karlitob

Need a little help to get started

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Hi all, 

I'm new to leather work. I think I've looked at every single YouTube video on leather work in existence. I have also looked at every tool that could be purchased from all corners of the world. 

So in the end - I bought the cheapest set of tools I could find (74 pieces for E40 type thing) I could find, and bought remnants (Details below)

But I'm a bit stuck - the leather is aniline leather and all the YouTube videos are veg tan or chrome- it's kinda throwing me a bit. 

So two questions please

- What can I make?

- Where can I get free templates?

 

Thanks all Excited to start this journey - been looking to do this for such a long time. 

 

 

  • The unique Hide Leather Aniline waxed skin (heat) - one of the most exclusive, delicate and soft to the touch !!!
  • See below for full description of colours;
  • Rancho cognac-thick 1.3mm/1.5mm,
  • Rancho cognac Trust-thick 1.3mm/1.5mm,Rancho dark brown-thick 1.3mm/1.5mm,Rancho stone-thick 1.3mm/1.5mm,Rancho deer-thick 1.3mm/1.5mm, Salaria ciocio-thick 1.2mm/1.4mm, Pampas brown-thick 1.0mm/1.1mm, Vintage brown-thick 1.6mm, Rancho nero-thick 1.3mm/1.5mm, Rancho clay-thick 1.3mm/1.5mm, Indiana moro-thick 1.3mm/1.5mm, Salaria Antracite-thick 1.2mm/1.4mm, Mazzau brown-thick 0.9/1.1mm , Sauvage brown - thick 1/ 1.1mm

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2 hours ago, karlitob said:

So two questions please

- What can I make?

- Where can I get free templates?

Thanks all Excited to start this journey - been looking to do this for such a long time. 

From a relative new person as well- You ask what can I make? Anything leather that will pattern with those thicknesses- the thin leathers are great for making small wallets and bags or used with heavy canvas for totes and carriers. Double the layers for larger items.

If you have been looking to do this for a long time- the question is not "What can I make..." Think what do you WANT to make... if you make things you want- you will be more inclined to learn versus making something that you do not care for.

As for watching all the videos- they have a lot of patterns associated with them, as well as google.

Search harder grasshopper- your question has the answer in it (Hint: the "All the videos" comment) Not being sarcastic- just pointing out that patterns are out there.

Start with something small- seriously... not kidding... make 10 of them, learn to cut, stitch and finish each one. Maybe pint glass sleeves or coffee sleeves- pretty standard- but requires a bit of layout practice, cutting of curves, straight cuts as well as pretty spot on fitting of the cuts to make it fit the item (Pint glass sleeves are a big seller for the local brewery near me right now).

Fill out your profile- let others know where you are from as well- it will help for better advice for local sources of information and ideas.

Glad you are here- hope to see more from you!

Silver

Edited by SilverForgeStudio
Corrrectin Grammmmer mustakes

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17 minutes ago, SilverForgeStudio said:

Start with something small- seriously... not kidding... make 10 of them, learn to cut, stitch and finish each one.

:17: This is your best advice. Learning how to cut, stitch, finish edges, etc is what will take you far and the only way to learn it is to do it.

Welcome to the forum and have fun!

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Make Supply has free patterns that you can download immediately and begin working on things like wallets, etc. 

Welcome to this addicting avocation.  

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I would suggest you "youtube" Nigel armitage who produces first class video's of how to use the tools, your first steps will be to learn Saddle stitch sewing.

The Tandy sites have a good selection of basic patterns and instructions and Etsy.com also offers many patterns with little costs 

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What are you calling "analine" leather?  That's not actually a "type" of leather.  Likely what you have is chrome tanned.

To know what to make with it, we would need to know the type of leather you have and its approximate thickness.

 

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On 3/13/2019 at 3:29 PM, JLSleather said:

What are you calling "analine" leather?  That's not actually a "type" of leather.  Likely what you have is chrome tanned.

To know what to make with it, we would need to know the type of leather you have and its approximate thickness.

