leather craft tutorial 1 – basic tools

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The most frequently asked questions about leather craft, “what tools should I buy?” Oh well, here you are the very very basic tools for beginner.

  • Paper cutter, to cut thin to medium leather
  • Angled knife, to cut leather. It is not very recommended to beginner, quite a challenge to handle it, esp when you cut with fear, it hurts you or damage the leather easily. (actually this one is not the formal angled knife, just my dad made me, quite good to trim excessive leather edge)
  • Glue, stick leather together before punching and stitching
  • Scissor, generally we don’t use scissor to cut leather, but for some very thin and soft leather like lamb skin, scissor does better than cutter
  • Binder clip, to hold the leather after applying glue, in order not to leave marks on leather, clip should be leather lined, actually just insert a small piece of leather in between
  • Sandpaper (200/400/600/1000 grit), to refine leather edge
  • Diamond stitching chisel (3/4mm, 2/4 prongs), to punch stitching holes, if you like making small leather goods, go for 3mm width; if you want to make handbags, 4mm is better
  • Holes punch, to punch holes for bags strap, belt, etc
  • Leather marking pen & mark cleaning pen, to leave removable marks on leather for pattern cutting, hole punching etc. Actually the marks can be rubbed off easily, but sometimes you have to remove them by cleaning pen
  • Wood slicker, to burnish leather edge
  • Thread & two needles
  • Poundo board, to absorb noise and protect your table while punching holes
  • Mallet
  • Non-skid ruler

All these tools can be bought from leather shops in Shum Shui Po, HANDS art & craft limited in Wan Chai, online store like Taobao. One thing that is soooooo important, for those knife, chisel, hole punch that needs to be very sharp, buy branded products from Japan (Craft, Elle, etc) or US, don’t buy those low cost tools from China. From my experience, those China tools are very weak, can’t even punch holes out from leather.

Next time I will bring you to Shum Shui Po to give  you general idea of the leather shop :)

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