Friday 4 November 2011

Leather Cases and Coverings

Leather has always been a material that I enjoy working with. Not having to worry about fraying or hems allows for a far greater range of detail. If the truth be known, I still haven't got my head around intricate work with woven fabrics!

The images above and below show a soft and thick buffalo leather book cover. The hand stitched edging was completed using a fine hemp twine and all intricate stitch work was done with a 100% cotton thread and with the aid of a sewing machine. I try to incorporate woven fabrics into leather products and chose a 100% hemp fabric as the background for the circular patches.

Cases for mobile phones and Sat Navs are fairly crude designs which need to simply protect devices and allow for easy removal. Both of the cases in the photo feature a cord which will eject the device when pulled. With Sat Navs it is not so much of an issue, but for a mobile phone it is important to get at it quickly!

The following pouch is fucntional, but has had a little more thought put into the choice of materials. It is a simple flap pouch that holds a set of bamboo crochet hooks.

Again, I have used a soft buffalo leather with Belgium flax used for the hand stitched edging. Half a betel nut has been carved, sanded and encased in the double layered flap.

I tried to use as many different materials as possible for the decoration without making its overall appearance too busy. The pouch's closure relies on a slice of Japanese deer antler for a toggle and a soft suede cord finished off with a bead (the seed of a soapnut) on each end.

I am trying to move away from the use of zips, velcro and poppers for any closures on bags and pouches. This currently leaves me with drawstrings, toggles and buttons. I am trying to develop other ideas for secure closures that allow for some adjustment. Taylor made pouches are fine with toggles or buttons that do not adjust, but bags need some form of adjustment as fixed positions rarely work for bags when both almost emtpy and completely stuffed! Below is a simple drawstring pouch crafted from various leathers and suedes and again finished off with soapnut seeds as beads.

Notepad covers are also fairly easy to make and are a great way of both protecting and improving the appearance of a simple spiral bound pad. One downside to these is being able to source new pads of the appropriate size when the existing one becomes full. Hand stitching on the pad's cover was done with a very strong wax coated rayon.