 

Understood - thank you. 

I think you are correct - it is chrome tan leather and sizes range from 1.1mm to 1.5mm thick. Thanks for your advice. 

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On 3/13/2019 at 1:37 PM, SilverForgeStudio said:

From a relative new person as well- You ask what can I make? Anything leather that will pattern with those thicknesses- the thin leathers are great for making small wallets and bags or used with heavy canvas for totes and carriers. Double the layers for larger items.

If you have been looking to do this for a long time- the question is not "What can I make..." Think what do you WANT to make... if you make things you want- you will be more inclined to learn versus making something that you do not care for.

As for watching all the videos- they have a lot of patterns associated with them, as well as google.

Search harder grasshopper- your question has the answer in it (Hint: the "All the videos" comment) Not being sarcastic- just pointing out that patterns are out there.

Start with something small- seriously... not kidding... make 10 of them, learn to cut, stitch and finish each one. Maybe pint glass sleeves or coffee sleeves- pretty standard- but requires a bit of layout practice, cutting of curves, straight cuts as well as pretty spot on fitting of the cuts to make it fit the item (Pint glass sleeves are a big seller for the local brewery near me right now).

Fill out your profile- let others know where you are from as well- it will help for better advice for local sources of information and ideas.

Glad you are here- hope to see more from you!

Silver

Thanks to you and everyone else for their response and advice. 

 

I got started and made an awful looking leather money pouch. I made my own template, stitched it inside out and popped a snap into it. It looks awful and I loved every minute. I think I caught the bug. 

 

Ultimately I would love to make good quality belts (formal and informal), sandals, high quality wallets, briefcases, messenger bags and ladies bags. For me and for gifts. So a lifetime of learning right there!   

 

Will fill out the profile - I'm across the pond in Ireland. 

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Check out the patterns part of this forum.  There's some free patterns in there.  Also a Google search for "free leather pattern" comes  up with a bunch.  I've also come across a couple of YouTube videos where the maker has the patterns available through the description.

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15 hours ago, karlitob said:

I got started and made an awful looking leather money pouch. I made my own template, stitched it inside out and popped a snap into it. It looks awful and I loved every minute. I think I caught the bug.  

Keep it- store it where you will see it often... then look at it after you complete a couple of runs of things- maybe 40-50 items... You should be able to see change. 

If you're in Ire get involved in the local scene as well!

Harry Rogers is a good source of info for belts (on the U'Tube)as well as a fellow on here who has a name with "Bermuda" in it- typing from a phone on the go my memory fails me (among other things as I get older! HA!) But he is a rather respectful fellow with a bit of wit and knowledge to his postings- look him up as well.

Go for it and yes- its quite a bug. 

EDIT: the fellow is @hwinbermuda

Edited by SilverForgeStudio
Added Bermuda info!

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2 hours ago, SilverForgeStudio said:

But he is a rather respectful fellow with a bit of wit and knowledge to his postings- look him up as well

As Goofy would say... 'Oh, Gorsh' it is kind of you to say this, but as @Matt S said in a post the other day ' Blimey Harry, I don't know who you've got me confused with but I want to buy him a pint.'  but I am a different Harry to the one you quoted.

 

On 3/13/2019 at 1:37 PM, SilverForgeStudio said:

Start with something small- seriously... not kidding... make 10 of them, learn to cut, stitch and finish each one.

And this is great advice, see Bikermutt's references to making batches. See

You learn as you go along. You WILL make mistakes, but hey that's learning, and hopefully in a batch of 10 the last 7 are good enough to gift, sell whatever. The first 3 are hopefully good enough, but will be teaching yourself.

Someone asked to buy the first handbag I ever made, back in 1978 ish, a couple of months ago when I was at a show... I said 'no' but offered to make a new one, because I know it was nowhere near up to the standard I can make now. Its there to remind me what my work was like, and hey, someone thought it was good enough to pay for... who'da thunk it.

btw  You are SOOOO lucky to have access to so many folk, almost all better than me, and willing to share. I cannot begin to watch all of the videos (or even many of them) as I am a 'set in my ways' traditionalist for most of my work.

