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Leather Pouch Tutorial (RE: Owi-wan Kenobi, ROTS + others)

 
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SithariRog (Roger Allen)
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2013 7:27 pm    Post subject: Leather Pouch Tutorial (RE: Owi-wan Kenobi, ROTS + others) Reply with quote

Greetings to my fellow Jedi and Padawans!

I have recently completed an Obi-wan Kenobi leather pouch seen in Revenge of the Sith. I wanted to develop a tutorial to show you one way to make this prop. With a little creativity, other pouch designs can be made (including the companion pouch worn by Anakin Skywalker). I’ve decided to use a picture tutorial with captions explaining each picture. Here we go…

First, I got as many reference pictures as needed. The overall size I made is likely very close to the screen prop, but in this case, getting close is good enough. I played around with drawing a template, then ended up creating a final template using poster paper. In developing the template, I also made some wood forms for molding the leather. These will be used (and pictured) later. As you will see, this pouch, when finished will measure about 6.5” long by 3 3/8” wide. The template is 16.5” in length and 3 3/8” wide. The side pieces were 1” wide by 5.5” in length.


I then used the templates to cut out the leather pieces. This main pouch was cut from vegetable tanned leather from Tandy Leather Factory. The weight was probably 6-7 oz. I did thin it out some and it probably ended up being in the 4-5 oz thickness range. The side pieces (shown later) was cut from 2-3 oz vegetable tanned leather. This picture shows adding the decoration or groove around the edge.


Here’s the tool I used for the groove is called a Craft tool E-Z Adjust Stitching Grover:
http://www.tandyleatherfactory.com/en-usd/home/department/tools/8069-00.aspx
(It’s actually supposed to be used to cut a groove into which stitching is done.)

This is the tool I used to thin the leather from the back side. It’s called a Safety Beveler:
http://www.tandyleatherfactory.com/en-usd/home/department/tools/3001-00.aspx

Before continuing with the stain, I slicked the edges and smoothed the back of the leather. The slicking tool is also from Tandy. The smoother I used was a piece of pine that was rounded with a belt sander. Remember, when working with leather, you need to wet it. Tandy has a number of tutorials on “how to” work with leather. This picture shows the two tools (one purchased and the other made). If you look closely, the pouch on the right has had its edges slicked, whereas the pouch on the left has not.


Multi-Size Wood Slicker:
http://www.tandyleatherfactory.com/en-usd/home/department/tools/8121-00.aspx

Next, I’m showing all of the leather pieces and the magnetic closure. The leather pieces shown here have been stained once (I ended up putting two layers of stain on these to get the stain more even). The pieces are (1) the main pouch, (2) one flap that will be on the back and will use a snap to fix the pouch to the Jedi utility belt, (3) two side pieces and (4) one piece of leather that will be used for one side of the magnetic closure.


Here’s the Bag Clasp Magnetic Prong (Brass plated)
http://www.tandyleatherfactory.com/en-usd/search/searchresults/1299-00.aspx

Here’s the snaps that I used:
http://www.tandyleatherfactory.com/en-usd/search/searchresults/1263-03.aspx

And you’ll need a tool to set the snaps:
http://www.tandyleatherfactory.com/en-usd/search/searchresults/8058-00.aspx

Here’s the wood forms I was talking about earlier. Again, I made these along with the templates in order to get the right size. The one on the left is used for the main body of the pouch. The one on the right is for molding the side pieces:


This next picture shows the molds in action (and using rubber bands to help hold the leather in place). This is the finished leather (cut, groove placed, sides and backs smoothed and stained twice). The leather was wet and then wrapped around the molds. For the side pieces, the finished side is against the wood mold. This will make sense when you see the final product.


Here is the dried leather molded to the right shape:


Here is the side pieces fitted into place. Note the finished side that was against the wood mold is now facing outward and can be seen.


Next, the hardware that will end up being on the “inside” of the pouch needs placed. Otherwise, it will be extremely difficult to place this hardware after the pouches are assembled.

This picture shows the flap (with snap), used to hold the pouch on the Jedi utility belt, is sewed to the back of the pouch. I used heavy duty thread. The flap was sewed on with finished sides together, then the flap was folded over. The other side of the snap was then put in place to complete the snap system. I made holes in the leather for the stitching, snaps and for one side of the magnetic bag clasp closure. The thing to remember is: these parts go on before you begin to assemble the pouch. The actual placement should be intuitive.


Assembly!!!

The bulk of the pouch assembly uses glue (or a rubber cement). This picture shows a trick I developed for neatly placing the glue. A strip of tape was laid down. The adhesive was then placed where you see it pictured AND on the very edges of each of the side pieces (not pictured).


