Bone Ostrich

Wingtips and countertips for a future project. Wish me luck–so far I have successfully avoided doing a boot with a White or Bone foot.

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Side seamed and ready to last

I have a pair of boots side-seamed and ready to go on the last. I always choose the last before I cut paper, much less leather, but typically I fit the last immediately too. I’m a little behind on that schedule and I’m fitting the last today. Fortunately my Krentler Bros. combination lasts are easy to fit and usually don’t require too much work.

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Process

I’m through with all the pattern pieces for “The Little Prince” boot tops and getting ready to put them away. I thought you might enjoy a glimpse of the way I create a pattern, as well as the sweet little cut-out princes that are a by-product of the process.

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Tiny bit of progress

After an entire week of computer work, I made it back into my studio at 4:40 on Friday and got to work on these tops for a few minutes. As always, I am not pleased with the way they look before they’re stitched and I implore you to reserve judgement until they are. Oh, and the trunk of the baobab tree won’t be added until the boots are being put together so the tree looks weird right now.

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New shoes

I finally decided to wear my new shoes. They’re comfortable, they feel like cowboy boots, and no one else in the whole world has a pair like them. 

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Faces and expressions

One of the most difficult things to do in leather inlay/overlay is faces and achieving a suitable expression is particularly challenging, especially in the smaller ranges. This little prince has a long way to go before he’s done but I’m very pleased with him so far.

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Challenges of rough-out

The Little Prince boot tops are rough-out–that’s the back side of the leather. The back side of this blue wasn’t as clean and unblemished as I might have wished (one tends to choose leather by the grain side) but I played with placement until I’d either eliminated or covered all the irregularities on both tops. Now I move on to cutting out the design. It can be difficult to see your cutting lines on rough-out because the powder can get lost in the fuzz so I’ve traced around the design with my heat-erasable marker to make it more visible.

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Paper patterns

I enjoy making patterns so much–it is peace and meditation for me. This one was particularly fun and I actually chortled doing the Baobab tree. It’s going to disguise the back seam perfectly. That little tangle of hands and crane harness is going to be tough and I have a feeling it will require some on-the-fly adjustments to the pieces. I was so excited and happy with the beginnings of this piece that I forgot to create patterns for the planet and the sunset, but the sunset won’t really be recognizable as a sunset until it gets some colors anyway.

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Love/hate

I’m making progress on the Peyote flower boots. This is a tough design to stitch and I hate it all the way through, but it’s so elegant and beautiful that as soon as it’s stitched I love it again.

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The importance of planning

If you need me, I plan to be staring blankly into space for the next few days as I plot how to create this design in leather.

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