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Yep, it’s the Speedo

Ok,come and get it, i mean, the Speedo rules. This isn’t the banana hammocky kind of Speedo either. this speedo is a kickass piece of leather craft: 

the Speedo sheath & tool is a one-of-a-kind custom sheath case partnered up with a brand new Leatherman (the best) Rebar tool (also the best of their offering).
2014-07-19 at 23-13-20
This sheath/case is made from the best, domestically made and sourced materials, by hand, by yours truly. the Speedo sheath & tool is a serious piece of utility and fashion, that sure as hell will stand the test of time.

I used a piece of 6oz veg tan in the front, and the back portion is made from 10oz -very substantial – and reasonably beefy – not overboard. Everything I make is lined,and this is no exception, its lined with mission grain pigskin, sewn with American sourced thread, on an American made sewing machine.

2014-07-19 at 23-15-09

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

This is a neat design that really keeps safe and holds your tool securely- and be assured will last a lifetime, if you don’t soak it in water repeatably or flog it mercilessly…. This sheath has a cool quarter snap, that I made= and is super duty – its just a serious piece of kit. – youll not see anything like it anywhere else… and if you do, please let me know!

The stamping is super textured up, really feels cool to the hand and will age wonderfully. The body of the sheath is a hand textured black and the “flap” is chocolate brown – very different.

2014-07-19 at 23-14-19

 

 

 

 

 

 

Hey gift givers – do you know a guy who likes leather (haha) a guy who likes having a tool on his belt? You know a guy who likes a bit of style and utility – then get it for him, this is for you.

The Fancy Pants 1″ dress belt

I am acknowledging my white collar roots here…

I will say with some degree of confidence – that finding decent belts for suits or dress “slacks” is darn near impossible. I mean, all of the shoe brands sell, what we’ sadly  consider “nice”, dress belts – but they are expensive, soulless pieces of foreign made shit. Check it out, many of the “good belts” have cardboard or fabric linings, laminated plastic edges… ick

So i thought i’d try my hand at making dress belts. I figured I’d make them, 1″ wide, perfect, the standard for the white collar, fancy pants wearing crowd. In time I will add a few different looks to this idea. Stay tuned. its a classy way for a guy who has to wear a suit, to show a little zippity badass hidden charm!

fancy pants 1

fancy pants 1

….for now, this is fancy Pants 1, get it by clicking on an image

2014-07-19 at 23-17-05

 

 

Its nice to be nice to the nice….

the world is full of dunderheads, avoid them...

The world is full of dunderheads, avoid them…

 

I love people.

I especially like crap talkers who take advantage of the privacy the interwebs allow (well not really, but read on).

But first let me share the foundation of this rant..

Not surprisingly, on occasion, I peek at Craigs List for leather working tools that folks are getting rid of. A lot of times, someone will find a box of stuff in their basement, post it on Craigs List, not knowing what they have. Sometimes, I’ll reach out and contact them to get the skinny on the deal, and sometimes wind up buying or finding homes for the tools. It all depends.

Because I am one of the very few “findable” leather craftsman on the East Coast, I’ve been called by folks asking me to find homes for stuff, and Ive had folks want to sell me stuff. More often that not, folks simply  want to get rid of the things and finding a good home for them makes them feel like they’ve put a dime in the karmic piggy bank. I am happy to oblige, because I love the craft and want more folks checking it out – and having access to tools is a start.

But, most of the time, what i find is junk, plain and simple. If things sit, especially in damp basements  - they rot and rust. About a year and a half ago I got a call from the widow of a saddle maker who asked me to come and clear out her husbands shop and find homes for the all the stuff.  As it turns out, most of the material and supplies were trash, I wound up taking to the dump for her. No money changed hands, and I wound up giving a lot of the tools away, as i didn’t need any of it (I am already well tooled up for my needs). I still have more of that stuff to offer to all of you, but it surprisingly takes time (a lot of it) to organize things like this and to give it away..ha!.. and I am time challenged….

