Leather Crafting ¶
By: GreenandPleasantLand on Nov. 3, 2020, 6:33 p.m.
Leather Crafting is something that looks very easy to get into and the possibilities for creating beautiful and useful things are vast. It also doesn’t take a lot of space to do either, unless you’re working with half a cow’s hide!
I have been doing some research based on the above leather crafting video, and here is the list of leather tools that are recommended for people just starting and a rough price list:
- Stitching Diamond Chisel Set: Around £10 on amazon/ebay
- Leather Stitching Needles: £2 - £5 per pack
- Wax Thread: £3 - £6
- Self Healing Cutting Mat: Around £10
- Leatherworking Poly Mallet (heavier the better, around 1-1.5Lbs): £10 - £50
- Cork Backed Steel Ruler: Around £5 for 12"/30cm
- Craft Knife: £3 - £5
- Sand Paper (80 - 120 grit, 400 grit)
- Beeswax Block: Around £4
I think that the total cost of all the tools above will be somewhere around £60.
The above tool list can be expanded in order to complete various projects. Here some other important tools:
- Wing Dividers: Around £5 - £26
- Japanese Skiver Knife: £15
- Leather Glue: £7 - £65
- Brushes/Paddle (for applying glue)
- Edge Bevellers: £11 each, or £14 - £42 (for sets)
- Slicker: £5 - £10
- Scratch/Marking Awl: £3.50 - £6
- Bone Folder: £3 - £8
- Stitching Pony: £10 - £35
All of the prices listed for the tools are to give you an idea of the prices to expect when getting started so like most tools, you can spend a lot more money for better quality tools.
Here are 4 UK companies which I have found to buy tools and leather from:
The leather itself is the most expensive part of leather crafting and there’s too much information to cover on this overview, for example, tanning type, type of cuts, grain type etc. According to the YouTube channel Corter Leather, buying off cuts of vegetable tan (veg tan) leather is the best idea so that you can practice the basic techniques before you try a project, as you can very quickly waste a lot of money buying leather. These off cuts vary in price based on the amount of leather (in weight) but can cost around £10 for 500g (https://www.pittards.com/shop/multi-coloured-bovine-leather-bundle) or £35 for 3Kg (https://www.identityleathercraft.com/index.php/soft-firm-calf-pieces-3kilo.html). One way to get scrap leather to practice on is to get it from old leather furniture which would have gone to the dumppit anyway. So keep an eye out for opportunities to get it!
Here is a list of YouTube videos which are great for learning about leather:
- NEVER BUY LEATHER BEFORE WATCHING THIS VIDEO 1 | WHICH PART OF HIDE?
- Getting started in LEATHERCRAFT - Choosing Leather
- Chrome Tanned vs. Vegetable Tanned Leather, Explained