Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Suede Covers for DMT Sharpening Stones

One of the many skills that any leather worker will have to achieve is the ability to sharpen their cutting instruments. While some of these instruments are quick to sharpen, some can take a great deal of invested time to achieve a perfect edge.

The items used to create the perfect edge can be expensive and delicate. In this post, I will be presenting a simple project that anyone can make to protect your sharpening stones. In my case, my DMT Duo-Sharp steel sharpening plates.

Supplies used for this project:

Scarp piece of suede or other leather
Cutting Instrument
Stitching Chisel
Stitching thread & needles
Contact Cement or white glue

I select a corner of the leather and square up the corner. I then take two of my stones and lay one near the squared corner as shown. Depending on the thickness of your selection of leather will determine the spacing between the edge of the stone and edge of cut. In this project, I selected a 1/2" spacing to allow for gluing and stitching. This will become evident as we proceed with this project.

After I cut out two equal pieces which is needed for each stone, I use an item to mark out a radius at the top two corners of the pouch. You can use a radius template or a recycle can as I have to make these marks.

I then take my roller cutter and using the radius pen lines, I cut the two corners of the top piece trying to keep them as equal as possible. Repeat for the bottom piece.

As an added touch, I took a scrap piece of veg-tan leather and cut it to a 2"x 3" piece and rounded the corners. Using my alphabet steel stamps, I created labels to identify the stone in the pouch. The label will be affixed to pouch as shown.

I take one piece of the pouch body and the label identify the location where I will place it. I take my pen and make some small boundary marks on the pouch body of leather where the label will go. I take some contact cement and apply it to pouch body being careful to stay within the boundary marks. I also apply contact cement underneath the label.

Once the glue has become tacky, I join the pieces together being careful to stay within the boundary lines.

Using my stitching chisel, I create holes all around the label. I then take a selected amount of waxed thread and two blunt needles and sew the label down using my stitch mustang. Just as your stone will have a label marking the grit, your pouch will also have a label help you identify the stone inside.

Now, we lay the main pouch pieces flat on your surface making sure that you have selected how they will be joined. Take some while glue and apply a small bead around the perimeter of one of the pieces as shown. Once you have completed applying the glue, you can join both pieces together (carefully) making sure that you keep them pieces even all around. Take some things that can be used as weights and apply it to the perimeter of the pouch. I used a tool roll, bench weight, and my stones to do this step as shown.

After the white glue dries, I trim off any excess and/or make the perimeter even all around. I then take my stitching chisel and create my stitching holes around the perimeter of the pouch except the top where you have the rounded corners. The top is where the stones will be inserted and stored.

Once you sew up the perimeter of the pouch, you have created a nice and safe project to store the items that help you enjoy leathercraft!

Til next time...keep the grain side up!

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