useful are scissors and small pliers .

How to sew from genuine leather on a sewing machine? Ideally, you should have a machine for working with heavy fabrics and industrial leather. However, it is possible to sew simple models from natural leather of medium density on a regular machine.

For this you need special plastic foot and machine needles for leather , which have a special spatula-shaped tip. You also need to purchase leather thread , which is durable and slippery.The combination of these three components will allow you to sew natural leather on a household sewing machine.

Let’s say a few words about buying material. Genuine leather is sold in various sizes of skins, which are measured in dm2. The price is indicated for 1 dm2 and then the total cost of a particular skin is calculated. Very often there are various defects on natural leather: scratches, holes, defects in color and texture. In order to buy the right amount of material, take all the necessary patterns to the store and lay them on the skin, avoiding problem areas.

So let’s find out how to sew from genuine leather!

Basic cutting

Look closely at the entire piece of leather in good daylight from different angles. With a small number of defects, mark them on the seamy side, if there are many problem areas – mark and lay out the pattern on the front side.

Cut key pieces as close to the center of the pelt as possible. The edges of genuine leather are thinner and may stretch slightly.They can be used for small decorative details: valves, belt loops, cuffs, etc.

If you sew from natural suede, note that suede has a pronounced direction of the pile and details cut in different directions will differ from each other.

If thin leather is wrinkled, you can try to iron it with an iron from the wrong side through a slightly damp cloth. Be sure to try it on the little unnecessary piece first!

Simple seam and seam allowances

Remember that unlike fabrics, all needle or pin marks on genuine leather remain forever!

Fold the right sides in and align the edges.For additional fixation, you can use stationery clamps or clothespins. Set the stitch length to 3.5-4 mm. Sew to the desired length. Leave the ends of the threads at least 3 cm long on both sides.

Pull the threads to one side and tie a double knot at the beginning and end of the seam.

Apply adhesive to both allowances, including knots.

Unfold the allowances and press them to the base. Tap each allowance and seam with a hammer.

Add finishing stitch (optional).

Pull the threads to the wrong side and tie a double knot. Put glue on the knot and cut off the thread tails.

How to thread the ends of the threads

When working with genuine leather, it is often necessary to fasten the threads in a place where both the front and back sides are in the public domain.

Pull the threads to one side.

Tie a double knot.

Thread both threads through a regular fine needle and stick it into the hole in the stitch next to the knot. Bring the needle out after 2-3 stitches.

Use pliers and a thimble to pull out the needle.

Pull firmly on the ends of the threads so that the knot enters the inside of the stitching, into the hole of the stitch.

Cut off excess threads with scissors.

Hand Stitch

Sometimes the bobbin thread runs out during sewing, but the machine still has time to sew a few stitches.It happens that the machine cannot cope with the thickness of the leather part and only a series of punctures with a needle can be made. In all such cases, you will need to manually sew the seam over the finished punctures.

Insert the bobbin thread into the needle. Insert the needle into the nearest free hole.

Bring the needle to the right side and stick it back in the same hole, making a loop around the upper thread.

Remove the needle and pull both threads at the same time, tightening the stitch evenly.Continue to the end of the seam.

The seam is ready!

Crafts from leather (145 ideas + tools).

Good afternoon, today I fell in love with a new craft material. Fell in love purely theoretically. Itself has never made leather. But I was holding in my hands these amazingly beautiful, awesomely smelling products made of genuine leather. And I saw beauty – the wild and free beauty of real living material. Genuine leather is a clot of energy that has collected the life force of an animal, the creative power of a master and the soul of an image that has come to life in new skin.Having dug up the abyss of the Internet, I found great ideas for leather crafts that can enrich the thought of creators who work with leather. After all, it so often happens that the eye gets blurry, the hand gets used to the same forms, and ideas revolve around images similar to brothers. Therefore, I decided to write an article (and more than one) on the most interesting and RELEVANT ideas to date that you – masters – can bring to life from leather. And sell. Monetize your work, your work. And the main thing in this “sale” is not so much money – as the knowledge that the thing has found its partner.A person who coincided in spirit and idea with your leather brainchild.

So let’s go through the collection of ideas … And suddenly we will find here something that will light the eye and embrace the creator’s hand with an impatient trembling.

Leather key rings.