The glue I used is Tanner's Bond, Rubber Cement:
http://www.tandyleatherfactory.com/en-usd/home/department/leather-cement-glue/2525-01.aspx
Does it really hold? I made some Tusken bandoliers two years ago, used this cement and they'er still together after multiple troops.

After much trial and error (before actually using glue) I decided the best way to hold the pieces in place while the glue set would be to use tape. This picture shows the side pieces glued to the pouch and taped in place:


This is final picture #1. You can see very small stitches at the top (front and back, on both sides) to help secure the glued pieces. I did this for added security. These stitches do not show when the belt is being worn. This picture also shows how I assembled the other side of the magnetic bag clasp closure. I waited to do this until after the pouch was finished so that I would get it in the right place. Finally, I put a coat of brown leather (shoe) polish on the finished side of the pouch to give it a real nice shine and finished look.


This is final picture #2…all done and ready to put on my Jedi utility belt!



Okay, so how long did all of this take??? I made these pouches over a weekend where it was freaking cold and wet outside. On one day, I got the leather cut, finished and stained. It was allowed to dry overnight. The next day, I stained the leather the second time, and again allowed it to dry over night wrapped to the molds. The next day, I put on most of the hardware, and glued the side pieces in place. The glue was allowed to set overnight. On the last day, I stitched the tops of the pouches (as pictured). The stitching was done with a huge needle, a pair of pliers and lots of force. I finished by adding the “other” half of the magnetic bag clasp and put on a coat of leather polish. So…four days. Total cost of each pouch (not including tools)…probably something under $10-$15.

So…using this tutorial, you should be able to make any design of pouch that is similar to the Obi-wan Kenobi or Anakin leather pouches. If you have any questions, please let me know!

***UPDATE***

Using the same method, I created the Anakin Skywalker, The Clone Wars animated series, Season 3 leather pouch:


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Last edited by SithariRog (Roger Allen) on Sat Feb 02, 2013 1:48 am; edited 6 times in total
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Mihunai (Jermain Palmen)
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PostPosted: Wed Jan 02, 2013 8:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I always wondered how they made those near-threadless sides...
It's glued!

Thanks a bunch for this detailed tutorial.
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KrisAntilles (Amanda Burk)
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 3:41 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow, thank you for this!!! Another SithariRog tutorial that will probably come in very handy!
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RavenApprentice (Angel Martinez)
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PostPosted: Thu Jan 03, 2013 4:27 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow Amazing Work Roger! This tutorial will come handy to all
Jedi costumers! Great work!

May the Force be with you... Ben
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SithariRog (Roger Allen)
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 1:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I used the same method and made a pouch for Anakin Skywalker, The Clone Wars animated series, Season 3.

A pic was added at the end of the tutorial.

Enjoy!
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PostPosted: Sat Feb 02, 2013 12:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Great tutorial Roger, Thanks for sharing! Thumbs up
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PostPosted: Sat Sep 14, 2013 1:37 pm    Post subject: A tip for the gluing Reply with quote

Just a tip for using that glue (or most any rubber cement) with leather... For a permanent bond that doesn't require taping to hold it together while the glue dries, coat both surfaces to be joined with glue, let the glue dry until it becomes tacky, and then press the parts together. This creates an instant permanent bond, that quite frankly will pull the leather apart before it comes apart.

The catch is it grabs almost instantly so you need to be careful aligning the parts before letting them touch. A piece of wax paper between the parts can be used to keep them separated while lining them up, and slipped out to make the bond.

This is the technique I use almost exclusively to bond leather, due to the amazing strength the bond has.

HTH,
-Ted

Edited to add- This works best on the fuzzy side of the leather...when I need to bond to the smooth side, I rough up the smooth leather with sand paper and some scraping with the point of a utility knife before applying the glue.
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Furiafelina (Ineabelle Rodriguez)
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PostPosted: Fri Apr 04, 2014 6:14 pm    Post subject: Re: A tip for the gluing Reply with quote

zeroskillz wrote:
Just a tip for using that glue (or most any rubber cement) with leather... For a permanent bond that doesn't require taping to hold it together while the glue dries, coat both surfaces to be joined with glue, let the glue dry until it becomes tacky, and then press the parts together. This creates an instant permanent bond, that quite frankly will pull the leather apart before it comes apart.

The catch is it grabs almost instantly so you need to be careful aligning the parts before letting them touch. A piece of wax paper between the parts can be used to keep them separated while lining them up, and slipped out to make the bond.

This is the technique I use almost exclusively to bond leather, due to the amazing strength the bond has.

HTH,
-Ted

Edited to add- This works best on the fuzzy side of the leather...when I need to bond to the smooth side, I rough up the smooth leather with sand paper and some scraping with the point of a utility knife before applying the glue.



Like contact cement.
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