Tuesday, August 20, 2013

I May Not Be a Cobbler...

  ...but a shoemaking class was just the ticket I needed to learn a whole new style for jewelry making. Earlier this year, I had a wonderful opportunity to attend a leather workshop held at the Chicago School of Shoemaking. http://www.chicagoschoolofshoemaking.com     

I'd been wanting to incorporate more leather into my designs and thought this would be the perfect opportunity. Not only to learn more about leather working techniques and skills, but to approach it from a different angle- other than from a jewelers point of view. Master Cobbler, Sara McIntosh, runs the school and workshops from her quaint lower level stone studio in downtown Chicago. Her space is beautifully organized with all its hammers and awls, punches and stamps. It was floor to ceiling eye candy!

For the workshop project, I decided to try my hand at making a purse. It actually turned out far better than I imagined it would. My favorite element was using the raw edge of the lightweight leather as a fold over opening... just a touch of "rustic". Maybe my purse turned out so well due to beginners luck.... but then again, I'd rather give the credit to the very talented and patient instructor we had.

So here I sit tinkering around and smiling at the new addition in the corner of my studio. Armed with a whole new arsenal of leather crafting tools and knowledge, I dive right in. Some ideas have worked... and some not so much. But this past week I went through my box of metal widgets and wonders and pulled out an old pocket watch backing. Having always been fascinated by pocket watches with all their tiny gears, pinions and wheels, I wanted to add it to my new leather cuff I was creating. So here's a peek at one of my first pieces to marry leather and metal together. Now I just need to come up with a name for this "time" series... mmmm.... what do you think?

"Time to imagine"
"Time stands still"
"The right time"