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Everything posted by kncorey

  1. Thanks everybody for the comments, the kits have been well received now that the holidays are over. These are great projects to practice zippers, I've found that the key to getting a nice zipper is using a strong two-sided tape to hold it in place, and ensuring that when you stitch back through the zipper tape, you make sure your needle enters the stitching hole cleanly. That means perpendicular - it's easy to come in at a bit of an angle, and in doing so you might snag a couple of the threads from the zipper tape (since your stitch holes through the tape will not be as clean as through leather). If you do catch some of the thread, it will pull just enough to make the top stitch a little wonky. As far as the piping goes, it's not as hard as it might seem, just make sure the leather for the piping is thin, but not so thin that you need a filler to give it a round fold (the part that shows). This design allows the piping to be butt-joined, since the seam is hidden under the end tabs. If the piping seam is going to be exposed, then it needs to be overlapped, which is much trickier. Also realize that your glue line will be much smaller than you might think, since it will be turned inside out and have stress placed on the seam. Glue just thin enough so that it holds together for the hole punching. Happy New Year folks!
  2. Wanted to share some of the shave kits (dopp bags, wash kits, whatever you'd like to call them) that I've been working on for Christmas gifts. After seeing many different designs, I settled for using a plan from one of Al Stohlman's books. I didn't like the dimensions of that one however, so I modified the width until I finally came up with the right proportions, at least in my mind. I find some of the other shave kit designs out there look a lot like a loaf of bread! They may be easier to make, but I had a picture in my mind of a kit that my dad used to have, and this one comes closest to that. The construction method was challenging to figure out, in the book it showed using the awl to do the final stitching. I tried that a couple of times, but did not think it was the best way, and it was messy stitching, even though it was on the inside of the bag seams. I now pre-punch the stitching holes after figuring how to make them line up. There's also a trick (it's not a trick Michael) to sewing the sides that I also figured out after making a few of these. I left out the typical grab handle and opted for the d-ring. I find that when I carry one of these bags it's kind of tucked under my arm. I usually have too many loose breakable items in the bag to sling it around on its end with a handle. I did include the d-ring in case you wanted to hang the bag on the back of a bathroom door.
  3. Thanks, and thanks for asking, but I'm going to make this style for sale, so no sharing
  4. Thanks, lol, I started leather crafting (from zero prior experience) a little over 6 months ago, and I've had the good fortune of having the opportunity to put many hours since then into learning the skill set. Keep practicing!
  5. Thanks! According to my sewing girlfriend, easing a zipper is when you snip little slits in the zipper tape where you want it to curve. This eases the zipper into the curve and stops the bunching. Works for both inside and outside curves. The welt or the piping was very easy! I used a 1mm thick piece of upholstery leather (cut very accurately!) folded over and glued together. Then I just sandwiched it in the seam, fold-side in (will face out when you turn the bag). I glued it down to one side of the bag, then punched the stitching holes in each side of the bag seam separately. I used half the width of the welt as the seam line. A little care that your holes line up and then stitch away.
  6. Finished this backpack yesterday, it was a nice challenge with the welt and the eased zipper. Fully hand stitched with #277 bonded nylon thread at 5spi. Used a great hide called Sunset Rage from the Tasman Group (Acadia Leather) - soft, supple and durable with a nice top grain pattern, it has a great feel. Overall pleased with the result, and great skill builder and learning piece.
  7. Thank you, many hours, it's true, but I see a raw edge, I have to stitch it, if just for decoration! Thanks! Thank you. Thank you, the gusset is more interesting when done this way, I agree.
  8. Finished this up on the weekend. Tasman Crazy Horse hide, hand stitched with #207 bonded poly thread , 5 spi. I will definitely do another with some slight tweaks.
  9. Thank you, I used something called Cognac Hennessy for the rust coloured bag (Acadia Leather). It is about 5oz., chrome-tanned, and for that rolled seam I ran my stitching groover along the middle of the fold a few times to get it to lie down nicely. For the mottled bag I used a random hide I picked up from Tandy, it's about 3/4 oz (I think a veg re-tan) and that one didn't need anything when I rolled the edge. The handles for both bags are laminated, the rust coloured having a black chrome-tanned top and a dyed veg bottom. The mottled bag has a dyed veg top and thinner chrome-tanned bottom (upholstery leather). I'm sure your daughters would appreciate them, they were well received! Thanks!
