There are many ways designs can be put on leather. Most factory made designs are embossed on leather. A design is pressed into the leather by machine. Designs can also be burned into leather. This darkens and etches a design. My designs are hand stamped. Each impression is hammered into damp leather. Hand stamped designs make deeper impressions. Embossed designs will fade out over time, stamped designs won’t.
The designs I create are hand stamped. Tools with different designs are hammered into the leather in geometric patterns to create my designs. Some of my design stamps are shown above.
I use wing dividers ( top right) to scribe a center line and to mark reference points where the design repeats. All designs are different, but usually that first impression stamped becomes the reference point to stamp the next design. The design builds from there. Whether I am creating a stamped design for a belt, guitar strap or a book cover, I begin by scribing a line and then I mark center and other reference points. I pick up a tool and I begin stamping. I build the design as I go. Once the design repeats I can mark reference points. All my designs are symmetrical.
After the design is complete, color is added. This is done randomly, so even if I repeat the same design the coloring will be totally different. Stay tuned for a future blog where I will explain my painting and coloring techniques.
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