Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Custom Leather Gratification

Here's another example of a project I may not have posted at all because it was so simple, but I like how it turned out. Not so much with the pictures because the colors are all wrong, but the theme of this post is instant gratification, so I'm not going to fuss with it. (The leather is a nice warm greige and the stitching is bright orange. For the record.)

Recently, a coworker gave me a 15 gallon bag full of leather scraps. These "scraps" ranged from credit card size to almost a half-hide, so I was thrilled to get 'em, even though I'd never really worked with leather before. I've wanted to, I just... didn't really know how. Or what.

This past Saturday, I was loading up my pockets on my way to check out some architectural salvage (does anyone have a pedestal sink they want to move?). For some reason, this time, it made me a little nervous to stuff my iPhone in my jacket pocket with my wallet, even though I'd done it a hundred times before. (Wait, have I even had the thing a hundred days yet? I don't think I have. License!) So I decided to look around real quick for something to use as a case. If all else failed, I figured I could whip up a small pouch out of some spare quilter's cotton, or whatever was around. What happened to be most around was that bag of scrap leather, sitting under my cutting table.

I'm pretty sure it was the first piece I pulled out which happened to be a long rectangle, just a little wider than the iPhone and about 2.5 times as long. I slapped it on the table, laid the phone down and wondered, okay now what? Stitch up those edges, okay, I suppose that would be fine, just kinda seems like a waste... If I could just get the leather to kinda... mould to the phone. That would be way cooler. I tucked the leather around it a little and gave a thought about whether I'd have to get the leather wet for it to shape that way, although it seemed to be perfect as long as I was holding it. Maybe that was the answer. If I could hold it in place...

I brought it over to the mechanostitcher which was already threaded with bright orange (why?), installed one of the leather needles I just happened to have on hand and snapped on the zipper foot. Holding the edges with the iPhone still wrapped, I straight-stitched tightly up one side and then the other. Then I trimmed the edges where the bottom layer was now extending beyond the top layer. I was going to trim it all the way up the flap, but then I looked at those punched holes -- which were already in the rectangular scrap -- and thought the trimmed edges could actually come in handy.

So, five minutes from concept to completion, and back into the pocket. I didn't find a sink, but at least I have a custom leather case now. And I know Nigel can handle it.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Web Statistics