So yesterday I see this ad on CL offering “leather work tools” – the lister boasts he’s got the Premiere selection…so I contacted them, letting them know that if they were of the mind to ditch the stuff, I’d help them out and find homes for the tools. Conversely I also shared that if they were looking to “cash out”, I wasn’t their guy.

This is what I wrote:

If your looking to cash out, I’m not the guy….. 

I am often called when someone has tools they don’t want, I find them good homes.

I don’t pay much, but I find tools homes that will use them, important only if you are a leather craftsman 

Regards

Steveb

So, this is what I get from the “seller”…..

I used to be a antique tool dealer and put stuff on eBay. I know exactly to the penny what they are worth which is around 4600.00. I know what I paid and I don’t know what cash out means but your a total bullshitter. I would vhave taken 2500.00 and you could have made a tidy profit. I know the deal, and you probably don’t have 2500.00. if I sold them to you cheap they would be on eBay in a day. I’m more of a tool guy than you will ever be.. go bullshit someone else

 loose my email Mr I find them good homes. What a bunch of crap. I’ve been a dealer over 20 years an never heard a dumber story in my life. I can tell ou the exact year of any woodworking tool and what its worth just from a photo. My god. I own a cabinet shop chump, I use more tools than you will ever see. You insulted me and tried to guilt me. I would love to meet you face to face so I can laugh in it.

Sent from Windows Mail

(figures, he’s a Windows user…haha)

Sadly, this is what happens when a “professional tool guy who knows what he’s got” meets up with a person (me) who has no interest in anything other than getting tools in the hands of folks that want to learn Leathercraft. Guys like this  are the people that wind up offering mediocre “vintage” Craftool stamps for $10 apiece on ebay to rookies, when the knowledgeable  crafter knows for the most part they’re worth less than half of that. When i first started out, I didn’t know squat, and learned the hard (and expensive way) and I had a few people like this character take advantage of me, until i learned better.

For the record, these days I support the finest toolmakers in the craft whose tools cost DEARLY. As my work has gotten better and my commitment to the craft has strengthened, I’ve made the hefty investment in quality tools.

As those who know me can attest, making money off of selling leather work tools is of no interest to me, its not my game, its not attractive to me, the reward is tiny for the effort expended, and I have more fun giving stuff away than selling it (and luckily, I can afford to).

Its pretty funny (sorta) when people flex their keyboards and get bold behind the cloak of anonymity.  Its also pretty telling when the hate and bitterness explode from them like a balloon losing air. Its also a reminder to all of us, that on the interwebs you simply never know whom you are talking to, so always be nice and respectful. Why? because you just might find yourself in that “oh so” awkward situation where you get to deliver, in person on the promise, (or is that a threat): “ I would love to meet you face to face so I can laugh in it.”.. Oh boy!

I didn’t bother responding to my new bud, the professional tool seller, because whats the point? Its not worth explaining, its not worth the hassle or stress. Some people are just haters, because thats what they do  - hate – and its not my job to fix ‘em. Thinking on it, I have a feeling he’s filled with pissed-offedness from the frustration of selling tools piece by piece…lol

With all of this said – I still do have leather craft  tools (stamps for the most part)  to give away and if you are starting your leather craft hobby and are looking for things to get you going on your way – let me know,

Leather crafters > If I have what you need, I am happy to send it your way, for the cost of postage…..
Conversely, If you have tools that need homes and don’t know where to go, give me a ring……

Peace out!

steveb

Kitty Bags

Kitty Bags…hmmm.. they are made from quality veg tan leather and pieces of elk- the same stuff I use in my other work..so they will last along time and can take one hell of a beating. I started making them to put wall warts, connector and cables in- to transport little things in my daypack or saddlebags. You can put odds and ends in them and wont lose ‘em.

What else can I say, they look good, will last and are handy as hell.

You can find details on Kitty Bags, as well as find this, and my other goods on ETSY… Thanks for looking!

