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About DJole

  • Rank
  • Birthday 02/13/1965

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Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location
    Tacoma, WA
  • Interests
    Fiddles, books, big trees, leather, swords, and keeping the house intact.

LW Info

  • Leatherwork Specialty
    Dark Age and Medieval European inspired designs, pouches and boxes
  • Interested in learning about
    shoe-making, tooling, hand stitching

Recent Profile Visitors

6,340 profile views
  1. Need to know where to buy leather where I live

    Well, first you need to figure out what kind of thing you'll be doing, so you can know if you need tooling leather, or harness leather, or leather for shoes or bags. I did a quick Google search and found some businesses out in your part of the state that might help you out. Give people like this a call, and find out where they get their leather, or if you can get leather from them: Judd Miller Custom Saddlery 19350 Balis Rd, Red Bluff, CA 96080 (530) 529-6615 I see the previous poster has already recommended the Hide House for you. It's further than Sacramento, but here's the full contact info: The Hide House Quality Leather & Hides For All Industries Po Box 509, Napa, CA 94559 (888) 849-2816 I don't know either of these businesses, nor have I used them for supplies (and I don't get money by advertising for them, either!)
  2. Tooled Car Seats

    Are they going to go 4-wheeling, getting stuck in bogs and mudholes and streams with that gorgeous tooling on their seats?! Brave souls!
  3. Birth of a sporran

    Sporrans are born, not made?! Seriously, though, the attention to detail there is very good. I greatly enjoyed looking at all the pieces in progress, and then the final product.
  4. What do YOU like about figure carving?

    I like the dimensionality, the tactile surfaces. It's really low-relief sculpture. A 2d drawing is nice, but it's flat. Good tooling just begs to be touched.
  5. I'm sure our sewing machine experts will be along to take a look, but in the meantime, you could help them out by giving some information: 1) What machine are you using? 2) what kind of leather, and what thickness? 3) What kind of thread, and what thickness?
  6. Do you consider yourself an artist?

    Ah, a question that I spent years in graduate school discussing! ;-) Let me throw my 10 cents into the ring.. The word "craft" really has the same root as the word "art" (from "artifice," or something created.) Over time the notion of "craft" has been relegated to 2nd or 3rd place to the notion of "art," which has come to mean fine art. People have basically three overlapping cultures: folk culture, popular culture, and elite culture. Here is how they are different: Folk culture is traditional over time and space, passed down usually in an oral context in small, face to face group situations. Learning how to play the guitar from listening to Uncle George's playing in the kitchen is likely folk culture. Popular culture is mediated, meaning that it's passed down via mass media. Listening to a recording of George Harrison, and watching him play on TV, as you try to replicate what you hear and see, is pop culture. Elite culture is taught in formal instruction, and considered the "best." Studying guitar in school under a teacher's instruction, learning guitar tab, and playing in "art" concerts is elite culture. A traditional song, like a Blues piece, or a fiddle tune, can originate in a live setting or folk culture. But then it gets recorded by Bob Dylan, and played on the radio to millions of people outside of the original live culture, and now it's popular culture. You can then learn the song from listening to the record, and then somebody else may learn it from you and it could be folk or elite, depending on the situation. Art is slippery! The only actual difference is the amount of money people will pay for a "fine art" object, which is basically an object that is useless for anything other than some expression of an idea. Paintings and sculpture are considered fine art. There is also "art music." Then there is popular art, usually mass produced (like movies, or art prints or posters). So... what about leatherwork? When does it become art or artistic? Well, artistic means that there is another layer of meaning in the aesthetic qualities. Think of a saddle -- that can be a finely made saddle, but was the creator adding on non-functional aspects to express delight, or culture, or some other idea? A craftsman can say that's a well made saddle -- good stitching, good design, and so on. But it's not really "artistic" yet. If the saddle maker decides to add some decoration, by tooling (non-functional, really) or use dyes to change the color, then it becomes artistic -- there is something beyond the thing, another layer of meaning. Why add tooling or color except to delight the eye, or the touch? What if somebody made a fine-art saddle? Well, it would lose its saddle-ness. It would be a piece of art, resembling in shape but not likely to actually work well as a saddle. But it would certainly command a hefty price! And who would take a million dollar saddle out to work on the ranch? TL, DR: Yes, leather workers can be artists-- it's just that what they are doing is rarely fine art (there is some out there, but not much). For many of us, the pleasure is not just the concept or the aesthetic choices, but function is important. And above all, the tastes and demands of the audience -- are they making pieces for people who want fine art? Then it's fine art. Are they making pieces for people who want a holster that works well but also looks good? Then it's still art.
  7. Buckle suppliers

