PART2 KVC leather tote

This is a remnant piece of leather from a previous project.

It has a pebble grain unlike the smooth grain hide that I have specifically for the tote.

It will match because it is produced from the same tannery and has the same quality.

The contrast in grain adds some interest.

I’m going to use it to create the shoulder strap-keepers that will attach to the gussets.

The following steps I will show for these strap-keepers are the steps I will do for each piece that will make the tote.

I will cut a curve on each end of the keepers. I use a round template to mark the cut.

hook knife for cutting curves

I make the cuts freehand. I used to use the template as a guide but it would sometimes slip.

I found over time cutting freehand allows for more control.

The most important thing is to have a sharp/new blade.

The strap-keeper are trimmed out and ready to have holes punched.

After the holes are punched I will remove the grid paper.

The next step is to bevel the edges of both side of each piece.

This will round the edge and allow for burnishing of the edge.

the pieces are prepped and burnished.

A burnished edge is rubbed with water (one option) and polished till its smooth.

Burnishing takes a long time and the image only shows it partially done.

I used a natural based lotion to condition these pieces which doubled as a burnishing treatment.

The lotion is shea butter based and has no synthetic ingredients.

I’m not sure if I would recommend it as an instruction, but it works for me.

I will go back and do a thorough burnishing on this pieces before stitching.

The gusset pieces are trimmed out, edges hole punched and punched in the middle with an awl where the strap-keeper will be attached.

The strap keeper is slightly wider than the seam it will be stitched to.

This allows for flexibility of the gusset without being pinched by the strap-keeper.

Example of punching holes with an awl.

I use an awl (big strong needle attached to a handle) to punch any hole beyond

the reach of my round hole punch.

The placement of strap-keeper on the gussets.

punching holes with my round hole punch.

Most of the pieces trimmed out, hole punched, and edged beveled.

The remaining pieces left to trim out are for the handle strap attachments and closure buckle.

I am waiting for the hardware to arrive.

I will cut the pieces out for them after I get the exact hardware measurement.

I ordered a specific size item, but I wait till I have the item in hand to make a cut.

The way that I have created the rim that holds the hardware keepers allow for adjustment.