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Found 49 results

  1. I'm designing a large (around 40 by 30 by 7 cm) gusset bag from 2 mm vegetable tanned leather. I'm using a three-piece gusset design for added rigidity. I know from experience that large bags like these will eventually start to become rounded at the top as the bag starts to form around your body.I would like to prevent this as much as possible, keeping the box-like form as long as possible. The best solution I have thought of thus far is making the lid a separate piece and hiding a slat of 2 mm PP sheet inside the joint between the back piece and the lid. I wish I had some wooden blinds, I could steal one of the slats and use that. I also considered adding a small formed pocket on the inside, but this would make the narrow bag less practical. Any thoughs or recommendations?
  2. Pilot Travel Bag

    So, I have done a few projects such as belts, wallets, dopp kits, and a duffle bag. I have settled on mine next major project and could use some guidance moving on to a more complex project (as I see it). I want to build a pilot bag like the one seen on Buffalo Jackson. https://buffalojackson.com/large-leather-briefcase-everett-pilot-bag-camel.html I believe that I can get the basic shape, the pockets, the handles, and the strap right. What I am not sure about how to complete is the inner pockets for the laptop and tablet, the pocket that is accessible from the outside (making a hidden pocket), adding loops for pens, and the lining without showing all of the edging. I also still debating the welting. I made a dopp kit that the interior looks terrible because I didn't do a very good job on the inner seams and I don't want to repeat this mistake. Any advice is appreciated as I would like to work out a solid plan before I start building this bag. It must be able to fit in the overhead of an airplane as I will be flying frequently. I am also uncertain as to what thickness of leather would be best...2/3, 4/5? I am still debating hand sewing this or using that most aggravating sewing machine I got from Tippman....leaning more towards hand sewing to reduce blood pressure and cussing. I am not so good at pattern making but will try to put together something decent to post to the group as I work through this project. Looking for a little group think on this project to make it as good as I can and any help is greatly appreciated.
  3. Large Satchel

    Ok, here she is.....The oversized satchel I've been working on for last couple of weeks.
  4. Hi, I started learning to work with leather recently. I've learned some on my own but I know there are the right ways and in some cases easier ways to do things. I've made some leather bags, cuffs, keychains, pattern weights I live in Norwalk CT and I'm looking for classes or a leatherworker willing to show me skills in New York City or Fairfield County, CT. Below is what I've learned and what I know I know nothing about. Please let me know if you know of someone or ask them to respond to my posting. Thanks for your help, Dennis Leatherworking skills Know a little: Patternmaking Measuring leather Cutting accurately Snapping, riveting, grommeting - poorly Hand sewing Gluing Grooving (?) Marking holes Punching holes with awl 2 needle sewing Threading needles and securing ends Process Machine sewing thin leather using walking foot attachment on home sewing machine Cutting straps Punching holes Stamping letters Edges Beveling Sanding Burnishing Buffing Know nothing about: Reinforcing/ Gluing to backer board Wet forming Dyeing Choosing leather Treating flesh side Lining Carving or detailing
  5. Hi all , my latest bag project , comes with a shoulder strap and lined with natural colour pig hide.
  6. This is a purse made from the same Wickett and Craig harness leather that I made a briefcase from. The customer saw the briefcase and loved the look. Once again critiques are welcome. This is the first time I've made a purse.
  7. Hello from Scotland UK

    Hello All, I'm a newbie to leather, l started introducing leather on my waxed canvas bags and l'm hooked. It's a great (but expensive) medium to work with so l have started to make some small accessory products and one bag but hoping to one day have learnt enough about processes and leather to start making a small collection of bags. Fingers crossed.
  8. Hi everyone! I've been lurking awhile, thought it was time! I'm Lori Jo (Joey) McFarland and have been playing with leather on and off for years. I absolutely love the this forum, and really enjoy seeing what everyone is making. The information here is terrific, thank you! Here are a couple pics of my work. Ok just one cause I can't seem to make them smaller ;-) This journal uses composition notebooks. The design is from a Byzantine mosaic from St George's (I think) cathedral.
  9. Hello from Ukraine

    Hello, everyone! My name is Anton, and I'm from the Kiev, Ukraine. I just wanted to say thanks to this forum and all of you for the great information. I've been reading forum for couple of years (without registration). Here is some of my works. I love bags, briefcases, satchels, good leather wallets and so on... And personal site: http://antonragozin.com/ (russian language)
  10. Newbie Getting Started