Kitty Bags

Kitty Bags

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Perfecta Wallets

Perfecta Wallets are something you are not going to see anywhere but here. Perfecta Wallets have a shape that lets them sit perfectly in a pair of  jeans pants back pocket. They are made from thick Veg tan leather thats been dyed and decorated.. The shape is a riff of of my Fin wallets and the carving and stamping reflects a Polynesian influence, the art in large part comes from a friend Matt Kamaio.

The wallets have 4 pockets, enough to hold a ton of crap.

You can find details on my wallets, as well as find this, and my other goods on ETSY… Thanks for looking!

The Perfecta

The Perfecta

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The Perfecta Wallet, redux

Perfecta Wallets are something you are not going to see anywhere but here. Perfecta Wallets have a shape that lets them sit perfectly in a pair of  jeans pants back pocket. They are made from thick Veg tan leather thats been dyed and decorated.. The shape is a riff of of my Fin wallets and the carving and stamping reflects a Polynesian influence, the art in large part comes from a friend Matt Kamaio.

The wallets have 4 pockets, enough to hold a ton of crap.

You can find details on my wallets, as well as find this, and my other goods on ETSY… Thanks for looking!

Perfecta Wallet

Perfecta Wallet

DSC_9297 DSC_9301 DSC_9303 DSC_9311

 

 

The Reddy Thready belt

The Reddy Thready is a black belt with some killer stamping, made from heavyweight Veg tan leather with some great red stitching. .. and ready to go to a home…
It is fully lined with pigskin, stitched with poly thread (made in the USA) and ready to be cut to your length.
Its brass buckle exudes charm and will insure you are the object of affection no matter where you might venture…

You can find details on my belts as well as find this and my other goods on ETSY… Thanks for looking!

The Reddy Thready

The Reddy Thready

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The Hot Shop belt

The Hot Shop is a black belt made from heavyweight Veg tan leather with some great red stitching. .. and ready to go to a home…
It is fully lined with pigskin, stitched with poly thread (made in the USA) and ready to be cut to your length.
Its brass buckle exudes charm and will insure you are the object of affection no matter where you might venture…

You can find details on my belts (and learn why the belt is called the hot shop!) as well as find this and my other goods on ETSY… Thanks for looking!

The Hot SHop belt

The Hot SHop belt

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The Bossman belt

The Bossman is a black belt made from heavyweight Veg tan leather. .. and ready to go to a home…
It is fully lined with pigskin, stitched with poly thread (made in the USA) and ready to be cut to your length.
Its brass buckle exudes charm and will insure you are the object of affection no matter where you might venture…

You can find details on my belts as well as find this and my other goods on ETSY… Thanks for looking!

The Bossman

The Bossman

DSC_9452 DSC_9454 DSC_9460

Making people happy, is really what its about!

This is the kind of consistent feedback you want to get from your customers… Roger had called me once or twice over the past few years – wanted to see what I was doing, what the cost of different stuff was, etc. Always a nice guy, l i enjoyed talking with him. I hear from him a third time last year, and lo and behold,he was good to go and writes….

“” My belt was even more beautiful than I anticipated- certainly more sturdy than any belt I have ever owned. It is a pleasure to put it on. I receive many compliments and questions.

I will be ordering another belt in the near future. It took two years of kicking the tires, but I am totally happy. Roger”"

Rogers belt

Rogers belt

The Happy Scrapper – a super duper belt

The happy scrapper is a rocking brown belt made from heavyweight Veg tan leather. .. and ready to go to a home…
It is fully lined with pigskin, stitched with poly thread (made in the USA) and ready to be cut to your length.
Its brass buckle exudes charm and will insure you are the object of affection no matter where you might venture…

You can find details on my belts, as well as find this, and my other goods on ETSY… Thanks for looking!

DSC_9466 DSC_9477 DSC_9481

The Cheese Eater – a special wallet

The Cheese Eater is cool  - I named it in memory of a riding bud who passed on some years ago, his name was Mort, he rode his BMW like the wind, always accompanied by his pal “Quiet” and he called his group of friends “cheese eating rats”, yeah yeah, I know – but it was a term of endearment –  really it was!!  Ha!

