What tool do you use most often?

We all have favorite tools, that we’ll reach for when we have the chance, and sometimes over other options. Which one do you reach for?

For me, it’s likely, the ruler. It’s not a super one of the leather tools, though I find measuring often helps make the remainder of the work more fun and turn out well. So for now, that’s the one I’d say I use the most :slight_smile:

Hello everyone! :wave: I have though of this question over and over in my mind. My thoughts were to answer with no hesitation but, we use so many tools over and over during the course of a project. So my answer is several which is used in tandem and they are… Paper, pencil, colored markers and scissors. The reason I decided on these was… it is impossible, without question, to start my project without using these first. I create so many items in my mind and change so many projects over and over to create a new look with the same pattern. Case and point; pics. enclosed. I am changing from a stitched project, to copper rivets. Thanks for reading my post! :upside_down_face:
Bye for now :wave:

It’s funny how often the most basic of tools (paper, pencil, ruler (my mention above), etc.) are some of the most go-to. And, likely everyone has them.

I’d love it to be something unique and exciting, like a fancy brass strap cutter or powered skiving machine, though I’m right there with you! The basics are the classics :slight_smile:

Do you sketch your patterns by hand, or use a drawing program on the computer?

Hello Dan :wave: I’m glad I am not the only one that is old school (shows my age).:flushed: I am looking at drawing programs but I’m not computer smart. Do you use a drawing program? Right now I redraw by hand. If I buy a pattern it’s usually to make changes to them and make it my own. If your thinking about a drawing program, it would be nice to have a place on this site for an intro. and educational discussion to learn the process. I think this would add so interest and add to your classes. Thanks for the reply! Bye for now :wave:

Hey, I’m a fan of classic hand drawing too, though recently have tried computer tools to help speed up some of the revisions I make.

Mainly I’ll use a program called Adobe Illustrator - it’s a digital drawing and illustration program and can make quick work of thing. There are several others out there too, both free and with cost, that can do a similar job

That’s a great idea :+1:, I’ve added it to a list of content I’d like to produce. We can likely dive into some pattern making specific tools too as I’m sure we can borrow a bit from how the fasion industry relies on them

I’d imagine digital elements of the leather crafting process will only grow over time, especially with laser cutting and etching

Hi Dan! :wave: I have Adobe but, I a said, I’m not a computer guy and I can’t get it.

Hey :slight_smile: , ok, this might be a good area to dive into over time, thanks for the topic idea!

yes Dan! If you could set up a tutoring section. I would even pay! :+1: Bye for now. :wave:

Hey :wave:, great thought - I’ll consider that to over time as that approach can be an excellent way to help folks! Thanks

Hello Dan! :wave: Thanks for the consideration.

Absolutely, I like the idea a lot. I’d need to think through the common tools, figure out the best for most folks to use (cost (ideally free), access, platform (mac, pc) ease of use, etc.), and be able to recommend something that can be picked up relatively easily.

I’d imagine many folks could benefit from more digital tools in the leathercraft workflow, or moreso, “create-flow” :slight_smile:

I could absolutely benefit from some of those classes. I have Visio, but mainly use PowerPoint to make any digital patterns. Most of the patterns I use to cut leather, I draw by hand, but if I have any carving to do, I will sometimes draw it on the computer and trace onto the leather.

The tool that is probably in my hand the most is my maul. I hand stitch all items and us it with my leather stitching irons as well as for tooling / stamping leather. I have one of the Barry King mauls as well as a Tandy Yellow headed mallet. The maul is my goto unless I am looking for a lighter “smack”, then I use the mallet.

In God’s Grace,

Pastor Bob

“While we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” - Romans 5:8

I’ll have to give some deeper consideration to spending some time into this and seeing what can benefit folks. I’d imagine more and more digital tools will become some part to leather crafting.

I’ve had my eyes on a Barry King maul, maybe one day I’ll just go for it. Figure buy it once likely for life, and the cost will be worthwhile over time

Yes Bob! I agree :sweat_smile: I have cried many times buying the same tool over and over as I increases my skill and upscaling my tools. I have learned to cry once and get it over with. I just save up my money to save money. :flushed:

My most used tool: My brain. Without it, I wouldn’t know how to even start a project, design it, the steps to take to complete it, ways to get me out of trouble, and judge when it’s truly done. Other than that, everything else is kind of a tie. That’s what I love about my version of leatherwork; I don’t specialize in any one thing, so I use a lot of different tools, and I don’t get into a rut. I’m not a good freehand artist, so I’ll use Photoshop to copy, then modify, existing designs (including conversion to line art for tracing) and produce fonts for engraving. I also use it to show off my work.

Hello and welcome to the club. That’s an excellent choice for a tool! The brain is one which refines with time and experience and can be used in so many ways on so may projects.

And digital tools like Photoshop can be very helpful for expanding our skillset or allowing for exploration into new techniques. Laser engraving/cutting is one that is fun to try too.

Thanks for the great thoughts, the brain is a top pick :slight_smile:

And yet the time comes when we switch the brain off to let body memory do it’s bit. I’ve been studying the second wave of psychology, now the claptrap egotists have been mostly discredited, forcing psychiatry to present hard neurophysiological evidence. One of the things coming to the fore is that the cognitive brain is still less well formed than the limbic, animal brain, in the middle, and the basal ganglia, the lizard brain, at the top of the nervous system. The basal keeps us alive, the limbic, emotive, the cortex, consciousness (which relies on the mid-brain gyri, the lumps, to feed a neuroceptive perception to the limbic). Neuroception’s what makes the difference, we don’t just think, we know what we’re thinking.
Beauty comes from not thinking too much. Letting the rest of the brain emote.The meditative angle of reflective awareness of the spirit of what we’re making. Endless bevelling where the individual taps merge into one. Care with the brush. Balancing the stitching.

1 Like

Wow, there is so much great in those statements, on so many levels. Part of the draw of leather working, like other activities that are similar, is the ability to as you mention get into the meditative angle. After we learn and practice, the muscle memory almost takes control and we get to float though the creation of an object, with the satisfaction and fulfillment of having takes pieces and made them into a beautiful new whole.

I’m sure the psychology of leathercraft is an area that could be explored so much. even, possibly, the theraputic benefits too. Thanks for this positive and thought-provoking message :slight_smile:

Given neurotypical norms have adopted a throwaway culture, I wouldn’t be at all surprised to discover we’re mostly from one or other of the following groups:
Traditionalists (including opponents to throwaway)
Speciality needs no longer met, so diy
Neurodiverse - those like me who want something different, ahead of the game
Any others?

I’d agree those are the big categories. Maybe one additional who seek out specialized tools for many tasks. Where some folks prefer a handful of tools that can do most of the jobs, some folks prefer a unique tool for many individual tasks.

I think too, towards the middle of the 1900’s, materials were more scarce so keeping extras around and making one thing work for many was the norm. A creative midset for sure. Now, we might have an excess of options, though an abundance of material and opportunities to try new things.

An interesting thing indeed.