    Hi Everyone, Warning: Complete Newb. For the past 6 years or so I've had a desire to learn leatherwork. I love well-made leather products and since I've got fair hand eye coordination I finally want to give a go. I've been trying my best to read as much as possible about the various thread types, leather types, sewing machines, etc. I had contacted a guy on Etsy a few days ago who does great work and he imparted some advice which was "First, know what kind of projects you want to take on" and "Start with hand sewing to see if you like it." Seems logical. So having given this some thought, I'd like to start perhaps with a bag, like a possibles bag, and maybe belts, and then more elaborate bags with linings, pockets, sections, etc. I want to use premium materials in my items. I'm from Chicago originally (home of Horween) but I live in the UK these days (London). I could really use some good advice because I'm finding myself overloaded with info researching this on my own. 1. What is the best leather (and/or canvas) to use for a mens bag, like a possibles bag and/or satchel? I've received some samples from a Scottish mill of some wax canvas up to 24oz which seems to be a reasonable material. 2. Can someone explain, or post a link to a good source, on thread thicknesses, how they're categorized and their applications? i.e. what is a good thread "gauge" and type to use in a bag application. I've read Polyester is the best weatherproof thread out there. 3. What kind of lining would be good for a bag, if any? Would a tartan wool work well? Are linings typically glued in (if so, what type of glue)? or stitched in? 4. If I'm doing this by hand, what is the best needle to use? Are there specific leather or canvas type needles out there? and do they match up with the thread thickness somehow? 5. Let's say I go a sewing machine route. What are some good sewing machine types / brands that I should consider? I've done a bit of research on this and whilst some people suggest a vintage Singer 201K, others seem to use much more industrial and robust machines like a Techsew. I've seen some amazing videos by Arthur Porter. And Wizcraft's posts stand out on this forum. Amazing. 6. Any really good classes, books, or online bag making tutorials out there that are recommended? I know this is a load of questions and anyone answering doesn't need to address them all. I suppose I'm looking for a general "approach" to this whole thing and to understand if there are any "rules" involved. Thanks so much, and apologies for the long post. Any and all advice you can throw my way is appreciated. Kind Regards, Geo
  11. Hello, I'm interested in doing small wallets and possibly briefcases later. I've been looking at the Cowboy 4500 and the Highlead version of the cylinder arm and would appreciate your input. The leather I'm sewing is pretty thick, I would be sewing 1/4 inch thick leather regularly (4.5-5 oz). I've noticed that the Highlead is much more expensive than the Cowboy, but I've heard the parts are easier to order. One person told me the Cowboy can take Juki parts though. However I like the price of the Cowboy- essentially I can get the 16 inch arm for the same price a Highlead 9 inch would take if I purchased locally. Also the Needle Positioner feature comes with the Highlead and I can imagine it being useful for a novice like myself, but the Cowboy salesman didn't know what a needle positioner was. Any thoughts on that? Both come with a servo motor. I've read some other forums but would appreciate your input. Perhaps my biggest concern is service and support since I'm new to industrial sewing and leathercrafting. There will be issues and I know I'll have questions. Thank you so much for your support. Sidona
  12. Briefcase/satchel Bag

    Hello All - For any bag/briefcase makers out there I'm in the market for something I can use in the business world. I'd like to buy and/or have something made that can be proudly taken to business meetings but also has a somewhat casual appearance. If anyone is interested can you please message me or respond to this post? Thanks!
  13. Hi Everyone! I am looking for tips on how to most efficiently construct a long (~45"), skinny (5/8") two layer strap out of upholstery leather. So far I have been folding over a large piece of leather and gluing the flesh sides together, then cutting a straight edge, then cutting to width, then sewing around the whole thing. The thing is, it has been hard to get a nice clean cut edge, and very hard to cut a consistent width down the length of the strap. Anyone have a different method I could try? Also, I've been using water based leather adhesive - should I be using contact cement instead? Thank you! Juliette
  14. Hello everyone! I hope this is OK to use as a thread of the many things I'll create I'll use this first post as an index of what I've made! I hope you enjoy and I always appreciate feedback and tips! My kraken book
  15. Hi ya'll - figured I'd finally get brave and post some of my stuff. I mainly do custom purses, belts, and wallets. The client gave me an old pair of custom cowboy boots with his father's ranch brand on them. He wanted two purses made out of these for his wife and daughter - and left me with full creative control. I had already cut down and heavily reworked, cleaned, and conditioned one of the shafts to make the most use of the boot. After deciding how much of the boot was going to be useful, I had to come up with a pattern/idea that would display the most of the boot - I decided on a simple messenger bag-type purse. I used 5-7 veg tanned for the bulk of the purses/straps, dyed with gel antique Briar Brown to match the brown in the brand in the shaft. I edged the cut boot shafts with 3-4 oz veg tanned and dyed them and the center tie-down strap in dark brown to match the stitching in the boot (it's difficult to see, but there is dark brown thread around the collar and piping of the original boot.) (The back of the purses here)It was a struggle cutting the shaft of the boot from the heel counter and instep, and evening it out was a gamble - so as not to lose any more of the original boot than necessary. Again, I covered the edge of the boot shaft with 3-4 oz veg tanned leather and dyed it to match the stitching of the boot. I used the original pull straps from the boots to secure the straps, and also what was left of the pull straps as clasp-hangs. Thanks for looking!
  16. I was recently asked by a friend to make him something with alligator skin. I've never worked with this material before, but I was pleasantly surprised by how beautiful it can look blended in with other projects. Not sure if you would agree, but I thought I'd share some photos of the bag in case anyone else is interested in getting creative with exotic skins like alligator. Also the skin I used in this piece is from a fresh water alligator's tail piece. I got some of my design ideas from a Japanese artists piece and some of my own experimentation.
  17. Good day, I am an established leathersmith from Greensboro, NC. Always looking to learn new techniques and such. I work with any leather and any iem but concentrate on custom work. Check out my website at http://dragonleather.net. I can be contacted from the contact section of the menu. Good to be here. A few samples of my work are attached. Obviously you can see more at my web site. Dave
  18. Finally Decided To Join!

