Thursday, December 20, 2007

Leather Craft Serenade


Working With Leather

This can be as simple & basic Or advanced & professional.

There are many books, booklets, pamphlets, reprints, even articles describing how to assemble a simple article cut from a basic design which is purchased as a kit from a supplier. There are even sets of instructions available on the internet.

This is fine for the person who just wants to enjoy making some simple article for themselves or a youngster wanting to make a present for their favourite Aunt.

Should however you wish to make something more complicated, earn an income, make a living at a Craft, become a Craftsman/Artisan, Make & design you own range of Quality Leathergoods, then the above brief explanations are not going to help you.

There used to be some advanced college courses available on the subject. The best of these was offered in the UK by Cordwainers College & students came from all over the World for the 2 year Leathergoods Craft Courses & took the City & Guilds Leather Goods examinations.

Sadly those excellent Craft Courses are now defunct due to lack of Government funding for the college & inability of UK students to obtain grants.

The contents of that course provided the entrants with skills comparable with the excellent Craftsmen employed (& taught) by 'Hermes' in France.

So what was on offer that is not available in the simple instructions readily available? Well how to make your own designs, Produce your own patterns, Cut economically from a skin or hide, estimate & cost the amount of leather used, how to hand sew with two needles & a diamond awl (as a professional leather worker or saddler does). using a 'Harness' Iron' Pare leather & make turnovers, Understand & make use of all construction methods, to name just a few of the more advanced techniques.

The old courses have gone but the skills & technology is now available in my Leather Instruction Manuals of which the first 3 are written & available from my site as e-books. There are however 4 more still to write.

So what makes me different & to be more precise capable of providing this high level of knowledge & skills. I worked in the top UK London Companies as a young man just after the war when the UK leathergoods industry was the best in the world, I made leathergoods for top London Stores, Royalty, Film Stars, Heads of State, Worked my way up from a Craftsman to Works Director. Finishing my career as HOD of the college mentioned earlier & was the City & Guilds Moderator for their 470 Leathergoods course.

To read more about all this & view fuller details of the contents of these manuals & the opportunity to acquire these never before published skills & techniques (Some of them were not even available on the college course), then visit my site.

While you are there take advantage of the free downloads also available & feel free to use the massive research & reference section of the site covering every aspect of this diverse subject.

You can find: Leather Suppliers, Museums, Other Leather Books, Leather Organisations, Manufacturers of Finished Leathergoods, Leather Shops Stores & Malls, Leather Importers & Exporters, & Much, Much More.

Treatment of leather is also dealt with & products are available to enable you to care for those expensive leather items you own as well as advice from experts in this field.

The History of Leathergoods is explored for those who are fascinated by past events. I hope this article & a visit to my site will prove useful & enlightening & I am happy to answer any genuine emails on this very ancient craft.

Francis Burdett-Mills MCIPD, Retired Master Designer Craftsman & Trainer,Leacturer, College H.O.D & City & Guilds Moderator for UK Leathergoods Courses, http://www.theleatherconnection.com, http://hidebound.blogspot.com.


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