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Common for leathercraft

Step into the world of feline-inspired leathercraft as we introduce our latest tutorial on creating a charming cat bag charm.

This tutorial is part of our series of cat-themed projects, following the success of our previous tutorials on making a cat face coin purse and a cat catchall tray. In this tutorial, we’ll guide you through the process of crafting a delightful bag charm that captures the essence of our beloved feline friends.

With attention to detail and high-quality leather materials, you’ll create a whimsical accessory that adds a touch of feline charm to your bags. So grab your leatherworking tools, prepare your choice of premium leather, and let’s embark on this creative journey filled with cat-inspired craftsmanship!




  • 1mm stitching prong
  • 5mm, 2mm hole punches
  • Scissors or X-Acto knife
  • Applicator for the dye
  • 2 leather stitching needles
  • Hammer or mallet
  • Edge slicker
  • Cotton rag

Bill of Materials

  • 2/3 oz veg tanned calfskin + two little pieces of black and white leather scrap for the eyes
  • 1 key-ring
  • Leather dyes
  • Leather finishing product
  • Oil
  • Leather glue
  • Thread
  • Beeswax
  • Polyester stuffing


The pattern PDF & Vector files are available for purchase on etsy.


Printing and cutting the pattern

You can get the pattern here if you haven’t already.

Print it on US letter or A4 paper depending on the version you downloaded and cut-out the pieces of the project.

Make sure that the pattern is not resized by checking your print settings. You can check if it was printed properly by measuring the reference found at the bottom of each page.

Keep the assembly diagram to help you position the pieces later on during the stitching process.

Print on card-stock paper to make it easier to trace the shape on the leather.

Tracing the outline of the pattern onto the leather

Using an awl, trace the outline of the pattern pieces onto the leather.

Some pieces like the cheeks (I), the ears (J, K), the front paws (E) and hind-legs (F) have to be traced twice as one side is a mirrored version of the other. For those, turn the pattern element over to mirror the piece the second time you trace it.

The motifs of the belly H1 and H2 might seem identical but since the head of the cat is slightly tilted towards the right side they end up being ever so slightly asymmetrical.

    Checklist of all the pieces to trace:

    • A x1
    • B x1
    • C x1
    • D x1
    • E x1 regular and x1 mirrored (pattern turned over)
    • F x1 regular and x1 mirrored
    • G x1
    • H1 x1
    • H2 x1
    • I x1 regular and x1 mirrored
    • J x1 regular and x1 mirrored
    • K x1 regular and x1 mirrored
    • L x1
    • M x1

Punching the stitching holes

Use stitching prongs or a hole punch to punch the stitching holes for all the pieces using the marks that you left earlier as a guide to position them.

You’ll also need to punch two holes for the eyes on the face.

Cutting-out the pieces of the project

Using a pair of scissors or an X-Acto knife, cut-out all the pieces of the project.

Dyeing the leather

Dyeing can be achieved through different methods. I will refer you to this Youtube Playlist in order to learn more about the subject from much more qualified craftsmen than I am.

For this project I used yellow and orange, and a mix of white and yellow for the ears and the nose.

Once the leather is completely dry, apply a coat of oil to re-hydrate it and protect the dye.


Try to be swift in your motions once the oil is on the leather to avoid creating darker spots. If this happens not to worry though, just leave it half an hour under the sun (rough side up so that the top grain doesn’t tan). The heat will help the oil spread out evenly in the fibers of the leather.

Making the eyes and gluing them to the face

Punch in two dots in a piece of black leather scraps with a 5mm hole punch. Punch a 2mm hole within each one of those black dots.

Punch in two dots in a piece of white leather scraps with a 2mm hole punch.

Insert both white dots in each hole of the black pieces and secure them by applying glue to the back.

Insert the two eyes into each eye socket of the face A and apply some pressure with your mallet or else to level the eyes with the surrounding piece of leather.

Secure by applying glue to the back of each piece. Wait until the glue is dry before proceeding to the next step.

Gluing the pieces together

Glue all the overlapping pieces together:

  • for the ears: J on K.
  • for the head: I and L on B.
  • for the body: H1 and H2 on C.

Stitching the snout

Stitch the mouth with black thread.

Stitch the nose to the face.

Setting-up the whiskers

To set-up the whiskers, knot the end of 6 pieces of thread.

Insert each thread in the relevant holes punched earlier on the face.

Secure them by applying some glue at the back.

Stitching it all together

Make use of the Assembly Diagram to help you position the pieces correctly.

Start by stitching the head (B) to the belly (C).

Progress along the neck. When you reach the last stitch of the neck, add the back of the body (D).

Continue stitching along the edge. Add the left ear (J) between the head and the back body (D) after reaching the cheek (I).

Then add the key-ring tab (M) and the right ear (J).

Don’t forget to add stuffing inside the head and body of the cat as you progress.

Stitch-in the tail (G) and the right hind-leg (F) between the belly (C) and the back body (D).

Stitch both paws (E) on top of the belly (C).

Finally stitch-in the left hind-leg (F) and finish stitching the cat’s belly.

Finishing touches

Apply the conditioning product of your choice on your creation and rub vigorously with a cotton rag to polish it and give it a nice shine.

I use a leather balm that I make by gently melting together “au bain-marie” 1 part beeswax and 6 parts olive oil. It’s great for nourishing and waterproofing.

Final result

I hope you enjoyed following along this tutorial. Please consider posting a photo of your creation in the comments below. It would mean a lot to me to see my little projects out into the world as you make it your own.

Any feedback/question about this tutorial or project idea that you’d like to see posted here is and always will be more than welcome.

Happy crafting!


The following online content provided some assistance and/or inspiration during the making of this project:

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