Working with leather is a rewarding hobby and an excellent way to better understand premium leather products. Whether you’re just getting started working with leather or looking for leather tools to complete your kit, here are seven must-have tools to create hand-crafted leather products. Find out where you can shop for the latest leather products to match your custom-made leather gear.
Your leather isn’t going to cut itself. The staple of any good leather toolkit is a cutting tool. Leather craft tools need to be long-lasting and durable enough to cut through thick leather. A starter option is a simple utility knife, but most experienced leather workers use a round cutter for an accurate and durable tool.
A utility knife provides you with a flexible tool to cut through leather and other products. Once the blade dulls, simply replace it with other utility blade. However, a round cutter is able to be sharpened, so you won’t have to purchase multiple blades. For an experienced leather worker, a round cutter will typically be more affordable as a long-term investment.
Be sure to keep your cutting tools sharp. A dull knife will bend and tear the leather, creating an uneven or unappealing cut. Creating custom leather products is all about accuracy, so a clean cut improves the overall quality of your final product.
If you’re used to working with textile and other craft supplies, you’re probably planning on forcing a needle straight through your leather. While leather stitching needles are larger and more durable than typical needles, they won’t create an accurate, unified hole on their own. Pick up a diamond chisel set to start your needles and create flawless holes.
A diamond chisel has one or more diamond-shaped ends. Place it on top of the leather in the correct position, then use your mallet to create a hole. After you’ve finished a line of diamond holes, you can thread your leather needle through to create a strong seam.
Diamond chisels aren’t the only hand tools that come in handy when working with leather. Pick up a set of hole punches to make belt holes or holes for rivets. Hardware on leather is not only practical, but also a great stylistic choice. Without the proper hole punch, you won’t have a clean edge around your hardware or belt hole.
Look for the right size of hole punch, or purchase a complete kit. Hole punches are designed for different types of hardware, so be sure you have one that’s compatible with your rivets or other items you wish to install in your leather.
To ensure your leather stitching has an even more professional finish, use an edge beveler in combination with your diamond chisel. An edge beveler creates a channel in your leather. Select an adjustable edge beveler to make an accurate bevel all the way across your leather produce. Once you have a beautifully beveled edge, you can use your diamond chisel or hole punch to finish the job.
Some edge bevelers have a pre-set distance, while most are adjustable. Look for an adjustable beveler to ensure you always have the bevel you want. Similar to an edge beveler, you may want to consider an edge burnisher. This simple piece device uses friction to melt the fibers and give your leather product a firm edge.
Another staple of your toolkit, a mallet is a go-to tool to keep all your holes, cuts and other tooling clean and error free. Select a durable mallet, as you’ll be using it for many of your leather projects. Strike your punches and chisels to create the force you need to cut, not tear, your leather. This is particularly important if you’re working with thick leather or multiple layers at a time.
A quality mallet has a plastic head and wood handle. A wood handle is a classic, sturdy option. It’s long lasting and easy to hold. A plastic head ensures your tools and leather supplies aren’t damaged as you strike them. It’s a softer head, so you won’t have to listen to the jarring clang of metal on metal.
While you might not immediately think of needles as tools for leather work, stitching needles are excellent for joining pieces of leather together or creating durable seams and edging to avoid fraying. These specialty needles have a large eye, so your waxed thread can fit properly.
Once you pre-punch your holes with a diamond chisel or other leather working tool, you’ll simply thread waxed thread through your leather. These rugged stitching needles make quick work of even the toughest leather, so you can create strong seams and intricate patterns.
Finally, the most important item for quality leather work is the leather itself. Carefully select your leather to find the best option for your particular project. If you’re just starting out, pick up a small piece of full-grain leather and create a small wallet or other accessory. Advanced leather workers can begin to work with larger items and a wider variety of leather types, colors and textures.Working with leather can be an immensely rewarding experience. If you’re looking for inspiration for your next project, or if you want to purchase a premium leather product to show off your new passion for leather working, shop for leather phone cases today. With some patience, practice and the right tools, you may be able to make custom cases and wallets that match these innovative designs and commitment to quality.
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