This year, I made a personal commitment to devote 2017 to learning and practicing a new skill.
This sprouted from a long-term frustration with my inability to make things. I can’t paint, cook, bake build, repair, or craft. I feel useless whenever there’s something broken in the house or if we need to nail a picture frame to the wall.
I soon discovered leather crafting, and fell in love with the process and the products born out of it.
A limited number of classes are currently taught here in the Philippines and Singapore. I wanted to sign up for a workshop, but I’d have to fly to Manila to and pay at least P3000 to register. This is a huge drawback as it meant spending additional money on airfare for this project.
While browsing Facebook, I discovered local stationery brand Sunday Paper Co’s post about a DIY leather crafting kit they’ve made in collaboration with Soul Flower Co.
It’s the perfect opportunity to dip my hands into the craft without flying over to Manila to get started. After spending some time gathering details about the kit, I purchased one for myself and had it shipped all the way to Cagayan de Oro.
Hammering the morning away
Sunday Paper’s leather crafting kit gives you the tools and materials to make two leather notebook covers. These fit almost any A6 notebook (e.g. Field Notes).
Inside are the following materials:
- A hammer
- 2 pieces of 15 x 20 cm black and beige genuine cowhide leather
- A silver pen for marking the leather
- 1 piece of 1m brown elastic cord
- 1 piece of 1m black elastic cord
- 1 piece of 0.5m medium-sized black elastic cord
- 1 hole puncher
- 2 slip notebooks and a Sunday Paper wooden pencil
- A template and instructions
Much of the crafting involves hammering and twisting the hole puncher through the leather. You’ll then insert the cords into the holes, which will hold the slip notebook in place.
I emailed Sunday Paper for a bit of help in between as I wasn’t sure I was doing it right. Fortunately, founder AJ Pangilinan was kind enough to answer all my questions and provide pictures of what the final product should actually look like.
Best for beginners
Overall, this kit is a good introduction to basic skills needed to turn leather into a usable and functional product. It’s also a great way to get started if you can’t find the time or finances to attend an actual workshop.
It doesn’t involve sewing or cutting the leather itself though, so those more experienced with leather may consider doing more advanced projects.
Here’s what the final product looks like:
At the heart of this project is making something for the first time in my life. It felt new and unfamiliar, which is a joy in and of itself.
I can’t wait for the next opportunity to craft again, whether that’s leather crafting or some other skill that’s just as fun to learn.