I am only going to make a few of these chrome tan units.. I made the Cheese Eater using chrome tan leather sourced from the same place that Langlitz Leathers gets their goods. Chrome tan leather has some great characteristics, but for the most part – it doesn’t let me do my “thing” which is stamping. Chrome tan leather does not accept impressions….

This particular wallet is made from great, “leather jacket leather” Really..this is just cool, soft, tough and lovable!

The inside of the wallet is a new design, holding cards, papers and bills in a really convenient and unique manner.

You can find this and my other goods on ETSY… Thanks for looking!

The Cheese Eater

The Cheese Eater

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Customer feedback, good or bad, you’ve earned it….

This is the kind of feedback you want from your customers... It makes me think back to when i was just beginning to offer my work for sale, and the first time I got a note from a customer after a purchase.

I held my breath when I opened the email. I was really afraid that I’d disappointed my very first real, paying customer, a customer who i didn’t know, who was buying my work, sight unseen and on faith.  I wanted so desperately to please and was afraid I’d blown it. Any artist who makes the bold assertion that she/he doesn’t care if paying customers are happy, or like their work- is full of shit, quite frankly. There’s not an artist I know, working for a fee, who doesn’t want to please.

Well, back on that day of “customer reckoning” my concerns were unfounded, that bold person, was pleased as punch and has over the decade+ since, purchased 7 items from me. Its an honor to have folks who come back and vote with their wallets… a very meaningful vote, in these “tight” days.

Then I have Nanette, a new customer who bought from my ETSY store…

“”I was immediately drawn to this wallet because of its uniqueness. I really didn’t worry about the price because I knew this was an original piece and that my husband would love it!! And he does! What I appreciated about the service, is how quick and accommodating Steve showed towards my purchase. I indicated that this was a Valentine’s Day gift for my husband so not only did I get the order the very next day, but it was nicely wrapped ready to be presented. Although this was my first purchase it definitely won’t be my last! A forever customer. (Thanks Steve) Nanette”"

… thanks Nanette, I really appreciate the feedback – and even after more than 10 years at it, I am still honored that folks like my work, take the time to say nice things and most impressively,  come back for more purchases… thanks for the support folks – it makes all the difference….

steveb

The Uce, Poly Longbone Mens Chain Wallet

The Uce, Poly Longbone Mens Chain Wallet

The Bwana – a chrome tan wallet

The Bwana is much like the Saddler – but for some important details – so look closely…these brown units are the first in a series of wallets I made using chrome tan leather. This is not something I plan to do regularly. Chrome tan leather has some great characteristics, but for the most part – it doesn’t let me do my “thing” which is stamping. Chrome tan leather doe not accept impressions….

This particular wallet is made from a great, vintage piece of heavyweight leather that is particularly cool and full of character. The leather itself has a deep oil to it that keeps it supple, but with a firm hand,  and it has a really neat characteristic – it shows every little scratch and abrasion in a really unique manner, kind of like antique luggage – and will age beautifully.

I only was able to source a small piece of this great leather and so- when its gone, its gone. The inside of the wallet is a new design, holding cards, papers and bills in a really convenient and unique manner.

You can get the Bwana and see my other work at my ETSY store. Thanks for looking!

The Bwana

The Bwana

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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The UCE, a Poly LongBone Super Squire, finds a pocket to call home

I was so thrilled that the wallet came yesterday, nicely wrapped up I must add :-), that I couldn’t wait until Valentine’s day to give it to my husband. The excitement on his face was sooo priceless. He loves it!!!!
Thank you      Nanette

Its nice when a good unit finds a pocket to call home, it makes me feel warm and fuzzy. Its good to know that this piece of wearable, functional art will last a good long time in this mans pocket.

Chances are it will outlive many pockets, ones  that it’ll temporarily call home.

Thanks for the business Nanette, glad your man likes his wallet, its an honor to have it sit in his pocket, and I am sure it’ll make for a memorable Valentines day gift!   Now, please make sure he remembers to stuff it down into his pocket – aight!!!

nanettes husband with poly wallet

HOME!

