As the adage goes, “Great things are done by a series of small things brought together”.
We often overlook the nuance of the techniques and processes involved in building a leather product. To appreciate the quality of handmade leather products, we must first understand the importance of stitching.
This youtube video will help you better understand the preparation of needles and waxed threads before creating a leather product. Nothing fancy, nothing over the top. The video entails just an experienced artisan demonstrating two basic hand stitching techniques. As you may have realised, hand-stitched leather products are some of the most sought after products. So you must aspire to build proficiency in the same.
This article takes you through a series of hand stitching leather techniques apart from the ones outlined in the video. The objective of putting together such a resource is that by the end of this article, you’ll be more appreciative of the little things that go behind creating a magisterial leather product, how the hands of the craftsman work in harmony with the needle, the waxed thread and the base leather.
Types Of Hand Stitching Leather Techniques
For centuries, we’ve indulged in leathercrafting using hand stitching techniques. The credits of the revolution of leather products go to the invention of the sewing machine and leather stitching tools. However, the excessive use of this mechanised process of stitching leather products has led to the creation of inferior quality products. These rarely present the superior finish of hand-stitched leather products.
Let’s take a look at some of these simple hand-stitching leather tips and techniques. A hand stitching leather tutorial –
It’s a basic stitch and requires fundamental leather stitching tools- a needle and some waxed thread – for execution. Leathercrafting enthusiasts say that it’s the first skill a beginner must master to mature as a leathercrafter. Only after this can they learn new leather stitching techniques by hand.
As the name suggests, the single stitch is a single knot through a particular hole to tie two leather pieces together. It also resembles saddle stitch to an extent, so it’s a good alternative for the same.
The saddle stitch is a traditional style of leather sewing that dates back centuries ago. This stitching technique is one of the most common techniques in leathercrafting. It may sound and look complicated, but it’s comparatively a straightforward stitching technique to learn.
Z stitch or a ‘zigzag stitch’ is another common hand stitching leather technique that demands more patience and concentration than a single stitching technique. This technique warrants a steadier and more durable leathercraft product than a single stitch. Manufacturing of stretchable material primarily uses this.
Fundamentally, it’s an extension of the saddle stitch. The only difference comes when the thread has to move to create a zigzag pattern.
The execution of this stitch is very similar to that of the Z stitch. The difference comes in the pattern. It’s a series of Xs that provides strength and stretchability to the material. Apart from leather products and byproducts, this stitch has applications in hand embroidery, creating beautiful patterns.
An extension to the saddle stitch is highly effective when you require a closer and more seamless stitch for your leather product. Considering its effectiveness and efficiency, you’ll find the box stitch used extensively in leather bags with sharp corners.
French Seam Stitch
If you require a hand-stitching technique that can ensure strength and connection between two pieces of leather, then a french seam stitch is your bet. Its efficiency is such that it’s used to manufacture car seats and other leather products that receive wear and tear.
For a step-by-step process of each stitch, click here.
Hand leather stitching techniques have their own merits, considering the needs of artisans. These leatherworking and leather crafting techniques are better for delicate fabrics as machine sewing will not create that snug finish characteristic of premium leather products.
CreateLab has leather resources and leather working tools to help you with all your leathercrafting needs. Be it making leather products or leather accessories, leather sampling, leather sourcing, or even consultation for your leather business. Do visit our website to know more.