It was in my mind for a long time to finally hand sew my first handbag. The ingredients were simple. First of all the best vegetable tanned leather I could get my hands on, simple design, hand stitched with saddle stitch, best thread, no zippers (they will break at first), and some well thought of practical details. Overall it took me about 10 hours to cut and sew this bag.
A while ago I took test cast of the Indian Head rom Feinschmuckout of solid copper and turned it into a button. It now serves the locking for the bag.
Last friday I had an appointment with Mr. Breuninger the owner of the Breuninger Tannery in Schorndorf Germany.The Breuningers tann since 1843 and since 5 generations so from the specs they know their business. Already have received a couple of leather samples I really wan´t to see the factory and to have a closer look at the hides. They do only vegetable tann from german cattle and emphasize on the natural look of the hides.
I was really impressed from what I saw. The aniline tanning results in really characteristic hides by preserving the natural structure of the leather. Mr. Beuninger was really informative and helpful in explaining various aspects of his profession. Finally I bought some hides and reserved one. I guess we found another, or the supplier for future Feinschmuck products.
First of all thanks to U. Tauber to arrange this great workshop. One of the top leather crafters of the world Armin Dobstetter – Custom Leather from Ellwangen hosted a two days workshop where we did a wooden surface belt. Armin started to work with leather when he was 14 years old. I assume that was more than 30 years ago. Within this time he won many leather craft competitions in the States. He is mostly known within the biker scene by his custom leather seats.
Within his shop you only can try to imagine what knowledge and experience he gained within some decades. Armin never got tired during the workshop to answer the questions by us in the most detailed way. He is not afraid to share his knowledge. His argument is that it took him about 30 years to gain it and if he shares it to someone he is already further until he might reach his skills. This made his workshop really special and is the way it should be done. It even went so far that on the last day we really had to hurry to finish our belts.
If you really look for something special made out of leather and want to make your motorbike stand out of the crowd Armin is the guy to talk to. Thanks a lot for your time and inputs you gave us last week – hope to see you soon again.
Last week I traveled with the Feinschmuck collection to Frankfurt to attend an ordershow which was hosted by B74 & Amtraq. Some impressions I was able to capture a lot not. It was a great event in an even greater setup. Thanks Kami and his team & Amtraq to make this show happen. It was amazing to be part with a quite exclusive set of labels/brands there. Visited by some of the best german stockists who had all the time to choose their goods for 2014.
Just to name a few: Tellason, Scarti Labs, Otter Wax, Passion France, Filson, Merz b. Schwanen, Blue Blanket, 3sixteen, Fidelity, Levi´s vintage Clothing, Made and Crafted, Feinschmuck, Croots, Tanner Goods, Topo Designs, Midori, Knowledge Cotton, Reds (shame on me if I forgot a brand).
DC4 Japanese Denim Store – Berlin
Union Special Hemming Service
Just before the Bread & Butter started in Berlin I made a quick visit at the DC4 Store.I was very lucky to meet Olaf there who was kindly enough to share some of his very detailed knowledge about denim and esp. Japanese Denim with me. And even more luck I had that right at the moment the store owner Daniel needed his pair of jean hemmed by Olaf. So I could document the steps of hemming which DC4 does quite exclusively in Germany (please let me know If you knew other Stores who offer chain stitch hemming service on a Union Special sewing machine).
- quick after this post Tim contacted me that Jeanspaleis is doing a similar service in the Netherlands. Check his post a while ago about their service – here:
With every pair of jean you buy at DC4 (marked by the print on the inside pocket) you get the hemming there for free. Other options to upgrade/customize it, are the leather patch service, you can get one or all patches which are laser made sewn on your jean.
So if you are a serious denim lover here is the place to get some really special crafted Japanese Jeans and the advice needed to make your final decision.
An now comes the sad part. Just a day after I made those images the shop got robbed. I do not know if the shop was left totally empty but as I wrote all Jeans have got the DC4 print on the pockets. So please check any premium Japanese Jeans you buy or getting offered and report it to DC4 in case you spot the their Stamp or tries to remove of a print.
Whilst being at the Amtraq stall with Feinschmuck, I had a lot of chances to examine the wide range of products handmade by Croots in England. They have widened their product range a lot, included new colors and offering Horween leather on some bags instead of English bridle leather. Solid and skillfully made, using the best leathers available, the strongest webbing and full brass material their products are sure to gain a life time gear status at your wardrobe.
I arrived yesterday in Berlin, before heading to the Tempelhof I decided to use the time for the Christoph Schlingensief Exhibition at the KW Institute for Contemporary Art in Berlin. The exhibition will be ended by 19th of January and will then be shown at the MoMA NYC, so now is the time to have a look at his works. The Church of Fear is located outside so I had the chance to already have a look before entering the exhibition. Already I can say, he died too young …
Boxwood pocket knife – Passion France
“POISSON CULOT BU”
RecentlyI had the chance to have a closer look at the Passion France knife collection. A real nightmare to narrow down your first choice with so many options. Be prepared to buy at least one and leave with at least one (which you did not buy now) on your wish list.
This Laguiole knife with a box wood handle (buchbaum) has the traditional salvia/sage shaped blade. I love the elegant, newer design of the Laguiole blades but I went for this knife for a more rugged looking one. The box wood looks a bit like ivory. After I bought it Wolfgang told me it´s a traditional sailors knife by its design. The steel plate at the end of the handle serves as a tobacco / pipe tamper, which is a nice feature. (however its a bit too big for my Missouri Meerschaum Corn Cob pipe).
The leather sheat wasn´t an option for me at first look be-cause I think a knife should be able to withstand the abuse made by other contents in a trouser pocket. BUT if you see and touch this nicely leather sheats hand made out of Hermes leather in France – not buying it wasn´t an option anymore.
Thanks Sabine and Wolfgang for this, to say in in Eric´s words a life time gear.