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  1. I have been making veg tan notebook covers and antiquing them with Tandy's Eco-Flo Gel Antique. I can get a very nice look with lots of color variation. However I have found that the water-based antique is extremely susceptible to damage from water, even days after it is made. I looked on the board to find recommendations for a non-shiny top coat sealer, and couldn't find a good comparison of different products, so I went ahead and did my own testing on raw grain-side veg tan. I compared Fiebings Acrylic Resolene, Fiebings Leather Balm with Atom Wax, Fiebings Leather Sheen Acrylic Finish, and Angelus Matte Acrylic Finish. I used all at 100%, lightly shakened, with a small wool dauber dipped into the finish and wiped back and forth across a 3" x 3" square, starting wet and ending up dry, in a single coat. After drying for 20 minutes I spritzed water over them to check water resistance. Here are my findings: Resolene was the shiniest and the least absorbent of water. For my purpose it is too shiny. Angelus Matte was the second shiniest and tied with least absorbent of water. Leather Balm was the third shiniest, and the second most absorbent. Leather Sheen was least shiny, and most absorbent. There is an obvious direct correlation between shiny and water absorbency. I suspect that if I used the Leather Sheen in two or three coats it would perform better in water resistance and also become shinier, but I just did the single coat for comparison. Since I'd prefer to apply only one coat of finish I am going to use the Angelus Matte. It has the additional quality of being thin enough to easily airbrush.
  2. Hey y'all! I am an amateur leatherworker who has made a bit of a name for myself at local craft fairs and markets for vibrantly dyed leather goods (mostly collars, harnesses, and other items that don't need to be extremely flexible). So far I have achieved this using Fiebing's acrylic dye and an airbrush, but I am interested in branching out to use different products with a wider shade range. I am thinking of going with the Angelus acrylic leather paint but I often see the words "paint" and "dye" used interchangeably for acrylic products. Are these terms synonyms or are there substantial differences between a leather dye and a leather paint that I should be conscious of before trying to colour large strips of leather with the paint? Furthermore, is there any difference between an acrylic dye like Fiebings and a fluid acrylic pigment like those sold at craft stores? Thanks a bunch!
  3. I have been working on a journal cover. After a small misstep, I decided the nice golden colour that Angelus offers would complement the pattern and colouring done with an acrylic ink. My problem is that I have found finishing the dyes with an acrylic, such as Tandy's Professional Finish, seems to lead to cracking when the leather is bent, at least in the handful of bracelets, barrettes, and small journals I have done that way. It also occurred to me that the dye had simply dried the leather, and led to the cracking. To try to alleviate this from either cause I have creased and folded prior to dyeing The dye contains denatured alcohol and glycol ether. I have considered finishing it with clear-lac, but wonder if that is a good fit over the already acrylic-coated tooled area, and have also read that it does not handle well with being frequently bent. I also would like to keep the resisted part as bright as possible. Any suggestions would be welcome.
  4. Hi! I am newish to braiding leather dog leads, and am looking for leather lace colors other than the typical bronze, pewter, silver and gold that come as stock colors. So question is...how do I go about getting metallic colors (purples, blues, reds, greens, etc) is there a method that is better holding up to wear and tear? The handle would be the biggest wear. Would I use dye? Paint? Do you have a certain brand that is recommended? I braid 4 strand, witha core, if it matters. Laces are 3mm kangaroo leather from packer leather.
  5. Hi guys! Regarding using acrylic top coat for coating parts of my leather bag, would there be a safety issue? Im using Zelikovitz Acrylic Top Coat in Satin finish. It clearly says Toxic on the warning label. I understand this could mean the fumes while applying it as it does have a strong smell. I have a toddler around and I am concerned of heavy metal exposure because of the coating in some parts of the bag. With regards to it being on some parts in the bag that I routinely touch, would there be a safety issue with skin absorption with the dried up acrylic coat on the leather? thank you!
  6. Hi guys! Regarding using acrylic top coat for coating parts of my leather bag, would there be a safety issue? Im using Zelikovitz Acrylic Top Coat in Satin finish. It clearly says Toxic on the warning label. I understand this could mean the fumes while applying it as it does have a strong smell. With regards to it heong
  7. I am getting back into leatherworking now that my kids are getting older. I feel like there are some things I've forgotten, and/or I'm unsure that my old methods are acceptable to me now. Attached is a picture of bracelets I'm making. I am using fiebring dye with those little applicators that come with them and in small packs (a white puff on a little metal rod). I'm thinking that at the very least, they could be a little wider for my wider products, so I'm swiping over the leather one time. I'm reading now that some of you dilute the dye and dip for a better coat, so if you do that, how do you lay it out to dry or hang it without marring the product? I suppose I could apply some sort of resist in the letters? So, after it dries, I'm using Fiebring sheen for the finish, which is a flexible acrylic. I feel like I am wasting/spilling/soaking more of the sheen into the cloth than actually gets on the leather. Does the type of fabric I use make a difference? I also find that it pulls more of the dye off even if I've already rubbed the leather with a wet cloth. Am I doing something wrong? I used to use a spray but I don't remember what it was and I'm not sure I want to use something that might be more toxic and require a mask. What are my options for a good finish? PS. I really wish the reds were less pink! It's a beautiful color but it annoys me that I can't get true red
  8. I see lots of discussion about using acrylic dyes and paints but haven’t seen anyone layout out their best practices. I am looking to airbrush acrylic paint to create colored handbags. What kind of steps do people find work best for surface prep. Can you apply neatsfoot oil prior to painting. Do you dilute your paint when painting large surfaces? Any other tips and ideas related to this subject will be much appreciated.
  9. This piece has a really nice finish that I'd like to duplicate. I haven't done any antiquing before but I've read some notes on here. I'm a little confused about how to get the look if I've already dyed/painted with Acrylic (Angelus)? Do I still need to resist, or does acrylic do that for me? Any guesses on the products? Fiebrings and Tan-Kote?
  10. This is a journal cover I made as a gift for my sisters birthday. I used common over the counter acrylic paint from walmart (because that is what I had on hand at the time). Sealed with Satin Sheen, and the image seems to be holding up well. Interested to see what it will look like as it ages. The two issues I have with this one is the pen holder! I realized I just hate the design and am going to do something different on the next one. Also, a tooth on my stitching fork bent, which caused some a funky stitching line on the final product. Going to look for some better quality tools here shortly. Thanks for looking.
  11. So I've been making straps with names painted on them in acrylic paint. The straps are 10oz Herman oak leather. I started to use 100% neatfoot on the backside only to soften the leather up after dying about a month ago. Now I'm fining that some of them are having the paint on the frontside falling off. Even after I seal them with multiple acrylic sealers. I also am finding the dye is leeching off too. Any suggestions on what else to use to soften the leather up besides a oil bc I think that is the problem bc I have never had this problem before using the neatsfoot
  12. Hi, I'm a little perplexed about which finishing products to use for various projects. For example, I see people carve and dye leather, then put an acrylic finish on it. Other times they dye and then put a leather conditioner or something like Snow Seal conditioner on it. Some talk about acrylic resolene. If someone uses acrylic, then 6 months from now wants to put some conditioner on the leather, you cant do that because the acrylic blocks the conditioner from working into the leather...so how would you ever condition old projects that have acrylic on them? What would you finish the following project with? And how would you go about conditioning the leather months from now? Book cover, knife sheath, motorcycle seat, purse, belt, key chain fob, guitar strap? Thanks
  13. I have some questions regarding acrylic resolene and neatsfoot oil that I am hoping someone can answer: 1. How long will acrylic resolene last? If it is on a mask that is worn once or twice a year what is the expected life? 2. Will neatsfoot oil penetrate a piece that has been covered with acrylic resolene, let's say the piece has seen moderate use for a few to several years.
  14. Okay y'all, so I'm a newbie to this forum and I'm still trying to navigate through the pages, so if this is something that has been resolved or answered, just kindly if y'all will link me to the response! So my delema is that I've been using acrylic resoline as a finish on all my leather goods that I make, which overall leaves a good presentation, as far as sheen and sealing/protecting goes. But what the problem ends up being is that once you bend the leather around say for a belt or like a watch strap, the Resoline seems to wrinkle and actually crack over time and use. Have any of you had this problem before? Is this just how it works out, and if it is, is there something somewhat like acrylic res that I can use? I'll drop some pics for y'all so y'all can see what I mean.
  15. Leatherworkers, I have these sets of tapered, watch strap patterns available for order. The set includes the following tapers: 24/22mm, 22/20mm, 20/18mm, and 18/16mm. They are made from 1/4" acrylic, with laser etched markers. Each pattern comes with a hole on one end to hang up, or tie together, for organization. PayPal (tylernewberry gmail com), $45, US shipped, international rates available. Let me know if you have any questions!
  16. Hello everyone! This is my first post but I am in search of someone who does or sells clear acrylic templates for horse tack. I have one for bronc halters & spur straps but I am looking for one to do tack sets or headstalls & breast collars separately. Or even already cut out tack blanks would be great too! Any help or pointing in the right direction is appreciated!!
  17. Leatherworkers, I have these sets of tapered, watch strap patterns available for order. The set includes the following tapers: 24/22mm, 22/20mm, 20/18mm, and 18/16mm. They are made from 1/4" acrylic, with laser etched markers. Each pattern comes with a hole on one end to hang up, or tie together, for organization. PayPal (tylernewberry gmail com), $45, US shipped, international rates available. Let me know if you have any questions!
  18. Leatherworkers, I have these sets of tapered, watch strap patterns available for order. The set includes the following tapers: 24/22mm, 22/20mm, 20/18mm, and 18/16mm. They are made from 1/4" acrylic, with laser etched markers. Each pattern comes with a hole on one end to hang up, or tie together, for organization. PayPal (tylernewberry gmail com), $45, US shipped, international rates available. Let me know if you have any questions!
  19. FranM


    Hello, leather experts! My name is Fran, and I am a Yankee living in the UK! I decided to join this forum after a hundred or so different Google searches led me here for one question or another. I have a tiny little bookbinding business (tiny as in me, myself, and I are the only employees) and I am starting to get involved more in leather working as I would like to master being able to craft my own covers to order rather than having to order half-cows for every colour I decide I want to try, or a customer requests custom! I am mostly interested in techniques for mastering acrylic application. I like the huge range of colours available for solid fashion colours as opposed to traditional finishes. I have nothing against the classics, but my business market is F-L-O-O-D-E-D with every imaginable shade of traditional brown & black journal, so in an effort to separate myself from the herd I really want to master acrylics! Can't wait to learn from the assembled masters here! Cheers, Fran M. https://www.citrusbookbindery.com
  20. I have some regular acrylic paint, not the stuff designed for leather like Angelus acrylic. Will it work on leather? If so, when should I burnish my edges? I am going to be painting the entire piece up to the edges and I am worried that burnishing will ruin the paint... thoughts?
  21. Cutting dies are amazing... but they can be a big initial investment. If you're not ready to jump into such a huge commitment, I think it is time for you to check out some acrylic templates. I have used this company prior to getting cutting dies made and still occasionally use them for mocking up more complex designs. They are very affordable in terms of what you get and the turn around time is fantastic. Company Details The company I use for acrylic templates is called Ponoko. From their website: What Can They Do? They offer a *ton* of different materials you can laser cut into. You can cut into various thicknesses and colors of acrylic, cardboard, wood, leather, metal and pretty much anything else you can think of. You need to have a pretty good understanding of Adobe Illustrator / Auto CAD / Inkscape (free) / CorelDraw for this to work out well. They have various "templates" where you can place your designs and they have specific directions on their website you need to follow to get everything to turn out correctly. You can do some awesome things like etching into the material to show it's dimensions or lines (in this case I used it show it was a 20mm width design as well as where the "fold" lines are). Pricing I got all these designs cut out into acrylic templates for $56.59 shipped. This was on the 31" x 15" piece of acrylic but they have smaller sizes too which cost less. The designs were cut out on 3mm thick clear acrylic. Turnaround Time This was the fifth order I've placed with them. The most recent order was placed October 23rd, went into production on October 26th, was shipped on October 30th and arrived on November 2nd. So roughly 10 days from order to delivery at my front door. Pretty wild. Outcome Here are a few of the templates I've had made which help in either deciding if I'm going to get cutting dies made out of the designs or for more one off designs. - Tall wallet - Two piece watch straps which I ended up turning into cutting dies. - NATO straps Final Thoughts As I said -- this is a good company to check out if you're still cutting out projects based off hand cut card board templates. This will definitely help your game! I know this sounds like a company shill post, but I'm 100% not affiliated with Ponoko and receive nothing from this post. I just think more people need to know about them since they're so affordable. Let me know if you have any questions!
  22. I've had good results using acrylic on veg tanned leather, but now I have a project that requires applying acrylic on oily leather. Is that possible? Do I need to treat the leather in any way before applying acrylic? Thanks in advance, RG
  23. I realized while painting pictures that when you use acrylics and they dry on your palette. This is an plastic type of palette ,not wooden one you get a mix of all the colours and you can pull the skin off when it is dry. These are the skins and they are great inlays or even parts for leather or even clothing. They are actually quite strong. This last one is an Elk hide no, not made of paint skins.
  24. Hello everyone, I am brand spanking new to the leather world! I have just started making leather fire helmet sheilds and so far, so good! Once I was done cutting and tooling the leather, I painted the whole shield white and waited for it to dry. I then came back and painted the background and a bugle on it in back and silver, and to my surprise turned out pretty good for my first time. Every thing to this point has been painted with eco flo, cova color. I then tried putting on super shene and within 2 strokes of the brush the paint started to smear. I have seen several post describing this and one of the biggest things that are mention is buffing the leather. I have tried to buff it and it doesnt seem like anything is coming off, so I am not really sure what to do at this point. Now understand that these shields will endure temps of over 1000 degrees at times. I need to know what I can put on them to seal them from the elements and looking for any advise from others who have made sheilds in the past. Also, am I using the wrong paint, I have seen some people have used 1 shot oil based enamel? Any help would be greatly appreciated!
  25. Hi folks, I have a about every dye available to man for dying leather. Yes I do. A ton of stuff I will never use again. So I thought before I change the acrylic I am using I would ask some of you here what you like and why you like it in acrylic finishes. I make holsters mostly and need the features that most acrylics offer. I have used Fiebings then went to Eco Flo satin which I like but I noticed Angelus has a satin finish too. I usually buy in larger quantities so I wanted to see if any of you have used Angelus satin finish or have maybe found something you think is a better acrylic in a satin finish before I commit to something for the next 100 or so holsters. I have found that you need to work with something for a while to truly get the best from it. Please post what you like about any acrylic product, the features that you find most appealing, and let's face it life is a trade off most of the time so mention what could be better with the product as well. Your experiences would be very valuable to me and maybe some others.
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