Hand-made articles from genuine leather.

Beautiful hog keychain made of genuine leather. The ears are pushed into the slot and sewn together.

You yourself choose the design of the animal’s face.

Dog charms can be made for any breed of dog. Such a handmade leather product will be an excellent gift for the owner of a pet dog.

You can decorate our leather craft with iron buttons, rivets, locks, rings.

Key fob elements can contain rivets and buttons – and this can even be functional, not just decorative.

Below in the photo we see an example of the functionality of leather crafts.Keychain coin box. Or a keychain key holder.

Leather coin keychain looks like this. In the round seam we leave a small hole (bottom or top) and a strap with one or two buttons, which is an important part of the muzzle, will be thrown through this hole. It turns out that the very design of the animal’s face determines where to make a slot for the coin box.

Also, for this design, you can make a leather keychain – where the keys will go out from the inside on leather straps.Simple actions – unfasten the button, shake it – the key will fall out by itself and hang on its strap.

By the same principle of shaking out the keys, this housekeeper works – a cute leather craft in the shape of a dog. Where the keys are fastened to the strap (in the photo it goes above the dog’s head). To hide the keys back in the housekeeper, we pull the strap up, bend it down by the dog’s stitch and fix it on the button.

Small leather crafts.

Cigarette cases, bookmarks, souvenirs.

Nowadays, when horrible pictures of corpses and decaying tissues are painted on cigarette packs … it is simply necessary to have a proper CIGARETTE CASE.

It is not so difficult to make such a leather cigarette case with separate cassettes for each cigarette with your own hands. Wooden blanks – pads will help here.
That is … Between the stitches of the two layers of leather, round wooden sticks (the size of cigarettes) are placed. The skin is sewn close to the stick. A new stick is inserted and a new stitch is made.So with chopsticks and leave. You can wet it and let it dry, then the shape will be preserved. And then a case for inserting this leather cassette with chopsticks is ALSO BETTER ON THE SHOE TO MAKE. We grind a block of the required volume of bulge from a tree (as under a cassette) and stretch the leather under this block, let it dry. We fasten it with a seam.
The principle of working with wood blocks is shown below in the same article (using an example with a convex handbag through a belt). Read on and everything will become clear

Natural leather bookmarks for books look very dignified and stylish.Nice to read when the smell of printing paper combines with the smell of real leather.

Also excellent and inexpensive to operate … and at a customer’s price would be headphone corner pieces. A small piece of leather on an iron button, shaped like an animal’s face.

You can also sew a small leather product in the form of a strap with headphone holders to complement this life hack.

Dog ammunition.

Crafts from leather for dogs.

Any dog ​​lover will love such a thing. When a dog’s harness looks like a high-quality horse harness, you no longer feel like a dog breeder, but a horse breeder. Such things are appreciated by people who are proud of their dogs. It is worth mastering leather goods like this and promoting your skills on animal forums. There you will definitely find your clients. And such a product will sell better than key rings and other leather products.

Especially great if you bring in some creativity in the design of these dog uniforms.

Leather crafts

gloves and other products.

Now interesting things made of leather are worn along with interesting things of the wardrobe. Every person in the mainstream of this or that popular movement tries to stand out from the crowd. Remember the Goths, skinheads, emo – now there are many new (followers of Tolkien’s work, the matrix trilogy and others) “get-togethers” stylized under the most significant ideas of the era.

You can start making a product for this target audience.And publish your offer for the sale of genuine leather artifacts in social groups of these areas.

These can be gloves or wristbands with iconic silhouettes … or mysterious hieroglyphs and rune symbols stamped on the skin.

The pattern for such leather crafts is a simple handprint.

BRACELETS in leather.

Crafts from genuine leather

Master sophisticated new techniques leatherworking (which will be discussed below) and create perfect masterpieces that are difficult to pass by.

Believe me, this is much better than sculpting such unpretentious bracelets-nothing-about-anything.

Although, of course, in taste and color … there can be a lot of bracelets. Try simple leather crafts and complex ones. There are buyers for both laconic, ascetic things and very complicated products. The question is who is your customer .. and the main question is: what do you like to do yourself?

You will find many interesting master classes on making bracelets on the Internet or on our website (and then a link will work here).