The one note of caution is that there are many many ways to do it right. Find your own way, dont try to be the expert on screen, as you may not be comfortable with his or her techniques. I am still learning from what I see online.

Best

H

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18 hours ago, karlitob said:

I got started

Awesome.

18 hours ago, karlitob said:

made an awful looking leather money pouch

Even  better --- you gained some experience AND you honestly assessed the outcome. Both are important.

18 hours ago, karlitob said:

I made my own template

You planned --- BIG points here. Seeing where you want to go is BIG.

18 hours ago, karlitob said:

Ultimately I would love to make ....

And a desired outcome in mind.  You certainly are making progress already ;)

 

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I think somebody already recommended but I would suggest a couple of Al Stohlman books from Tandy to start out with. They're not free but worth the money.

1. The Art of Hand Sewing Leather .    https://www.tandyleather.com/en/product/the-art-of-hand-sewing-leather-book

2. The Art of Making Leather Cases .  https://www.tandyleather.com/en/product/the-art-of-making-leather-cases

The first one is a great guide of the different stitches you can do by hand. I've had my copy for years and have read it multiple times. The second one is good for project ideas. Some of the projects are a little dated but there's plenty of small things to start off with.

Most importantly don't beat yourself up for not having a project come out the way you hoped. Think about how it went wrong and how you can fix it or make it better next time. Just starting out can be intimidating especially after seeing some of the amazing work on this site but remember that most have been doing it for years. These skills take time. Be patient and every little improvement is a step in the right direction. 

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2 hours ago, hwinbermuda said:

but I am a different Harry to the one you quoted.

HA! not at all- I know you're not the Harry Rodgers on UTube... You are different another Harry indeed! 

Sorry to the OP if that was not clear- apologies! 

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One important point the nobody has made ... pics or it didn't happen! Don't be afraid to post your efforts. Mine are quite amateurish, but I still post them.

Posting pics is one of the best ways to get feedback on how to do things differently and/or better.

Above all else, the most important thing is "Enjoy what you do".

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39 minutes ago, Rockoboy said:

pics or it didn't happen!

Lost too much over the years to foreign rip offs, so dont post pics.

If I was hobbying or solely making one offs, maybe, but I need to get some money back before I am undercut by someone with no Health and Safety, Employee welfare, or Wage bill concerns.

My stuff is traditional, but its food in my belly.

Sorry Rockoboy, first time I've not seen eye to eye with you. ;)

Best

Harry

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1 minute ago, hwinbermuda said:

but I need to get some money back before I am undercut by someone with no Health and Safety, Employee welfare, or Wage bill

I totally agree with you Harry. No apology required. If I was making original pieces for customers or developing concepts, I would be more careful.

My market is myself, family, friends, work colleagues etc so I have no need to worry.

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When I started out. I didn’t have a cent. So I made a drawing,expanded it, used a ruler and did a “measured” drawing. And cut. Now I put a different step in before I cut. I make a pattern make sure it all fits together THEN I cut leather. I have a few bucks now bet I still make my own patterns. Wallets, card wallets, purses, messenger bags, keychains, you name it. Try it, see what you did that you don’t like and try again. But what ever you do... have fun.

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17 hours ago, Grumpymann said:

I make a pattern make sure it all fits together THEN I cut leather.

This is pretty much all I do. I have found out a few home-truths ... the most important is ... some leather is thicker than cereal box cardboard, so allowing for the thickness is a MUST! :blush:

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4 hours ago, Rockoboy said:

This is pretty much all I do. I have found out a few home-truths ... the most important is ... some leather is thicker than cereal box cardboard, so allowing for the thickness is a MUST! :blush:

Still trying to get that one down. For now I just leave a little ... “slop space” and pray. With MOST of my stuff 1/4 inch is not too much to club into behaving. If you have a better option PLEASE share it!

Edited by Grumpymann
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