I know, I haven’t posted anything all week. I have been really under the weather and haven’t sewn a single stitch. I still didn’t have any energy to sew today so I thought I’d work on a belt for the owl buckle I bought on Etsy last month. I’ve been dying to wear it!
I went to Tandy Leather yesterday and picked up a couple of belt blanks. I buy the more expensive ones (about $11) that already have the snaps and are pre-skived in the buckle area. They come in one size only (I think it’s 44) and you just cut them to fit. This belt is 1.5″ wide which is what worked best with Hooty but it will not fit through the belt loops of all of my jeans so I’ll definitely need a 1.25″ as well. I couldn’t decide when I was at the shop so I bought one of each.
I don’t have a strap end punch (yet!) so I just drew a nice shape at the end and cut with a strong pair of scissors. Any irregularities can be smoothed out with an emery board.
Next, I marked the holes and punched them with a revolving leather punch. I know these holes look rather large but that is what I needed for this particular buckle. Punching the holes took every ounce of my strength because this leather is really thick!
The next step was dying the leather. I used plain old Fiebings leather dye in Chocolate, which turned out to be a lot darker than I really wanted but it’s pretty. I probably should have used the Medium Brown instead. I applied three coats of dye and then buffed off the excess with a soft cloth (an old t-shirt). I dyed the back as well but only used one coat.
Next, I finished the edges with Edge Kote in Brown. This isn’t necessary but I like the way it finishes off the edges.
Lastly, I applied a couple of coats of Tan Kote to seal everything. I was going to stitch around the edges but I am kind of liking the belt just the way it is so I’ll do that next time. My next belt is going to be USMC Black with brown stitching to go with a really cool buckle I bought on Ebay last week.
45 minutes later, Hooty is ready to wear! I think I’ll go back next Saturday and buy a few more belts to have on hand (and probably that end punch…). The snaps make them interchangeable so it would be really nice to have a few different colors on hand.