    Hello all, I'm a beginning shoe and eventually boot maker in Utah. I'm just finishing up on my first pair of shoes. I will post my progress shortly when I can collect all the pictures and get them into one spot. My leather interests include shoe and boot making, bags, and whatever else I may come across. I hope to do some more learning and interacting. Before, I just went to this forum and perused but didn't become a member. Thanks!
  19. Hi, I'm Hannah and I'm very very new to working with leather! I found this site while doing some internet research about sewing leather bags, and so far I've found a huge amount of info just browsing the old threads. I've made a lot of cloth handbags, but only recently started to sew with leather. I always wanted to work with leather but assumed my sewing machine wouldn't be able to handle it, and I knew I didn't have the budget for a specialty machine. But recently I've been fooling around with a few lighter weight leathers (chrome tanned, 2-3 oz) and as long as I'm careful I can coax my sewing machine to deal with several layers. This has opened a whole new world of possibilities, and I'm excited to start making some leather bags! I recently bought some hand-stitching tools as well, and I'm very interested in learning to hand-sew leather. Here's my question (probably the first of many): when making handbags out of cloth, usually interfacing is ironed on to the fabric to give it body and structure. I've heard that heat plus leather is a Bad Thing, and one shouldn't iron interfacing to it. If that is true, how do bags made of lightweight leather get their structure? Is some kind of material sewn into the bag to reinforce it? If so, what? Is it possible to wrap soft leather around a stiffer frame?
  20. Hi all, I've just joined the forum and am hoping I'll learn a lot from others! I started working with leather about six months ago. I've made a few things which I've posted below. One question I have is about the quality of leather. As I'm a beginner, I don't want to work with the most expensive leather but I still want quality. The leather I'm using to make the handbags is Italian leather and they told me it was from the belly. I don't know if that's a good or bad thing. Can anyone give me some advice? Here are some things I've made over the past couple of months:
  21. Anyone Know Where I Can Buy One Of These?

    I really want to make a leather bag for myself and I saw one of this clasp on the links below and loved it. Anyone know where I can source one of these? Links: http://theleathershop.com/bag/heirloom-messenger-tan.html/ http://www.ebay.com/itm/Saddle-Bag-Hardtail-Harley-Tan-Brass-Motorcycle-Tool-Rich-Phillips-Leather-/140854638792 Thanks, Andy
  22. High Quality Hardware

    Hi Everyone Is there anywhere in the UK where I can buy high quality hardware for purses and bags? Such as closure hardware. Instead of having to buy from American or Italian suppliers! I've looked at the usual suppliers such as Tandy Leather UK and other suppliers. But I'm not finding anything unique on these sites or quality. Many Thanks VRSDesigns
  23. Hi guys and gals, Here's some recent stuff I've completed. First is another messenger black out of black Horween Essex. I used a different method to attach the straps. They are now removable as well. I also doubled up both straps and stitched them. Holy Good God it took forever. But it looks nice so.... Second is a minimalist wallet out of cognac Horween Essex. I made this for my good friend (his wife commissioned it for their 3rd anniversary). The divider in the middle provides two inner pockets for more cards (I stole the idea from Teranishi as his stuff is awesome). Third is a square 3 pocket bi-fold out of toasted walnut Horween latigo. I stitched all around the wallet for the first time. I think it gives a nice finished look. Fourth is a rounded 5 pocket bi-fold also out of toasted walnut. I really like this wallet design and think its an overall solid wallet. I did however switch up the stitching and used .030 maine thread in natural (which is more white than I expected) and stitched it at 6.5 sti. Finally I decided to try a tooled trucker style wallet out of some Hermann Oak I recently bought off the forum. I lined the middle with some fabric. This is the first time I've lined a wallet. This is also the first time I have done any significant amount of tooling. The tooling sucks. I need to have way more patience. I tooled it while it was still too wet and then didn't wait long enough for it to dry before gluing the liner on. It was a good learning experience and I plan to experiment some more. Thanks a lot for looking and I look forward to hearing what you think is good and what you think I could improve on! Joe
  24. Machine 4 Leather Bags?

    Just found this site tonight and am blown away by all the knowledge! You guys rock! Looking for a sewing machine to make bags and purses. I am new to leather work. Am very good with regular fabric sewing. I learned the right machine for the job is a must. I've read another pinned post here about motors, needles, and walking feet. I have a range of leathers from very thin to upholstery. I'd like to use them all. Not sure what needle or thread sizes I would need. Can a single machine sew 3/8 to 1 inch thickness? I am doing this from home just for me and possibly friends. My thinking is 1500-2500 should buy a good machine. I really don't know. Thanks. Looking forward to your replies. Amy