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About Alaisiagae

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    MA, USA
  • Interests
    nature, science, animals, video games, cross stitch, leatherworking

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  • Leatherwork Specialty
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  1. I haven't tried those, I'm worried they won't fit my head or be comfortable. If I had the space, I might look into a table magnifier, usually it has a built-in lamp. It clamps to the side of the table and the magnifier is on an articulated swinging arm. My dad has one that he's had for ages, it comes in handy for all sorts of things.
  2. Usually after dyeing, you'd buff a little and then put on a sealant (aka finish), such as Fiebing's Resolene or something similar. Doing so will lock in the dye (chemical reaction) to stop further rub-off. If you don't want a glossy finish, there are non-gloss options (Tandy's Eco-Flo Satin Shene is one of them). I guess you could try a buffing wheel if you wanted some mechanical assistance. They work for cars, not sure how well they'd work for leather.
  3. It's a lovely piece! Your stamping is flawless.
  4. I like a small pair of Singer scissors. https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B001IKCGLM/ref=ppx_yo_dt_b_search_asin_title?ie=UTF8&psc=1 The thread snips from Tandy are crap.
  5. I don't know for sure. The dye rub off happened when I was trying to burnish the edges with beeswax (in hindsight, I should not always follow internet suggestions). I worried the surfaces, not just the edges, could have rub-off, too, but I didn't test it thoroughly, so take it all with a grain of salt. I was desperate and the Satin shene/super shene was all I could think of at the time to use. I did one or two coats, if I recall correctly. I don't know if it worked, because I didn't apply it to the edges (which were coated in wax at this point). I'm sorry I can't be of more help.
  6. Would regular saddle soap work? I had the same problem with some oil tan remnants I used, so I put some Super Shene on the pieces, hoping it would lock in the dye...
  7. Do you offer cutting leather lace to length (eg increments of yards)? I never need 25 or 50 yard spools for a dreamcatcher (to wrap the hoop), so I go elsewhere for the 3 yard suede lace cards by Realeather. One thing I was disappointed by is the low quality of the made-in-India stamps. For example, I ordered the locomotive train stamp and the finer details such as the grid lines on the cowcatcher and the spokes on the wheels don't show up on the leather (I used a half ton arbor press). It's like those details aren't high enough relief from the background. I imagine the original craftool steel stamp wouldn't have that problem, but I don't own one so I can't compare directly.
  8. It sounds like you're doing everything right (at least, to me), so I'm not sure what to say. I made a black piece using water-based Eco-flo. I put on 3 coats of dye. When I put on the finish, I saw a lot of bleed off onto the finishing sponge and I worried it would lighten the black. But, in the end, the black was still deep but now it was shiny and so it maybe looked a little lighter because of that. So, maybe there is an element of optical illusion in there due to the light reflection of the finish? I'm just thinking out loud.
  9. How long do you wait after dyeing and before applying the finish? You probably want to wait at least an hour at the minimum. How many coats of dye do you use? More coats will make the piece darker and help minimize any pull up from the finish. How do you apply the finish, e.g. with a sponge? I use a small, slightly damp piece of sponge for Super Shene (it's akin to Resolene). Applying the finish too heavily can cause streaking. Have you tried multiple light coats of finish?
  10. I don't think they have an Android app, but there is a free PC software program called FastStone Photo Resizer. It let's you batch resize one or multiple photos, as well as change the image file format (if I recall correctly). I used to use it a lot on my Windows XP computer, but obviouly that was a long time ago. Could be worth checking to see if it's still around for newer versions of Windows, because it makes resizing images a breeze.
  11. All the basketweaves! Very impressive! I haven't basketweaved, but I have tried some geometric stamps, and it's crazy difficult to keep things lined up and not skew this way or that. Your stamping appears impeccable!
  12. Looks terrific! The carving looks great to my eye - you got some really nice steep bevelling around the outside of the vines/stems and fowers. And I love the two-tone color, did you resist the tooled portion or use some other method? The stitching looks neat, I like how the thread matches the color of the tooled portions.
  13. Scrapbooking is taking photos and possibly other documents and organizing and presenting them in an artistic/artful manner. A plain photo album just has the pages with the photos in them. Maybe you arrange the photos in the order that you took them or by theme. For scrapbooking, you'd arrange them to tell a story, maybe add some text, such as location or a feeling the photo captures for you, stickers or shapes, etc. My mom made me a scrapbook years ago that contains photos of me, with some nice sticker artwork and words of encouragement. There are other hobbies that people do that are not advanced like woodworking and metal working: fiber crafts (knitting, crochet, embroidery, cross-stitch, etc.), baking, sculpture (clay), painting/coloring, sketching, model figures, etc. These are easily accessible and low budget. For me, I like to make end-products for myself or to give as gifts - I'm not interested in starting up a business and selling what I make, so I'm not recouping my costs for the leather supplies. Plus, I feel the learning curve for leather is much longer and steeper than other crafts, so it's easier for people such as myself to get discouraged and frustrated by all the practicing and failed projects. Sometimes I just want to do something for the weekend and have something to show for it before I go back to work the next week. Also, as has been mentioned, not everyone has the space for leather crafting. I use a plastic rolling craft cart to hold my supplies, and a collapsible small work table that's, like, 3'x3'. Wish I had my own crafting space, but that's just not possible. I can't leave stuff out for days and days for big/long projects in a shared living space like that.
  14. That is so b.s.! I'd recommend calling the corporate customer service to complain. I've been in classes with father-daughter, husband-wife, etc. The beginning carving class is nice, I enjoyed it a lot and learned a lot, too - I was the only one in the class that day, so it was like a private lesson. @Ailinea Great post, very insightful! I think another turn-off could be the price of tools, and how many tools you need to make something. The Cricut might be $200, but I've dropped over $1000 on leather stamps, punches, tools, the leather itself... the Cricut is versatile, leatherworking tools are so specialized: there's not just one set of hole punches, there are dozens, not just one awl but a half dozen, not just one stamp but hundreds. I think you had a good idea there about going to a fabric store to experiment with designs using cheaper materials than leather. Maybe they could start selling pleather ("vegan leather") for practicing. I agree that modern patterns (cosplay, armor, fashion pieces, etc.) would be cool - I am so not interested in sheathes, holsters, and saddles. I got an email fron Tandy yesterday or today, they are now starting to carry Barry King tools online-only.
  15. Beautiful work, most impressive! I hear you on the nitrile glove shortage thing - it's crazy how the prices have doubled. I look forward to seeing more photos of your creations. Edit: love the leather rose you made on your Beekin bag there! Your designs are so crisp and modern, too.
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