The Uce, Poly Longbone Mens Chain Wallet

The Uce, Poly Longbone Mens Chain Wallet

The Uce, Poly Longbone Mens Chain Wallet

The Uce, Poly Longbone Mens Chain Wallet

The Uce, Poly Longbone Mens Chain Wallet

The Uce, Poly Longbone Mens Chain Wallet

The Uce, Poly Longbone Mens Chain Wallet

The Uce, Poly Longbone Mens Chain Wallet

The Uce, Poly Longbone Mens Chain Wallet

The Uce, Poly Longbone Mens Chain Wallet

Meet the Chiggy

The Chiggy is cool, so cool in fact that its not going to be a regular item on the steveb menu -I am only going to make a few..these black units are the first in a series of wallets I made using chrome tan leather sourced from the same place that Langlitz Leathers gets their goods. Chrome tan leather has some great characteristics, but for the most part – it doesn’t let me do my “thing” which is stamping. Chrome tan leather does not accept impressions….

This particular wallet is made from great, “leather jacket leather” Really..this is just cool, soft, tough and lovable!

The inside of the wallet is a new design, holding cards, papers and bills in a really convenient and unique manner.

dig the Chiggy

You can find this and my other goods on ETSY… Thanks for looking!

The Chiggy

The Chiggy

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Meet the Saddler – a chrome tan, limited edition wallet

The Saddler is the first in a series of wallets I made using chrome tan leather. This is not something I plan to do regularly. Chrome tan leather has some great characteristics, but for the most part – it doesn’t let me do my “thing” which is stamping. Chrome tan leather doe not accept impressions….

This particular wallet is made from a great, vintage piece of heavyweight leather that is particularly cool and full of character. The leather itself has a deep oil to it that keeps it supple, but with a firm hand,  and it has a really neat characteristic – it shows every little scratch and abrasion in a really unique manner, kind of like antique luggage – and will age beautifully.

I only was able to source a small piece of this great leather and so- when its gone, its gone. The inside of the wallet is a new design, holding cards, papers and bills in a really convenient and unique manner.

You can get the Saddler and see my other work at my ETSY store. Thanks for looking!

the Saddler

the Saddler

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The Barb Wire – chrome tan wallet

The Barb Wire is cool  - check the barb wire scar on the front, I mean, how badass is that – a wallet with a barb wire scar…ha!-

I am only going to make a few of these chrome tan units.. I made the Barb Wire using chrome tan leather sourced from the same place that Langlitz Leathers gets their goods. Chrome tan leather has some great characteristics, but for the most part – it doesn’t let me do my “thing” which is stamping. Chrome tan leather does not accept impressions….

This particular wallet is made from great, “leather jacket leather” Really..this is just cool, soft, tough and lovable!

The inside of the wallet is a new design, holding cards, papers and bills in a really convenient and unique manner.

You can find this and my other goods on ETSY… Thanks for looking!

The Barb Wire

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the Inner Secret Fin Wallet

Long gone into someones pocket, this is another fine specimen of the Fin.

Buy Fin Wallets here:

the Inner Secret Fin wallet

the Inner Secret Fin wallet

The “Digging Deep” Fin Wallet

If you like the Fin wallet, you have hi-style! The Fin is a great unique shape.

Look at Fin wallets that are in stock here:

the Digging Deep Fin wallet

the Digging Deep Fin wallet

The LongBone – a mens wallet

As always, you can get immediate gratification by ordering goods from my ETSY Store.

The Poly Fin – a mens chain wallet

The Poly Fin is a killer!

As always, you can get immediate gratification by ordering goods from my ETSY Store.

Fobs are handy

You can clip your keys or wallet chain to them.

Buy ‘em here:

fob

fob

The Poly Longbone Uce – sold!

The Uce is gone. It’s a mens wallet, that will serve Andy for many years to come!

As always, you can get immediate gratification by ordering goods from my ETSY Store.