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Camp-Inspired Leather Crafts

Create irresistibly chic accessories with bits of tooling leather and colorful lanyards—those bright strips of plastic often used for camp crafts. If you're only planning to make one of the projects here, purchase a precut 8-1/2" x 11" piece of tooling leather; for multiple projects invest in an economy single leather shoulder. Both can easily be cut using a craft knife and our templates to make a mouse pad, card wallet, pen case, or sleeve for an iPad.
Martha Stewart Living, July 2012

Lanyards come out every summer, like mosquitoes and ice cream trucks. Those bright strips of plastic entertain kids through all those lazy day-camp afternoons but then, come September, seem to disappear into the junk drawer. These projects take their cues from these childhood camp crafts but are chic enough to become staples in your wardrobe. What gives these accessories staying power that your favorite 7-year-old's green-and-yellow tornado stitch lacks? The pairing of natural materials such as raw leather with irresistibly colorful lanyard accents. No wonder you’ll reach for them long after the last mosquito bite fades.

This leather comes in 8 1/2-by-11-inch sheets and four- to five-ounce shoulders, which can easily be cut using a craft knife and our templates to make a mouse pad, card wallet, pen case, or sleeve for an iPad.

Tools and Materials

Tooling leather
T pin
Craft knife
Leather punch
Plastic lacing
Glue, such as Magna-Tac

  1. Download template; cut out. Place template back on leather, and use T pin to prick where holes are indicated.
  2. Place pocketed layer on top, and make holes with punch, using holes in bottom piece as guide.
  3. Starting at a corner, lace through the holes with a whip stitch. Sandwich ends of lacing between the leather; secure with glue.

Templates

iPad Sleeve
Card Wallet

Mouse Pad

Pen Case

Tooling leather piece, 8 1/2" by 11", $13; Economy Single Leather Shoulder, 4-5 oz., $7 per square foot; and Deluxe rotary punch, $20, tandyleatherfactory.com.

Comments (1)

  • Pam Glover 26 Jun, 2012

    Just made the card wallet and guess what, no cards fit in it! Good job!!! Grrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr