Leather weather

It’s been a while since I last surfaced from the physical world of leather to open a virtual window at Devon Leather and shared my current projects with you. I have a good excuse. Possibly.

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After a flurry of sales, I have been focusing on researching, designing and trialing prototypes, and choosing to undertake an occasional commission. Also, I have to admit, the lure of an unusually extended period of fine weather here in the UK has tempted me away from the workshop now and again. I feel like I’ve soaked up sunshine and light, storing it away for the dark cold days of winter ahead, and it will carry me through those winter afternoons when I will be perched on the high stool stitching, in pools of light from two lamps as darkness falls.

As I write this now, we are having the warmest autumn day since records began; the trees have turned and leaves are now falling, meaning that I need to sweep up outside the workshop door every couple of days or so. I also have harvested the squashes from the vegetable patch, and they are sitting, drying out and glowing in sunshine on the windowsill, where I can see them as I stitch, too precious to carve into Halloween lanterns.

Squashes and tools

When I initially had a vague idea of starting a business in leather work, I set to on the nuts and bolts of the business side of it- I found a name, designed a logo, got a very clever friend to set up my website, acquired lots of lovely vintage tools and materials, thought about how I was going to make sales and started developing my range of products. So far so good. My online market stall, on Etsy, seems to bring me plenty of sales- it’s open 24/7, in all weathers, and I can carry on working at the same time. Or not. And there-in lies the blessing and challenge. It is a privilege that I feel few are afforded, perhaps due to a culturally-entrenched earn/spend treadmill, that we often don’t have the time to pause, and decide which activity is best suited to the weather and our inclinations. Here, however, I have a myriad of choices, I can put on my wellies and either go for a long walk along the river fields, or weed the veg patch, or seeing dark clouds gathering over the tannery roofs, turn back to the planning and stitching. It may be an idiosyncratic way to run a business, but perhaps it is a more natural way to live.Key case

So here I am, 18 months or so since my first post. I’m not working to order, or in an orderly fashion, but I am having fun, making whatever I fancy next and seeing if it will sell. Perhaps I will become a conventional business one day, (I can see several of you shaking heads in despair) but for now I just see where the next stitch takes me, and maybe this afternoon I will go and walk in the sunshine for an hour.

Belt up! How to get your size right

 Ordering a belt can be a confusing affair as your belt size is not the same as your waist measurement. Read on for the best way to choose a belt that will fit! Take your existing belt and measure the length from the turn of the leather at the buckle end to the hole mostContinue Reading

Loopy

With several belts made and just waiting for loops, it was time to crack on and get some made. Now all that’s left to do is cutting the belts to length and punching the holes.  It’s a fiddly job and has usually been the bit about making belts that I’ve enjoyed the least, but afterContinue Reading

The Wild South-West of England

Being a peaceful sort, it felt a little strange to be making a cartridge belt, but I have seen it as something of a challenge.  Made with English oak bark bridle leather. With hand stitched open loops, each stitched individually with waxed linen thread, this bespoke belt recycles the customer’s own buckle and accommodates 12Continue Reading

The Mother of Invention

It’s been a wee while since I last posted news from Devon Leather HQ, partly because there’s been so much to do, but also (ok, mostly) because I had temporarily mislaid the website login details. (Thankfully located, after a week of frantic searching, in a ‘safe’ place). Anyway, as I recently had a wedding invitation,Continue Reading

Off to California!

No, not me- but one of these fellas, our Velo Vintage Tool Roll is, as we speak, (assisted by the wonders of modern aviation), winging it’s way across to USA. Now, if they could just send some of their warm sunshine back….  Continue Reading

Vintage style Tool Roll

Cycle in style with our hand stitched leather tool roll. Our design has been developed in partnership with the rather lovely chaps at Velo Vintage, and with traditionally tanned  full grain English leather, each tool roll is individually numbered, has all the natural marks and imperfections of real leather, and is truly unique. Attached toContinue Reading

We’re Live!

Hello and a big warm welcome to Devon Leather! We’re very excited to have our shiny new website up and running, and products also now on sale on our Etsy page- our very own virtual market stall- please follow the link and check out what’s currently available. You can also get updates of what we’reContinue Reading