The first cut is the hardest

The parts of the bag

The parts of the bag

Last Saturday night, I’ve spent several hours figuring out what my actual leather craft project would be. I thought hard and I was too afraid I’d ruin the skin that I had earnestly searched for. It did not help that looking at the hide, its odd shape just made me shudder more to think that it came from a real animal. I had to give the leather some justice. I even had to cut a pattern from paper and assemble the parts just to see if they would work once stitched up. This is where my imagination should work vividly because I cannot afford to mess up. When I finally put the cutter on top of the leather, I was careful not to make a mistake. It was a lot harder than I had originally expected because I was too paranoid. It took me until Sunday noon to finish the cutting of the parts, and when I was already done, I knew I cannot start stitching because my hands were a bit shaky from all the nervous cutting.

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I can taste the leather

Yes, that is a “White Chicks” reference. After the fiasco from the store I visited yesterday, I finally got around dropping by the other leather supplies shop I have been keeping tab for a long time. I had a doctor’s appointment again and after it was confirmed that I still have a mild dextroscoliosis, I walked all the way to the store. I thought that I was already ready to work from scratch.

Yesterday, I had a little saddle stitch practice with a thrifted leather belt, and I eventually got the technique. Although I’ve read Al Stohlman’s instructions several times, I still accidentally pierce my thread while pulling the second needle. It usually happens when I haven’t waxed the thread enough, or I was just not paying close attention to how I pull the first thread. By-the-book instruction mentions I should redo the stitch when it happens, but being the stubborn person that I was, I just cut the fiber and I end up with jagged thread on some parts. Here is how it looked from the pre-pierced belt:

Saddle stitch practice on a leather belt

Saddle stitch practice on a leather belt

The back of the belt. It does not look that bad, non?

The back of the belt. It does not look that bad, non?

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Ready to learn saddle stitch

Marikina Clock Tower

Marikina Clock Tower

Not so long ago, I wrote about a project I wanted to embark upon. But who am I kidding? It happened more than two years ago as I even wrote about it after I finished with my comprehensive examinations. I worked from home today because I had a follow-up medical check-up with my doctor in Marikina. I thought that I might as well drop by the leather supplies stores again since I was already in the area.

(Sorry for the bad quality photos, as I have mistakenly left my digital camera in the apartment. I had also forgotten my HMO card and it was almost a disaster. Good thing I have my account number listed on my phone.)

Giant shoe automobile, shoe car Marikina City

That’s one big patent footwear — a shoe automobile!

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DIY Leather Coloring: Bag to black

Last Friday, I asked my sister to drop by this leather supplies store in Marikina Public Market to buy a leather dye. I had a DIY project in mind, but it was so simple that it would probably not take more than ten minutes of my life to finish it. Since receiving a Bayswater from more than two years, I have only used it less than five times. As much as I love Mulberry and this Bayswater, I just can’t bring myself to lug it around each time by the handles. I wanted a nice leather strap to convert it to a messenger bag and breathe new life to it and end its eternal damnation inside the storage bin.

I was previously using a strap from another bag, but the “canvasness” of it just felt so wrong. Mulberry does not sell separate straps unlike other brands (i.e. Louis Vuitton). And even if they do, we no longer have any Mulberrys here. Rustan’s used to carry it before and I remember looking at two Elkingtons and a nylon clipper. But look at me blabbering about all of these — if there were Mulberry stores here and even if they sell straps separately, I don’t even have enough money to spare to buy one. My point was completely moot to start with. >_< LOL

Bye bye brown - Mulberry strap

Bye bye brown

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