Here are some examples of the diverse, attractive and practical work that students have made on our courses:
Essential Skills Course
Belts from Day One – everyone makes a belt to learn the essential 14 skills necessary for becoming a leather worker, from strap cutting to saddlery stitching.
Individual projects from Day Two – Students design and create their own pattern which they turn into a beautiful and functional product using the transferable skills from day one. They include things like bags, pouches, laptop holders, wallets and sheath.
In-a-Day Satchel Course
Each student may use the same pattern, but their choices of leather in terms of colour and grain, as well as thread, fixtures and fittings, ensure that every bag has a special aesthetic, making each satchel a unique expression of creativity.
In-a-Day Wallet Course
Much like the Satchel course, it is the combination of elements that students select that gives each wallet an individual touch. Where it differs from the satchel course is in the use of much finer thread and thinner leather.
In-a-Day Sheath Course
The sheaths that students create are determined by the knife or axe head that the sheath will preserve. This means that each piece is entirely bespoke, and amongst the skills learnt is the ability to match the form and beauty of the sheath to the function of protecting a specific object.
Leather Art and Craft
At Leather School we like to look outwards to be inspired and in touch with the things that other people are doing with leather art and craft around the world.
In September 2018 Leather School was honoured to be visited by Hajime Niwa, a Japanese master leather craftsman from Kashiwa, just outside Tokyo. Our tutors, including Berian and Will, took time away from their leather production work at Tanner Bates and learnt some new ways of working from Hajime. As well as trying different techniques we were impressed by the different tools that Hajime had brought with him. He told us that he uses ten identical knives that he spends up to an hour sharpening; he then uses each one until it starts to get blunt, moving onto the next until eventually he sharpens them all again. The edge burnishing that Hajime produces adds to the exquisite beauty of his leather work, and this has influenced how we go about our edging at Leather School. We were also delighted to find out that he runs small ongoing classes in leather making at the weekends – Leather School in Japan!