And also it is worth paying attention to the catwalk paths of the fashionable season of the current year. It is there that models with adornments on their arms walk, which will rise to the top of sales in the very near future. So make quality replicas of leather crafts from famous fashion houses. Take ideas and implement them in your production.

Scalpel carving is a jeweler’s work that creates beautiful lacy leather crafts. Do-it-yourself openwork bracelets look like factory perforation.

And also master such a method of processing leather as EMBOSSING. Special stamps for leather are now on sale (we will show them a little below). But you can use strong buttons with a convex pattern, grandmother’s brooches and other curly things as a relief material for embossing. This will help make your leather crafts more interesting and competitive in the market.

Leather goods can be dyed, toned in any color.

And it is also beautiful to BURN the patterns on the skin with an ordinary burning device (as in Soviet childhood).

In order not to burn your fingers on the heated device, you can (as in the photo above) sew him a thermo-coat from a thick piece of genuine leather. Useful craft for the master. You need to do your work more conveniently and more comfortably – then, on the wave of comfortable creation, rare successful finds and ideas for future work will come.

Women’s leather jewelry.

Leather crafts (necklaces, earrings, hairpins).

With the same scalpel you can cut out beautiful openwork necklaces from leather UNDER THE STAPLE from paper. These elegant neck and décolleté jewelry will appeal to any woman. DIY leather jewelry is another free niche in our market. Such leather things will not leave indifferent fashionable girls. Nowadays, leather skirts are in trend – they are worn with turtlenecks, with shirt-cut blouses. And in this image, leather crafts-jewelry just asks.

Mono-earrings (only one earring in the ear) – this is relevant right now. Let’s make such beautiful things out of hard, thick leather. So that the products are “oak” to the touch, keep their shape like wood.

And even if you have small pieces of leather left, you can also make a fashionable necklace out of them, which is assembled from small parts onto a leather cord or chain.

You can also make MULTI-LAYER leather ornaments.Layered petal flowers (roses, daisies, daffodils and others).

Heating devices of various thicknesses and diameters will help you to shape with the leather element . So it is possible to press through on thin skin the relief of PETALS or LEAVES we need.

By the way, the same devices will help you work not only with the skin. You can make lush flower brooches or flower hairpins from any textile fabric.

Or you can find ready-made, already cast dies for leather goods.

The same flowers can be decorated with hairpins. Decorate with them ready-made plastic clips, combs, or make leather half-grips with a stick through and through (as in the picture below).

Here is an example of such hairpins with a wooden (or plastic) skewer. The veins on the maple leaf (pictured below) were made by with a leather or wood burner.

Come up with your daring forms. Interesting ideas can be found everywhere. Especially in films that have just been released or have gained popularity over time.

Feather earrings have already become classics and every year they adorn more than one fashion collection. Master this simple technique and DIY leather earrings. Crafts like this always sell well in clothing boutiques and flashy jewelry stores.

Patterns on natural leather.

Stamps and impressions.

I especially like the BRAID STAMPS. As you can see, placing these stamps either VERTICAL or HORIZONTAL, we end up with a pattern imitating the interlacing of straps.

By placing the stamp along the edge of the previous print, we get the connection of the pattern into a single woven fabric.

Stamps can be bought in stores, you can order them from craftsmen who work with metal.You can use some forged items, embossed products made of solid material.

With the help of thin prints of various forms of bending, it is possible to make artistic embossed pictures on natural leather.

By combining metal die elements with a heating device, we get a fast-acting machine for working with leather.

Leather crafts

3-D BAGS.

Volumetric leather treatment.

I also want to show you an interesting way to work with leather.
This is a technology of stretching wet leather onto the last and then drying it.

This technique can be used to create interesting effects on leather goods. On jackets, bags, bracelets, you can squeeze out any silhouette of convex solid objects you have at home. Provided that hot wet skin will stick tightly to the object.

Ceramic figurines can be used – any hard, even surfaces.The main thing is not to overdo it with a stretch, so that the skin does not crack. And special emollients can be added to hot water. By experimenting with additives, you can come up with the best solutions to work with this technique.

Sewn leather crafts.

And of course you can SEW a variety of crafts from leather – bags, sneakers, boots, jackets, pants, skirts. It depends on what you like.

If you are a beginner craftsman and do not yet have a sewing machine, and you work by hand, then you can use a special accessory-hole punch for an even seam with the same stitch size.

