|Time required||Complexity||Tools & Supplies|
Common for leathercraft
I was recently tasked by a friend to make a leather aloe vera incense holder as well as another incense burner more suited to burning cones. I wanted to stay on the same nature-inspired theme and to use this opportunity to try my hand at making flowers with leather, something I had seen in a craft market a few weeks earlier. I really enjoyed the result that is this white lotus flower and it motivated me to experiment further with those flower-like leather candle holders and this leather incense cone burner made to look like a succulent. Finally keeping in line with the theme of nature but if you’re more into cactus than flowers then you should check out this set of cactus coasters.
Printing and cutting the pattern
The PDF for the pattern can be found here.
Print it on A4 paper 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 test box on the pattern to ensure that its sides are 5cm long.
Print on thick paper to make it easier to trace the shape on the leather. 200g/cm2 and above is ideal (as long as your printer can handle it)
Tracing the outline of the pattern onto the leather
Use an awl to trace around the 3 petal patterns on your piece of leather.
Don’t forget to mark the position of the stitches.
Dying the petals (optional)
If you want to dye your pieces, this would be the right time to do so.
I chose to go with a very light touch of white. I wanted to keep the natural color of the veg tanned leather visible especially as it will age quite nicely.
Cutting-out the petal-crowns
Cut the outline of each petals on the three pieces.
I usually like to cut all the edges going in one direction, then cutting consecutively all the opposite edges.
Burnishing the edges and smoothing out the rough side
Here I use some Tokonole to burnish the edges and give a sleek texture to the rough side.
Stitching the three petal-crowns together
Start by perforating the leather with your awl to prepare for the stitches.
Then stitch all around the circle with a saddle stitch, passing through the three crowns every time.
Water-forming the flower
Submerge the flower in water and let it soak for a good 10 minutes.
Then close down the petals one crown after another, starting by the smallest one in the center.
Use a piece of thread or cord to secure the flower thus closed. No need to wrap it around too tight, if you do the edges of the petals might leave undesired marks on the opposite petals they are pressed on.
Let it dry overnight or until it has partially dried up but is still damp enough to be reshaped. At that point open up the petals to give the flower a shape to your liking.
Then let it completely dry (about 24h depending the heat and humidity).
Finally I am applying some leather finishing product with a brush in order to protect the pigment of the dye.
I hope you had fun making this project. I plan on adding another crown to make the flower look a bit more interesting so I’ll post the updated pattern once I get to doing it.
The following online content provided some assistance and/or inspiration during the making of this project: