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TomE

Who Does This?

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Does this side stitch on a buckle turn serve a purpose other than exposing the thread to wear and breakage?  What is the stitch called?  I added it to this replacement bridle cheek piece to match existing.  On my own work I stitch straight up against the buckle and skip the side stitch.  Am I missing something?

 

bridle-cheek-stitch.thumb.jpg.85829d76075f79d818ed54908f7da1a9.jpg

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Apparently many do...

Stitching Belt Buckle Folds - How Do I Do That? - Leatherworker.net

HAND-STITCHED LEATHER BELT - BACKYARD DENIM

DSC_3222.JPG

Men's Wrangler Rugged Wear® Center Stitch With Rivet Belt

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As far as wear and breakage, I guess it depends on the product and its use.  An average person's belt probably is less of a risk as compared to horse tack.  

If it bothers you, don't do it.  Simple as that.  If the straps you are making will be subject to a lot of rubbing in that area, then it is definitely more prone to failure.

I don't know what to call it, maybe a "side stitch" or "edge stitch" perhaps.  I do use that stitch and have done so on belts with no negative effects.  I also have used it on wallets and watch straps.

Nigel Armitage is, in my opinion, an expert on leatherworking.  He uses the "edge stitch" in this demonstration video.  

 

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18 minutes ago, Tugadude said:

Apparently many do...

Yes, it’s a thing. I’m uncertain if it’s functional or just a look.  My go to resources gave mixed results. Steinke (“Bridlework”) mentions that one or two side stitches are often added “to gather up” the buckle turn. Doesn’t give it a name or say whether it improves wear. This side stitch is inconsistently used by makers of expensive tack. Couldn’t find mention of this stitch by Stohlman in books on hand sewing, case making, and belts. As you said, I guess it’s my tack my rules.  With bridles it’s usually the points or the buckle turn that tears out and the stitching isn’t damaged. 

Edited by TomE

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It is nothing that I do, or would do.

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48 minutes ago, TomE said:

Yes, it’s a thing. I’m uncertain if it’s functional or just a look.  My go to resources gave mixed results. Steinke (“Bridlework”) mentions that one or two side stitches are often added “to gather up” the buckle turn. Doesn’t give it a name or say whether it improves wear. This side stitch is inconsistently used by makers of expensive tack. Couldn’t find mention of this stitch by Stohlman in books on hand sewing, case making, and belts. As you said, I guess it’s my tack my rules.  With bridles it’s usually the points or the buckle turn that tears out and the stitching isn’t damaged. 

I checked my two "go to" resources, Valerie Michael's 'The Leatherworking Handbook' and Al Stohlman's 'The Art of Hand Sewing Leather' and neither shows the "side stitch" on belts.  Just shows there's more than one way to do things I suppose.  

There are other areas where folks differ, for example, to recess stitches in a groove or not.  Some say it is an "American" thing.  And those who say it is unnecessary point to hundred year old English saddles that are holding up just fine, sans grooves.  

In the end people just need to commit to doing what they think is best and let others do likewise.  And of what you are doing fails, evaluate and change if necessary.

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19 minutes ago, Tugadude said:

There are other areas where folks differ, for example, to recess stitches in a groove or not.  Some say it is an "American" thing.  And those who say it is unnecessary point to hundred year old English saddles that are holding up just fine, sans grooves.  

In the end people just need to commit to doing what they think is best and let others do likewise.  And of what you are doing fails, evaluate and change if necessary.

The only thing I use a groover for is to seat a stud hook in the platform of a cheek piece.  The groove made in the flesh side between the layers holds the base of the stud hook in place.  I don't like the idea of removing the strongest part of the leather (the grain) for a stitch line.  Kind of defeats the purpose of saddle stitching as a stronger method of sewing, which is another debate....

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5 hours ago, TomE said:

Does this side stitch on a buckle turn serve a purpose other than exposing the thread to wear and breakage?  

I have done that on straps. It helps pull the two leathers tighter together at the edge. . . . . .  But. a: I've done it at both ends of the fold-over and b: I cut a narrow slot for the thread to sit down into so it was no higher than the edge and c: at the cut edge of the fold-over I did a stitch over that edge as well.

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@TomE

I have done it on some tack as weeel as on a couple of belts. I like the look of it, and I think it can help in holding the piece together for the first couple of stitches so that it doesn't slide around. Not that it is a huge problem though.

Apart from that: really nice work !

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I think it is a "look" as much as a function. I like the look of it, doesn't seem to add much to the time of assembly, so why not?

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Jo from JH Leather does it as well, I've learned it from her. I feel that the stitch helps to pull the straps together behind the buckle.

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Thanks to everyone for your comments and ideas.  I'm reconsidering whether to routinely add a side stitch to buckle turns. It is more popular than I realized.  I enjoyed reading your viewpoints. 

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it is so the two pieces dont or cant be pulled apart and create extra stress on your first stitch. 

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Ok, I have never used that side stitch. I keep all stitching in-line and if that one or two threads becomes severed, it all unravels. Go thru the first hole, then thru the second, the. Come back up thur the first hole and continue on down. That side stitch is just aesthetics, it really doesn’t do anything other than give it some certain style that probably the men in GQ probably would like to see on their belts. To me it’s just a wasted stitch!

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On 8/29/2022 at 7:12 PM, TomE said:

Does this side stitch on a buckle turn serve a purpose other than exposing the thread to wear and breakage?  What is the stitch called?  I added it to this replacement bridle cheek piece to match existing.  On my own work I stitch straight up against the buckle and skip the side stitch.  Am I missing something?

 

bridle-cheek-stitch.thumb.jpg.85829d76075f79d818ed54908f7da1a9.jpg

I do this on all the tack i make and most i repair, if a piece of tack does not have it i will do like for like. This maybe of interest.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZmgxmtkvISs

I  don't stitch back one i go through the first stitch mark then cross the threads and make the stitch don't pull tight then put my fixed loop butted up against the crossed thread stitch use my awl on the second stitch mark, put the needle into the second stitch mark through the loop leave it in and then pull the crossed thread stitch tight then make the full stitch and carry on stitching. And it does pull the turn nice and tight around the buckle being used. This is how i was taught by two Master Saddlers when i did my training. And things change from time to time but i am pretty certain most English style tack will have this method i am for certain the tack made in the UK will.

Hope this helps

JCUK

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I think the appearance of thread overlapping the edge is unattractive.  I usually just continue my stitch across the belt below the buckle slot and back down the other side.

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Thanks, @jcuk.  So the sole purpose of this stitch is to gather the turn tightly around the buckle?  I normally place the fixed loop 2-3 stitches away from the buckle end of the stitch line.  Is it better to place it closer to the buckle as in your description?  Always interested in refinements.  

@sbrownn, I've read that stitching across a strap may cause it to tear along the perforations.  Perhaps more of an issue with horse tack than for a belt.  The bridle cheek piece in the picture is a replacement for one that was torn by a naughty horse.  Are you jumping from one edge to the other or continuously sewing across the width of the strap?  

Edited by TomE

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18 minutes ago, TomE said:

Thanks, @jcuk.  So the sole purpose of this stitch is to gather the turn tightly around the buckle?  I normally place the fixed loop 2-3 stitches away from the buckle end of the stitch line.  Is it better to place it closer to the buckle as in your description?  Always interested in refinements.  

@sbrownn, I've read that stitching across a strap may cause it to tear along the perforations.  Perhaps more of an issue with horse tack than for a belt.  Are you jumping from one edge to the other or continuously sewing across the width of the strap?  

Thats how i was taught and when i see them done the way you describe it always looks odd to me, its much more tidy the on the first stitch and tighter less play. Yes  to stitch across the strap will weaken the strap i use to ride race horses for a living and i can tell this i would not ride a horse where the reins have been stitched across the strap and yes i seen this and said the same just because you get away with it does not make it right. 

Try it and see what you think.

Hope this helps

JCUK 

Edited by jcuk

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2 hours ago, TomE said:

Thanks, @jcuk.  So the sole purpose of this stitch is to gather the turn tightly around the buckle?  I normally place the fixed loop 2-3 stitches away from the buckle end of the stitch line.  Is it better to place it closer to the buckle as in your description?  Always interested in refinements.  

@sbrownn, I've read that stitching across a strap may cause it to tear along the perforations.  Perhaps more of an issue with horse tack than for a belt.  The bridle cheek piece in the picture is a replacement for one that was torn by a naughty horse.  Are you jumping from one edge to the other or continuously sewing across the width of the strap?  

Continuously but only for belts not for any horse stuff. 

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On 8/29/2022 at 10:12 PM, TomE said:

Does this side stitch on a buckle turn serve a purpose other than exposing the thread to wear and breakage?  What is the stitch called?  I added it to this replacement bridle cheek piece to match existing.  On my own work I stitch straight up against the buckle and skip the side stitch.  Am I missing something?

 

bridle-cheek-stitch.thumb.jpg.85829d76075f79d818ed54908f7da1a9.jpg

some crafters do like this.

I haven't seen this stitching being broken till the time, so you can give it a try

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I'm sure it is probably stronger but it comes at the expense of changing the look so you have to determine for yourself when to use it.  

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