You can sew small stitches to get started. For example, these are.

It is possible to make a leather dummy pistol out of leather (in 3D technique). And then sew a leather holster for this dummy.

You can sew small and large bags. Their patterns are already ready-made on the Internet. The main thing is to buy equipment for fast work.

It is profitable to master small women’s clutch bags. Having decorated them with an original detail, you will always find yourself a buyer.Because an original fashionable thing will definitely be bought. And if you sew the same thing that is already on the market, you are unlikely to attract interest and word of mouth.

Be creative. Create unusual original things. And don’t forget to make these things not only UNUSUAL, but also PRACTICAL. So that the item does not just remain a fancy decoration of the counter – but it finds its buyer and lives a life with it.

Today we saw such interesting ideas for leather crafts.All this is done by human hands. Made of ordinary natural leather. You now also understand how many-sided material is in your hands. Make leather goods and find owners for them.

Successful creativity to you.

Olga Klishevskaya, specially for the Family Kuchka website.

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DIY leather jewelry: master classes

DIY leather and fur jewelry

One of the very first materials that humans learned to process were natural fur and leather.Initially, they were used only for practical purposes, but the desire to decorate their image in every possible way, as well as a creative approach to needlework, won. From antiquity to the present day, bold, original and distinctive accessories delight stylish fashionistas. We suggest not to spend money on the purchase of such products, but to learn how to make leather jewelry with your own hands.

Contents of the article:

Workshops

Leather and fur are excellent materials for luxurious handmade jewelry.Stylish accessories can be decorated with ornamental stones, beads, supplemented with elements of embroidery, knitting, beads, bugles, embody any needlework skills in the author’s collections of fashionable crafts.

Luxurious decoration

Earrings made of leather and fur

Butterfly brooch with beads

Bracelet with fur

With the light hand of a craftswoman and thanks to its excellent taste, leather jewelry will harmoniously complement not only the everyday look, but also become an original accent of an evening dress.Do you want to surprise everyone with the talents and skill embodied in the author’s collection of jewelry? Beginners will be able to get acquainted with art, learn how to make leather jewelry with their own hands at a master class.

Leather flowers

Crafts-flowers made of natural or artificial leather are a basic blank for any accessory. They can be used to make charming brooches, make a headband, decorate a bag, and even update old sandals. Many craftswomen prefer to work with natural material, from which the flower will turn out to be more delicate and realistic.To work, you will need several flaps of thin natural leather, scissors, glue and a mold. To make leather jewelry, you need a mold. You can take ready-made sketches of product parts or draw them yourself.

Stylish accessory

Colorful flower

Leather peony

Algorithm for making a flower:

  • We circle the patterns on the seamy side of the material, carefully cut out along the contour with scissors.
  • Shaping the details to give the flower a beautiful volume.To do this, prepare a solution of two parts of water and one part of PVA glue, and then generously coat each element.
  • Strongly squeeze the petals and let the blanks dry so that the glue becomes transparent and invisible.
  • Cut out the pistil and stamens from a thicker skin flap. Many craftswomen use fishing line or thin wire wrapped in tissue paper.
  • Twist the petals with dried glue with a pencil, giving them the desired shape.

Tip!

There are some simple secrets on how to shape leather blanks.Use the principle of high temperatures, use a heated pan, hair dryer, preheated oven.

  • Putting all the individual pieces together into a beautiful flower, securing each piece with superglue.

Step-by-step master class on creating a flower from leather

Ready flower

To make such a flower more elegant, original and festive, you can use additional decor. Sparkling stones or rhinestones, sequins, pearl beads, sequins, lace and fluffy natural fur – all this endows the jewelry with notes of luxury and grace.

Leather poppy. Part 1

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Leather poppy. Part 2

[ot-video] [/ ot-video]

Filigree leather curls

It takes a little skill to make filigree leather jewelry. Intricately curled spirals made from thin leather cord are the basic element of many trendy jewelry. Curls are obtained in any shape, color and size, with an interesting texture.It all depends on the material used for the cord.