    Try Ohio Travel Bag-- they have a selection of buckles and a lot more hardware: I have got some things from them in the past.
  8. Great design, excellent execution. That's a real attention-grabber, there! It's too nice for a bedside valet -- it belongs in the front room.
  9. Welting

    I did a quick search, and discovered that Goyser welting goes by other names: "Norvegese, Norweigan, Goyser, Bentavenegna--These are all similar construction methods with small differences, but the problem is that different makers call things differently, so it’s very hard to define exactly what is correct." --<> Have you searched for these other terms to find the how-to you want?
  10. I like seeing the Filipino-style designs. And that's some pretty good tooling there, even for a ham-handed amateur as you call yourself!
  11. Hello from Northampton, UK

    With a background in dressmaking and millinery, you already have a handle on patterns and 3 dimensional thinking. Welcome to the forum, and remember that most of us started like you did, so don't be afraid to show off your projects or ask for help when needed!
  12. Tooling leather

    A typical veg-tan tooling belly is a strip about 5 feet by 6 inches (give or take, of course). Not all of it will be usable (holes, too stretchy, etc.) but if it's just to practice tooling on, or for small projects, then it will be fine. I recently found some thick veg-tan tooling bellies at Tandy for 10 dollars apiece, on sale. Four bellies came home with me, and I still have more than half the leather left to play with. Just in case you aren't familiar with the terms that describe hides (belly, shoulder, etc.), the diagram below will help: Tandy often has bags of scrap for sale (mixed veg tan and chrome tan), and Brettun's village up in Maine also sells scrap leather by the pound (but not tooling leather, I think --see this link for that part of their website).
  13. Eyelets and grommets

    If you are making this arm guard out of thick enough leather, perhaps you don't need metal eyelets or grommets at all, but just holes will work. If you are worried about cords pulling through the holes in the leather, maybe what I did here will work for you: This is a leather coat I wear over my fencing doublet. You can see from the folds that it is not a heavy leather. The leather was from a remnant of an upholstery hide, so it's like a thick cloth. But notice the oval pieces at the front seam. Those are reinforcement pieces for the leather ties, made from a thicker tooling leather. I have one oval piece on each of the overlap, with two holes in each, and the thongs come through that leather, so the ties pull on the thick leather rather than the thinner hide. If you were to do something similar for your bracers, the leather is only one one side (the outer side), so there would be nothing sticking out on flesh side to irritate the person's arm, like what might happen with a grommet. A grommet may get hot in the sun, or corroded over time by sweat, rain, etc. and need to be replaced. These leather "grommets" can also be replaced-- cut the stitches out and sew a new one on. I must admit that setting a series of grommets or eyelets will be much faster than all the stitching involved here!
  14. “Raised” Effect/Beveling

    First, what bevelling tool (or tools) are you using? If you can give us a make and number (like, say, B60 Craftool Beveler Stamp) that would help us figure out if it's the right tool for the job or something else.
  15. Through serendipitous web links, I found Bellroy's site. Bellroy is a leather company based down in Australia, and they have a great variety of leather goods for sale. Among them is a slim wallet. The web page <> contains an animated photo of the wallet pattern, cut out in pieces, and how it is assembled. I found myself watching the repeating video over and over for about 10 minutes, noting different details.