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Loudcherokee

Ostrich Foot Wallet

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This is my first experience with any "exotic" skins, and I really enjoyed it. Ostrich was different to work with. Hard to see stitch holes and stitch lines in the glossy black, but smooth as butter to stitch through. 

I made this one for myself to match a pair of ostrich foot boots I have. My boots are black cherry however, so I may make another in the future if I can find some black cherry ostrich foot. 

The bill pocket is 2-3 ounce veg tan, and interior is a mix of 1-2 ounce black lining cowhide, 2-3 ounce veg tan, and ostrich. 

Of course, open to critiques. Im still learning to cut a straight line, but I'm getting better. I do wish I could get that nice offset stitch where each stitch is at an angle, but not sure what I'm doing wrong here. I stitch towards myself, starting with the left needle, put through, make a cross, pull threads towards me, return right needle behind thread in hole, then pull down with left hand and up with right hand to tighten. My stitching chisels are diamond shaped so the leave the angled diamond hole. 

LC

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Youre off to a good start but there is Much room for improvement. i would like to chime in as im a wallet maker myself.

Use a ruler for straight lines. lol

1: all the edges could be finished alot better they look to rough imo especially for the kind of wallet i think youre trying to make....Do you leave a cut allowance when youre making your wallet pocket panels? it helps to make things oversized and trim to a final dimension after glue up..it makes things alot easier when its time to finish the edges.

2: the contrast stitching would look alot better if it was straight and even. ( i use and edge creaser to not only crease my all my edges but also as a guide for my pricking irons so i can keep my margins in check )

3: as for the slanted stitch i switched from diamond pricking irons to french style but i still would end up with one side of slanted stitches and one side straight stitches ...so to remedy this i punch my finished interior panel and outside wallet panel separate, instead of trying to punch thru all the layers of leather at once. also in doing this it makes the stitch angled on both sides of the wallet. It takes some extra time to make sure all your stitching holes will line up but its worth it in the final product. i noticed a big improvement in the finish of my wallets since doing this.

hope i dont sound to harsh as im only trying to help =)

keep up the good work :thumbsup:

 

 

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6 minutes ago, CastleLeatherWorks said:

Youre off to a good start but there is Much room for improvement. i would like to chime in as im a wallet maker myself.

Use a ruler for straight lines. lol

1: all the edges could be finished alot better they look to rough imo especially for the kind of wallet i think youre trying to make....Do you leave a cut allowance when youre making your wallet pocket panels? it helps to make things oversized and trim to a final dimension after glue up..it makes things alot easier when its time to finish the edges.

2: the contrast stitching would look alot better if it was straight and even. ( i use and edge creaser to not only crease my all my edges but also as a guide for my pricking irons so i can keep my margins in check )

3: as for the slanted stitch i switched from diamond pricking irons to french style but i still would end up with one side of slanted stitches and one side straight stitches ...so to remedy this i punch my finished interior panel and outside wallet panel separate, instead of trying to punch thru all the layers of leather at once. also in doing this it makes the stitch angled on both sides of the wallet. It takes some extra time to make sure all your stitching holes will line up but its worth it in the final product. i noticed a big improvement in the finish of my wallets since doing this.

hope i dont sound to harsh as im only trying to help =)

keep up the good work :thumbsup:

 

 

Not harsh at all thank you for taking time to provide feedback. 

I do use a straight edge to cut my lines, but this particular skin was slippery! Halfway through my cut the straight edge slipped. 

Also, I was using an aluminum straight edge. I need to get a good steel one. On one cut, I actually cut into the straight edge with my blade. Wouldnt have happened with steel. 

I've thought about punching my holes before assembly, but fear that due to my cutting habits, my holes will not line up once I'm ready to stitch. The templates I used for this wallet actually had the stitching holes marked too, but I did not use them, instead opting for wing dividers on that glary surface. Hindsight, eh?

As for a creaser, I have a set of 4, and honestly cannot figure out how to get them to work. The creases on the pockets you see have been gone over multiple times and are still faint. Ive tried heating them with a torch lighter, and still no luck. Also, have a very difficult time running them straight. 

I did leave room for trimming after final assembly, and feel like this one came out way better than my first 2 attempts at a wallet. After everything is assembled I smooth and flush the edges with a belt sander mounted up in a clamp on my workbench. I also have a drum mounted up in my dremel on a drill press stand. I think here I need to get some finer grit paper and try to finish the edges better that way. 

LC

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on cutting thin and/or slippery leather

1. use a straightedge with cork or rubber on the back

2. use a rotary knife

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Or mark the leather and use a half-moon knife. No ruler required to cut straight lines with those.

Or, mark the leather and use a Japanese skiving knife to cut it 'in stages'. No ruler required either (actually, rulers are advised against when using these knives, as their super thin edge can be easily dented).

Glue your pieces and, again, use a divider to mark the stitching line and then punch your holes with a chisel.

Also, you can use black thread so that any slips in the stitching are much less obvious.

Also too, get yourself a #0 beveler and refine those edges.

Edited by Hardrada

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1 hour ago, Hardrada said:

Or mark the leather and use a half-moon knife. No ruler required to cut straight lines with those.

Or, mark the leather and use a Japanese skiving knife to cut it 'in stages'. No ruler required either (actually, rulers are advised against when using these knives, as their super thin edge can be easily dented).

Glue your pieces and, again, use a divider to mark the stitching line and then punch your holes with a chisel.

Also, you can use black thread so that any slips in the stitching are much less obvious.

Also too, get yourself a #0 beveler and refine those edges.

I have a round knife by Al Stohlman I believe. I'm still practicing with it. I do use it to cut out my holster shapes and stuff on thick veg tan. I haven't thought to use it for the thinner stuff. I have a Japanese skiving knife too but can't seem to keep a good edge on it. I use a piece of 8/9 veg tan with green Rouge on the soft side to strop. 

I beveled these edges with a #2. Ive got a beveler kit that goes up to 5 I believe. 

I still need practice with alot of these specialty tools. Thats what all these little projects are. This wallet is only the 5th or 6th thing ive made. Still trying to learn along the way. 

LC

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2 hours ago, Loudcherokee said:

I have a Japanese skiving knife too but can't seem to keep a good edge on it. I use a piece of 8/9 veg tan with green Rouge on the soft side to strop. 

Stropping them will only get you so far. I know from being there myself. Eventually you'll need to sharpen them or remove chipped edges.

This is what I use to sharpen my knives: https://www.danswhetstone.com/product/bench-stones/

A Soft Arkansas (Medium) and a Hard Arkansas (Fine) in 8x2x1/2 should suffice. Since the Japanese skiving knives are straight edge and single-bevel, sharpening them with stones is real easy.

Edited by Hardrada

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