Filigree curls

Jewelry with filigree curls

We offer to make an original leather jewelry with a twist with your own hands. For work, you need genuine leather, glue and a flat smooth surface. Novice craftswomen are wondering how to make jewelry on a budget, but without losing quality and aesthetics. There is a secret: it is not necessary to buy leather in canvases, it is expensive, and besides, it is a pity to cut it into pieces.In the closet there are always a few things made of genuine leather, and in creative shops you can buy scraps of genuine leather.

Let’s start the creative process:

  • From long scraps we form cords-flagella. Apply dotted glue along the even edge of the material, bend the width of about 5 millimeters, press with a soft cloth to remove excess glue. After the glue dries, cut it off along the edge, we get a thin lace.

Important!

The more various cords of different shades and textures, the brighter and more original the decoration will turn out.

  • Let’s start making curl blanks. We twist each lace with a “snail”, drop a little glue in the middle. Between the turns, insert the end of the flagellum of a different color and texture, twisting again into a spiral. Adding new ribbons, fasten them with glue and press firmly to mask the place of the build-up.
  • We continue to build up the cords until we get the curl of the desired diameter and shape. To give the product an unusual look, you can twist the “snails” in different directions.The workpiece must be left for a day until the glue dries completely.

Filigree lesson

The product can be made in any color

From such curls you can make beautiful pendants, earrings, brooches, decorate headbands and even clothes. Having pasted randomly curls on a flat lace with a clasp, we get a very stylish bracelet.

How to make jewelry from leather strips

[ot-video] [/ ot-video]

Create beauty from fur and leather

Truly royal jewelry is created from leather and fur.We offer you to make a magnificent necklace for special occasions with your own hands.

Vine necklace

Necklace made of leather with fur

Beautiful decoration on the neck

Chic necklace

For work you will need fabric, fishing line, beads, as well as white leather and fur. On cardboard we draw a pattern in the form of a small heart. We transfer the sketch to the fabric, cut out 16 blanks. Then the pattern is transferred one by one to the skin, and then to the fur. There should be eight leather pieces and eight fur pieces.We process the edges of leather blanks with fire, giving a little volume. We lay out all the details, alternating them, glue the fabric base to each back. We string parts onto two cuts of fishing line of the same length. We decorate the necklace with beads, stones or other beautiful decor. In such a simple technique, you can make fur jewelry with your own hands, for example, bracelets, earrings, necklaces, complementing the elements with lace or satin ribbons, unusual accessories and other details.

Making a beautiful decoration

Such decoration will make any lady irresistible

The main advantage of this type of needlework is its versatility, lack of special skills and techniques.When creating stylish jewelry made of genuine leather, do not hold back your imagination, experiment by combining various needlework techniques, complementing the products with the most unexpected decor. This is how exclusive collections of author’s products are born, which are in incredible demand among fashionistas.

training in working with leather, lessons and master classes in the best school I want to sew

Genuine leather is a versatile material with unique properties.Strong and elastic, delicate and durable, it is pleasant to touch and attracts attention. Moreover, each piece is unique in itself – working with such material is extremely exciting.

At the courses on working with leather in St. Petersburg, you will learn the basics of leatherwork, moving in stages from simple to complex. In the course program:

  • Materials Science
  • Cutting and working with ready-made patterns
  • Manual Seam Technique Training
  • Construction of large and small haberdashery
  • Building and testing layouts
  • Studying the peculiarities of sewing
  • Sewing and trimming

In addition, you will learn how to care for leather, its dyeing and decoration, we will answer all your questions during the work.At the master class in leatherworking, you will be able to sew at least 4 leather products to choose from (and, if desired, more):

  • Belt
  • Business card holder / cardholder
  • Women’s clutch
  • Long wallet
  • Harness
  • Backpack twist
  • Travel bag

Our school of sewing from genuine leather conducts various master classes in leatherwork for those who want to try their hand at this material at work.The program includes master classes on making a belt, shopping bag and waist bag, as well as a three-hour free lesson for beginners and those who continue to make a wallet with their own hands. You will receive a lot of useful applied information and try it out in practice, get acquainted with the varieties of tools and types of leather, master the technique of hand seams, learn how to work with leather and patterns, process cut edges and install accessories, and, of course, you will enjoy the finished product.

All leather lessons are taught in small groups by an experienced tanner and are suitable for both beginners and advanced.Classrooms are located in St. Petersburg (2 minutes walk from the metro station “Tenologicheskiy Institut”).

