5 good books to read about leather work and braiding
There are not all to many new books on leather work that have been published lately. Actually I have found non. My main reference in learning how to deal with different things has been the net and youtube.com, but I felt it was not enough so I have been doing some research into what options you have regarding books and reading material for leather workers. I am willingly leaving out any special books about tolling as I am not there yet and feel that is an completely different area to enter and should only be entered after getting the hangs of other things first.
1. The First book to recommend is some times referred to as the bible of hand stitching or hand sewing leather. Its a book written like so many other books about leather work by Al Stohlman. A name you should be prepared to here often in regards of working with leather and how to techniques.
This book is called The art of Hand sewing leather and can be bought f.x through Amazon. This book gives you all the information you need for the basics of sewing techniques and if you only buy one book about leather work in your lifetime The art of Hand sewing leather should be it. Even though this book was first published in 1977 its still valuable as not much has changed neither in tools nor technique.
2. The second book about leather work deals mostly with braiding and is the holy bible of braiding. I highly doubt that you can learn and master every thing that is in the book so filled with information and how to’s is it and further more it has good pictures to explain the procedure of leather braiding. The Encyclopedia of Rawhide and Leather braiding is written by Bruce Grant and spans 528 pages of information. Like other books it is old, first printed in 1972 but in the braiding area not much has changed and there is lot to learn from this book both in terms of lacing and braiding.
3. The third book I recommend is written by Al Stohlman (who else) and is the first in 3 book series about boxes and cases its name is The art of Making leather cases and is filled with informations and how to’s about boxes and cases of different sizes. This is a good reference to have when you are starting out. You can get The art of Making leather cases at Amazon.
4th & 5. the forth and the fifth books are also by Al Stohlman. They are volume 2 and 3 of The art of making leather cases and boxes. If you want to learn all about bag handles, locks and zippers The art of making leather cases volume 2 is the book to get. But do not forget that with out the volume number 1 its only a half a book as there are lot of references to the first book. You can get The art of making leather cases volume 2 at Amazon
Volume three of The art of making leather cases deals with some quirky things like cellphone boxes the size of a mountain (or there about you feel) through briefcases and larger boxes over to guitar cases and golf bags. So mainly larger things and different solutions to problems when making bigger items. Like volume two The art of making leather cases volume 3 depends on having both volume 1 and volume 2 as it makes reference to both.
All three books of The art of making leather cases are recommended as having a place on your shelf of good leather working books.
6. (or maybe 5 ) Is Leatherworking Handbook: A Practical Illustrated Sourcebook of Techniques and Projects – by Valerie Michael
About the book it says. Valerie Michael-a founding member of the Association of Design Leatherworkers- has created the definitive guide to this popular and age-old craft. Oriented to the beginner, it thoroughly presents all the materials, tools, and key techniques in easy-to-follow photographs: finishing edges, paring and hand- stitching, making pockets, attaching studs and straps, and decorating surfaces. The well-chosen projects take into account developing skills, and range from belt and wallets to quilted items and bags. An invaluable reference work. Fine description and fine book
These are the references I have found so far. I hope I will find more books and do in fact fear the day I dive into tooling leather. Hope this help you in your quest for the right path with in leather working.
Keep on stitching