Instructions for making handmade leather goods: Basic operations

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The industry of making handicrafts from genuine leather is increasingly popular today. The community of people who are passionate about making genuine leather is also getting bigger and bigger. As a result, the need to learn, buy and sell, and exchange experiences about making items from genuine leather increases. Especially for those who are passionate about the meticulousness and simplicity in each handmade product.

Or simply want to learn and make a small item from leather for yourself as a gift or for your own use. So what knowledge does a person just starting out in the leather craft industry need to know? How to make handmade leather goods? In this article would like to share the most basic knowledge and operations on how to make handmade leather goods at home.

Instructions for making handmade leather goods: Things to prepare

Surely those who are new to the handmade leather industry are wondering where to start?
What type of leather to use?
What tools are needed?
How to make your own handmade leather item. So below, patternleatherfree will summarize the basic steps of “Instructions for making handmade leather goods” so that you can clearly visualize what you need to do.

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Step 1: Set up

The first thing that is always the most important is preparation. To make a handmade leather item, you first need to know clearly what item you are making? How complex is it? Prepare all necessary tools. And most importantly, it is the raw leather for crafting.

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A little note so you can make your own handmade leather item. It is meticulous perseverance, willingness to take apart and redo if there is a mistake. And be ready to shed blood because of accidents during the “action”. When your own work is completed, it will feel great.

Step 2: Trim the leather into details according to the design of the target product


Based on the design of the target product. You need to trim the details of the product completely and accurately to the design size.

In this step, you can use an emulsion pen to make an impression, measure and draw directly on a large piece of leather and cut out the details. Or use printed design patterns at a 1:1 scale and measure them directly on the leather for convenient trimming.

To avoid wasting time and money by cutting the wrong size and damaging the leather, you should use patterns to visualize the product before starting work.

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Step 3: Apply glue to the marked lines and glue the details in place

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Apply glue to the edge contours of the detail and stick it in place. Preparing for the next step is punching holes in the sewing thread.

Step 4: Fold the hem to make an impression and punch the sewing line

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Before punching holes in the seam, you should outline the details that need to be sewn to get a mark to have a nice straight seam. If you don’t have a heated edging machine, you can use a specialized compass to edging instead.

For those who are just starting to make handmade leather. The 3mm, 4mm filling chisel or round hole is the most common type of chisel. Moreover, the price of this chisel set is also quite cheap. If unfortunately there is an error or damage to the chisel set, it can be easily replaced.

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*Note: when chiseling, you should try to keep the chisel perpendicular to the plane of the leather. And remember to use a wooden hammer or rubber hammer to gently tap about 3-4 times so that the chisel teeth penetrate to the back of the part.

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Step 5: Stitch the details in place according to the pre-punched seams

To sew small details conveniently, you should prepare a leather clip. Has a clamping effect to hold the perforated leather details in place and is easier to sew by hand.

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And now comes the most important step. This is also the step that requires the most meticulousness and perseverance: Hand sewing.

To sew leather, you need to use a set of specialized hard sewing needles. Depending on the size of the sewing thread and the sewing hole, there are different sizes of sewing needles. The most specialized type of thread for sewing leather is wax thread.
For beginners, I recommend using 0.8mm flat wax thread. For sewing holes that are large and easy to pierce the needle as well as to limit thread tangles when sewing.

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When sewing, clamp the details to be sewn onto the wooden clamp as shown. Then use a thread with a length equal to 4 times the actual seam length. And sew the details together one by one until the final product is completed.

Step 6: Edge processing, finishing the product

After completing the product, the final step is edge processing. Use smooth paper to rub the edges of the product until it is smooth.

Then use edge sealer to apply to the smooth edges. Wait for the glue to dry and continue rubbing 1-2 more times.

Finally, apply gloss gum to the edges and use a wooden stick to rub the edge over and over again for about 3-5 minutes (it’s quite tiring, be patient).

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Above are the most basic steps to making handmade leather goods that shares with you. To improve skills and make more complex items, many other skills and tools are needed. But basically for newbies, would like to share this bit of information. Hope it will help those who are just starting their journey of passion for handmade leather goods.

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Some products that my customers have made without much experience in handmade leather goods, be confident and create your own handmade items, wish you success!

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