DIY leather goods: a master class for beginners

You can make many very different things from leather. Experienced craftsmen do complex work, for novice needlewomen it is better to opt for simpler objects for work. In today’s master class, we will make various leather goods quickly and step by step with our own hands.

How to learn how to make beautiful leather goods with your own hands

To make such an original necklace you will need the following tools and materials:

  • Revolving punch;
  • Leather;
  • Scissors;
  • Adhesive.

Let’s get to work.

The skin must be cut into several triangles of different shapes. Pay attention to the photo.

Think about what shape your necklace will be and glue all the pieces with glue into the desired shape. Before proceeding with further work, you need to wait until the glue is completely dry. Use a hole punch to punch holes around the edges of the necklace blank. You need to insert a chain into the holes. It is recommended to put the product under the press for some time in order to prevent the leather areas from curling.Using pliers, push back one ring in the chain and connect the ends. We get such a wonderful necklace that can decorate more than one image.

Leather hair bow:

The following tools and materials are required for work:

  • Leather;
  • Hair band;
  • Scissors;
  • Ruler;
  • Fine wire.

Let’s get to work.

Take a ruler and measure a strip of leather about 40 cm long and 4 cm wide.Let’s cut it off. Use scissors to make the corners of the leather strip sharp.

Take an elastic hair band and attach a leather strip on top. We fasten these parts between using a thin wire. The hair tie should be placed in the middle of the leather strip.

It remains to put the accessory on the ponytail of hair and tighten the double knot from the ends of the leather strip.

The hair accessory can also be made of leather and fur, then it is perfect for wearing in the cold season.

Leather bracelet.

From scraps of leather you can make an original bracelet.

The following tools and materials will be needed for work:

  • Leather;
  • Closure or Velcro;
  • Decorative items.

First you need to measure your wrist and cut a rectangle out of the skin for this size. You also need to cut out circles from leather, which will decorate the bracelet.

It is necessary to make holes along the edges of the bracelet and insert rivets into them.

The edges of the circles must be melted over the candle. In the center of each circle, make holes with a nail and a hammer. We collect flowers. The largest circle, then the medium-sized circle and the smallest. We connect them with a decorative rivet. You need to form 3 such circles.

It remains to fix the leather flowers on the bracelet itself and the accessory is ready.

Sewing a practical bag for storing jewelry

A very original and functional bag for jewelry can be made from leftover leather.

The following tools and materials will be needed for work:

  • Leather;
  • Hole Punch;
  • Eyelets;
  • Thin tape;
  • Scissors;
  • Small bowl;
  • Beads;
  • Handle.

Stroke work:

  1. We will use the bowl to create an even circle. Place it on a piece of leather and circle it.
  2. Cut out a circle in a counter.
  3. Along the perimeter of the circle, it is necessary to make holes with a hole punch at a distance of about 2.5 cm.
  4. Install eyelets in all holes.
  5. Now thread a thin tape through each hole.
  6. Tighten it and add a bead or amulet to it, tie it with a knot or bow.
  7. If the tape is too long, cut off the excess pieces.

Leather clutch.

For work you will need the following tools and materials:

  • Leather;
  • Sewing machine;
  • Leather needle;
  • Clips or clothespins;
  • Stationery knife.

Work progress:

  1. A rectangle of 40 by 28 cm must be cut out of the leather.
  2. On the sides of the rectangle, it is necessary to make indentations of the following dimensions: 1.5 by 12 cm.We obtain a detail of the pattern of the front of the bag.
  3. With the help of a plate, shape the edges of the workpiece with roundness, by tracing it with a handle. Then cut off the excess. The main thing is to monitor symmetry.
  4. Bend the lower part of the workpiece to the point where the sides are cut. We fasten the side parts with clothespins.
  5. Using a sewing machine, fix the side parts of the bag.
  6. Turn the product inside out.
  7. Bend the top of the bag, measure about 2.5 cm and make a small incision.
  8. Cut a strip 70 cm long and 1 cm wide from another material. Tie a knot at one end.
  9. Push the strip into the hole in the purse and pull it over the knot.
  10. We will tie a leather strip as you like and you can use the bag for its intended purpose.

In the video selection, we offer several interesting lessons from experienced craftswomen, in which you will see in detail the creation of interesting things from leather.

Video selection on the topic of the article