[SCA-AE] About Sewing Leather

Gwilym scalongbow at windstream.net
Tue Jul 1 16:30:50 EDT 2008


Replys are from Andrew Hazen, affectionately know as Drew.
SCA member of BMDL.

(SHORT ANSWERS)
 
"Can you truly sew leather on a traditional machine
without destroying either item?"
short and sweet answer....
 
depending on the leather and machine....yes
 
"Isn't there a great method for sewing
trim flat on round collars?"
 
short and sweet answer....
 
yes...baste stitch it on first
 
"What's a good way to cartridge-pleat a lot
of fabric without going grey or mad first?"
 
Yes...can do it in a matter of minutes with three strings
====================================================
 
(LONG ANSWERS)
 
"Can you truly sew leather on a traditional machine
without destroying either item?"
 
Truly and totally depends on the sewing machine and leather used. Common 
since should tell you that you can not sew sole grade leather on a very 
cheap model sewing machine, so I really will not go into what happens if 
you do.
 
Leather that can be sewing on a household sewing machine:
 
Upholstery leather - 1oz to 3oz
Vegetable tanned leather - 1oz to 3oz (both light and heavy household 
sewing machines)
 
Any thinker will cause breakage in the plastic gears. If you have a 
heavy weight sewing machine then you can get away with 5 to 6 oz 
upholstery leather.
 
Now here is the key of sewing the leather one household sewing machines.
 
1.       Measure...remeasure...get ready to cut the leather then 
remeasure...lol
2.       Use rubber cement at seams to hold together that area before 
sewing it, then use "tacky glue" after you sewn area for the "extra" hold.
3.       Use a 3 sided leather needle. If you don't then you can't sew 
leather on a sewing machine and the regular needles will rip the leather up.
4.       Use a ceramic presser foot. If you don't the metal foot will 
discolour the leather and pull it out of shape till it rips from the 
friction.
5.       Sewing thread should be a "coat weight polestar thread" only.

1.       Sew slow and steady. You only have one shot. Once a hole is 
place in leather, its there. It will not go away...ever...even cussing 
at it will not make it go way.
 
 
"Isn't there a great method for sewing
trim flat on round collars?"
 
I find the baste stitch while holding your tounge at different angles 
works the best for me...
 
 
 
"What's a good way to cartridge-pleat a lot
of fabric without going grey or mad first?"
 
Yes...can do it in a matter of minutes with three strings...see web site 
or talk to Zianna...she taught me
 
http://www.elizabethancostume.net/cartpleat/
 
 
hope that helps
 
always
 
Drew
 

"The upcoming Tournaments Illuminated Quest Article is SCA-specific  Sewing Secrets with Guest Editor Celia Friedman | Maestra
 Annalena di  Corsini, who has years of experience both as a member of the Order of  the Laurel (Costuming), and as a professional costumer. If you have  discovered (or secretly been made privy to) wonderful sewing tips and  techniques, here is your opportunity to share them with the Known  World. To get you thinking, here are a couple of questions staff and  friends sent in:     Can you truly sew leather on a traditional machine  without destroying either item?     Isn't there a great method for sewing  trim flat on round collars? What's a good way to cartridge-pleat a lot  of fabric without going grey or mad first?    If you happen to have a stunning photograph (high resolution) of your  technique-in-progress, please let us know.  Send us an e-mail with your tip to tieditor at sca.org by  August 7, 2008, and it may be included in the Fourth Quarter Issue of  Tournaments Illuminated."    Teresa     
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