I have been on a quest to find the perfect leather to use with all the boho charms I have been collecting. I want a nice medium weight leather that is both soft and sturdy. The color should be rich, and the feel should be buttery. I recently decided that my only hope was to buy a hide and cut it myself.
So I have been scouring Southern California and found some scraps, as well as full hides.
At first I made the mistake of buying leather that was nice and soft, but too thin. But the heavier leather can look too much like a shoelace when it's cut.
I have been cutting it with a regular circular cutter and a self healing mat, which works surprisingly well.
I decided to make lemonade out of lemons, and use the soft thin leather to make tassels. I LOVE tassels. I have been scouring the internet nightly for cool tassels made out of anything: chain, pearls, leather, silver. So here is my attempt at making some out of the nice soft leather hide I bought at Save More Leather in Los Angeles.
The first one has a very nice sterling toggle clasp. The second one has piece of turquoise and an old African trade bead. I am going to attach them to necklaces made of hishi beads, wood beads, and leather.
Finally, here is a small sample of the vintage charms I have collected and turned into necklaces. The first one uses some of the leather I cut. The last picture is some pre-cut leather I just found that's actually pretty nice. Sigh.
Sunday, February 9, 2014
I believe this was washed for many hours in a Los Angeles wash house, and then silk screened. But it started out as someone's undershirt.
David and I have been learning about distressing jeans and have discovered that there are places that will wash things for hours and hours and will also dye them, which is a way of fast-forwarding the aging process on t-shirts and denim. Something about it is very appealing. I love the old tags in the neck, especially if they are from some old manufacturer from the 50s or 60s.
I also picked up this old sweatshirt at a flea market, that is now one of my favorites.
You can take new t-shirts and use sand paper and the sanitize setting on your washing machine, or you can search for a long time and find the perfectly aged and naturally-distressed item at a flea market or at a thrift store. I like them both.
The old style sweatshirts often had the raglan sleeves set in. I especially love hoodies, but pullovers are good, too.
I also love dyed garments. The colors come out so vividly. There's just something about a home-dyed garment that says it's special. The black one above was dyed in a wash house. I have some more things I will post that I have been dying , too.
Lastly, I have been collecting vintage t-shirts and have been experimenting with how to cut them to make them into tank tops. I am still working on the details, like how low to cut the arm holes, and whether or not to put darts in. So far each one has been different. I have some lace t-backs that I bought in downtown LA that I will try to add to the backs as well. This is a big project I will try to finish before summer.