  10. Thank you, all hand stitched. I used 1.0mm Ritza for both bags, and some 0.5mm Maine Thread for the pocket of the mottled bag to break up the chunkiness of the 1.0mm thread. Stitching the straps alone takes as long as crafting the rest of the bag, but the stitching is well worth the extra time and effort, IMO. Really elevates the look of the bag, and makes the straps much more substantial.
  11. Two tote bags and a belt I finished a couple of weeks ago as gifts for my mom, sister and nephew. Delivered them to New Brunswick last week. The body of the tote is the same, but these were practice pieces, allowing me to vary the pocket styles and straps/fasteners. I think I might do one more of this style for my daughter who is going back to University in a couple of weeks, then change it up a bit.
  12. Thansk very much - if I understand what you're asking, the whole thing is just a sandwich. The coin pouch floats and is secured to the inner backing with a rectangle stitch. You can see the stitches in the inside of the pocket in the last photo. Makes it tough to punch the holes though, lots of things get in the way in the assembly process. I tried out a set of lacing pliers for the outside, and that's why the spi is so big (and straight, not angled stitches like the inside where I used a diamond chisel). The pliers did make sure the holes were lined up on both sides though.
  13. Thanks for your feedback! The edges for the back pocket openings, I used a fine edge bevel tool and then hand burnished. For the round bits I used a dremel burnisher. I've been using Tylose instead of gum trag and it burnishes up quite quickly.
  14. I've recently started using the glue pot I found at Busy Bee Tools. I ditched the wooden brush and use the smaller ones pictured below that I found at Canadian Tire. They are cheap enough to be disposable, but the glue pot does such a great job at keeping air out that the brush so far after two weeks is still great. Very happy with this set up. http://www.busybeetools.com/products/glue-container.html http://www.canadiantire.ca/en/pdp/pintar-utility-brushes-6-pk-0490670p.html#srp
  15. Latest iteration of my long wallet design, I think this one turned out ok, but I feel I'll change up the thread size/spi next time around. I forgot to include a d-ring attachment for a leash, even though I cut it out and everything I like the colour contrast but feel this colour combo & fabric lining pushes the wallet to being more feminine - I wouldn't carry it myself. But, all good in the end IMHO.
  16. I appreciate the comments Tugadude, and I agree with the cutout needing some fabric lining, which I've done in the past (like the photo). I also get what you are saying about the safety/security thing with the wallet leash & grommets. I have been practicing my 4 strand round braid and would like to incorporate that into the leash at some point soon. Thanks for the stitching comment too, the thread is 1mm tiger, the stitch distance is 1/8" minus the burnishing. I'm in a love/hate with 1mm tiger at the moment, at 5 spi it looks good, anything tighter than that and it gets too chunky IMHO. On smaller pieces like card holders and minimal wallets, I feel the 5 spi/1mm combo looks less elegant, on this larger one it worked. The tiger thread is such a pleasure to work with. I think I'll abandon the floating pouch at this point, tack it down and see what happens. That's part of the fun, no? Trial & error, and learning through it all. Cheers!
  17. Just finished up this long wallet prototype on the weekend - this was my first attempt at a zipper and it worked out ok. I've made many wallets and field tested them all, I'm finding that with wallets, something might look good, but it ends up being not practical or functional enough for me IRL. I don't want to be standing at the cash register and shoving folded bills into my minimalist wallet, or fighting with three cards stacked on top of each other. This zippered pocket pleases my, aesthetically, but I can't imagine what I would carry in it. And the fact that it floats does not appeal to my girlfriend, but it makes sense from a design standpoint since it may get bulky. I'm working on version 2.0 and will incorporate a fold-over snap closure of some sort. And probably go for the obligatory grommet/chain attachment "biker" look, just to give it a go. I'd appreciate comments about or experiences with form over function, that to me is the real challenge with this craft. Once you get the skills to be able to craft these things, then it comes down to making it better. (stronger, faster ). Feedback is most welcomed. Have a great day folks!
  18. Hello, I've always wanted to work with leather, and this year for Christmas my gf got me some leather remnants. I did my first project in February, making a rough tool roll for a chip carving set I also got for Christmas. Ever since February I haven't looked back, made my first tote bag last weekend. It's a very challenging craft, so much to learn. Looking for tips and advice from the experienced ones.
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