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Cut It Out!

Cut It Out!

Posted by Natalie Carroll on Jan 14th 2016

Do you have a good relationship with your round knife?   

A few days ago I was reminded why, in over 18 years of leather working,  I never really got into custom built tack (pre-hydraulic clicker that is) .  I spent well over an hour cutting out all of the prototype pieces to our new line of tack blanks (because we have to beta test designs of course).  I can't tell you how much over an hour because I'm TERRIBLE at logging my shop hours - a habit I really need to get better at.  

Anyhow, even with a freshly sharpened round knife and many years of practice, when you're cutting out smaller, more curvy pieces, it gets tedious at best.  That is precisely why I have decided to change my business model.. because I know what it is like to run a part time leather business on limited funds, time and space.  Not everyone can make a living with their leather work from the get go.  I never understood why there weren't high quality kits available for me to build premium products with a little more ease.  I guess most feel it is a rite of passage to be forced to work through the low quality kits and struggle to learn the best tools and leather for the job.  

I hope I can offer a glimmer of hope for those of you who aren't quite 'there' yet.  You don't have all the tools you want, or all the space you need, and maybe haven't mastered every skill you'd like to (I hate to be the bearer of bad news ....but you're likely to always want more!); BUT I've pledged to offer a better range of products and higher quality materials than most craft supply houses.  My goal is to source great designs as well as premium leather and hardware and bring it all to a place for the crafter or artisan who is short on time (or maybe knife skills ;)     

In NO way do I condone continuing to ignore that precious round knife you've tucked neatly away in a drawer somewhere.  They can be scary, intimidating things....I've been there.  For years my round knife sat neglected because I didn't know how to use it.  What was worse, I didn't know how to sharpen ANY knives well.... so I was working with the wrong knives AND they were dull :(      

I thought I had to use a certain brand of stone and nice buffing wheels (but I could never figure out which one) but then I found what works for me - you have to find what works for you.  

Follow along with me and I hope to help you find what works for you.  To find the resources and confidence you need to master the art of leather!  I don't claim to BE a master, but I know many ways to work toward it.  I think it is a lifelong learning process and I am enjoying the ride and I'd love for you to come along!