Thursday, October 4, 2012

A Perfect Pair


Stunning silver jewelry and a rugged leather belt make a wonderful, handcrafted, pair.  These photos are courtesy Jo of I Dream I Can Fly.  She’s a talented silversmith – my favorites are her cast animal pieces with their abstracted forms.  The bird was one of her first, and I actually gave one to my mom a few years back.  It’s such a satisfyingly simple bird shape – chubby and sweet, just reminiscent enough of a bird that you know what it is. 

Jo always gets wonderful photos, and more than a few have included my belts!  The belt she is wearing in this shoot is the Nelly Belt, a western-inspired pattern that I’ve put my own style on.  This was actually where the (slight) obsession with cow skulls and wild roses came from, and they’ve made their way into quite a few patterns since.

Hope you enjoy these! And now, back to answering email…



Monday, October 1, 2012

Hotel Key Case

One of my fascinations is decorating my house with leather in unusual places.  I don’t always have the brain power to switch modes and work with another medium, so anything I need done around the house is usually done in leather, when possible.

A few months back I found this fabulous hotel key case at Second Use – a local salvage yard.  I’ve gotten some great things there and totally stalked their website when I was looking for pieces for the studio (more on this to come).  When this piece popped up I had to have it – we have so many keys I don’t even know what to do with them.  The idea of hanging them in a refurbished antique turned art object was irresistible.  So, for $75 (yeah, I probably could have built it for less, but then it wouldn’t have been antique!) I got this:

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I loved the old hooks and the scrawled numbers, but the fabric backing was in terrible shape.  I unscrewed all of the little hooks, then cut myself a sheet of leather the size of the back, and got to work.  I measured and pre-punched the holes for the hooks (I cut down the number since I don’t have 100+ keys – I think I was left with about 48 holes)


This is one of the larger pieces I’ve done recently, so it was a bit of an adventure.  It’s bigger than my workspace so I was often working sideways, trying to get everything branded and painted.

When the leather was done I painted the outside of the cabinet and added a little caulk to keep the glass in.  Then I glued the leather to the back, re-inserted all the little hooks, and made a set of key chains for all the keys I have (see – there are a lot!!).  Here’s the finished piece:



So, what do you think?  (And yes, I’ll post more photos when I figure out how to hang it on the wall!)