Monthly Archives: February 2012

How does one start in leather craft anyway?

A stereotype perhaps, but the story of hide industrie begins like many others that involve men.

Hubris. Verbalised: “Okay, I could so make that. How hard could it be?”

I can’t remember the fateful item clad in leather that started me on this journey, but that’s how it started.

A few YouTube clips were viewed, and through the grainy badly edited 320×240 resolution, the mission was clear: To begin making my own leather goods. I became ever indignant of Italian leather houses that were plainly gouging us of our hard earned money.

When the fog arose, the reality was of course different. It took me a good year before I made *anything* that I was remotely satisfied with. When each hole for each stitch is hand pricked and punched, the chances of a misstep are pretty large, and naturally I gamely stepped into the abyss more than a few times. Early attempts featured stitches that were more than slightly uneven, or burnished badly or badly formed and thus functioned badly. A different course was clearly needed.

I ordered more tools, this time Japanese in origin, convinced that it was the lack of proper tools that held back my innate abilities.

It was a bit of that, but more so the dire lack of experience. (Ze Gods of Vuitton, I recant) Over time, things started to fall into place a bit more. Items started to have less of a ‘handmade in a shed without lighting’ sort of chic. I sold my first camera strap. Then another. People started to look me up to ask if I could ‘repair this belt’ Oh fuck off. A case was sold, more straps, a camera bag etc.

There are lots to learn still naturally. But it has been a great experience. Therapeutic mostly, murderous at others.


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A large Clutch

Size matters a lot to women it seems.

It needs to be large enough to fit everything, yet not so large as to make movement cumbersome.

The Clutch.

Handmade from a single piece of veg-tanned Buffalo hide, the Clutch holds a wallet, a cellphone, and various other ‘girlie’ things.

Okay, that’s a Rollei 35 S inside, which isn’t a ‘girlie’ thing. It’s a serious photographic tool damnit. But yes, you get the picture.

Available here.


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B wants a tote. B gets a tote.


This is the strap, mid-stitch.

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All about straps

So in addition to leather craft, we like cameras. A lot. And when the two meet, you end up with straps.

We make, and sell camera straps for almost any type of camera. From Mamiya RBs (a heavy beast that will over-deliver on your image expectations every_damn_time) to older cameras with ring-style strap lugs.

The one that is our current favourite?

Handcut from Veg-tanned Buffalo hide, right along the spine (leather is strongest when cut from head to tail, rather than across. I’ve confused you haven’t I?) and then hand burnished.

They look like this fitted.

These are 1/2″ thick, about 40″ long when attached to your camera.

Get them here.

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Mailman bag

We’ve always loved Mailman bags. Large, somewhat bulky, but when made with care, they will last pretty much forever.

This order came from a friend who wanted something he could tote about during the weekends. A father, he wanted something that could swallow the necessities of a weekend out with the kids, but not look like something out of Mothercare.

The leather is oil-tanned cow hide, with straps cut from veg-tanned Buffalo hide.

Handmade Jan 2012.

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