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 from Feinschmuckout of solid copper and turned it into a button. It now serves the locking for the bag. Interchangable with other buttons and the leather straps can be easily changed as well over the years. This is just a start, I will produce more leather tote bags soon – waiting for more leather hides.
be-cause / Feinschmuck leather workshop – Ulmia Ott workbench
For a long time I´ve been watching this vintage Ulmia Ott workbench in Manfreds Garage. When I saw the restoration project of a similar Ulmia workbench @ TopHatter I finally asked him how he liked the idea of “getting rid” of this workbench. Actually he needed more space be-cause of the just bought Feinschmuck Fiat 238. So we roughly cleaned the bench, let it dry for a day and moved it into my home yesterday. This is the workspace where Feinschmucks buckles are hand sewn and turn into a belt from now on.
It was just a matter of time with so many riding family members and that I had to do a Riders Belt – Reiter Gürtel. So that is what i came up with. A mouthpiece / snaffle bit belt best for slim belts of 25mm and a horseshoe belt with 38mm. Both buckles are UK made and massive brass casted. Hand sewn in saddle stitch on veg. tanned leather from a german tannery.
Actually my mother gave me the task to finally field test if a dishwasher damages the sharpness of a blade by giving me a kitchen knife with a broken plastic handle. But instead I took the hammer and got rid of the plastic crap and see if I could attach a new handle.
A while ago at my Schachenmayr Tannery visit I got a piece of Cowbell leather, extremely thick and real hard and durable. I cut out the rough shape for the handles out of this leather and riveted them on the handle with some solid copper rivets. Then I started to fine shape the leather by cutting more and more off. Not a stunning beauty but this knife was saved from the trash bin and probably (due to the leather handle) will no longer be but into the dishwasher.
Yesterday I came by Adam & Eve and grabbed a pack of the new L.I. Sounder Anchor Shades. The rubber tube and the way it is attached to the leather has changed a bit and makes it look even better and solid. Goot to see a already well designed product getting improved. See here some images from the previous version. Supplied now to Amtraq distributed shops.
Ok right now I do not see much of a use for sunglasses by this kind of foggy weather but plan ahead. You might need one of those Anchors to protect your glasses/shades for the upcoming christmas holidays or new year tropical/asian holidays – have fun.
Dukes Artisanwas also invited to B-74 5th. Anniversary Party last week. And it was a joy to watch the Artisans at work. Painting leather so skilled and nicely. Each piece is unique and has its own character. A very amazing fact is that Dukes uses the skills of former (and unemployed) porcelain painters and turned their craft on a different medium – leather. By this they were not only be able to create one of the finest belts, no they also helped to preserve the skills of highly skilled artisans who were no longer needed in the collapsing porcelain painting branch. It was really nice to finally meet Uschi Klein and Michael Herzog from Dukes Artisan.
Ok i lied it´s an American Penny and not a Pfennig but I hope it works just as well as a talisman. I have to do some research in my drawers to find some old Pfennige but as a first draft the belt turned out pretty well. Sharper tools and a bit more space for the penny will give the belt a more professional look. The belt or the idea for the belt was born when I was asked to make a small belt (50cm) for the two year old daughter of friends. But a penny is too big for that little belt so I had to change plans. How do you like the – raw version? please comment.
I keep on practicing on my leather craft skills and I found a very good source for solid brass hardware for buckles and bolt snaps or the famous Tiger Thread or copper rivets. Seams look now more aligned than two weeks ago and techniques on cutting leather improved also a lot.
See images of belts, dog leads or some new IPhone5 covers I did lately.
Hardly you see a brand who manages to combine canvas, leather and solid brass hardware so well together – for sure a Japanese Brand. I hope they will be at the Bread & Butter January 2014 for a closer look. Thanks to Takao for pointing me to Superior Labor Website.
The idea to craft a dog collar for Tillmann with my mobile number on it was born be-cause he kept loosing the “id bombs” or making writings on the inside disappear caused by his rugged lifestyle. And the reason for an ID was also necessary by the fact that the call of nature and smells made him disappear from time to time. Once the “Jagdtrieb” / “hunting instincts” get hold of him it´s unlikely that he realize a command.
So within a very short period I was asked by friends to handmade at least half a dozen dog collars, with names on them and sometimes for the more active dogs with a phone number to call. Just make sure the dog collar does not outperform your own belt by quality and style.