It is excellent that Abbey England continues its annual tradition and grants two further awards for 2021! I do not know who the winners are yet but I'm certain that Abbey England's team will make a good choice. You will have an opportunity to read the winners' blogs about their experiences and adventures in the leather and saddlery industries. For me, writing this blog this year proved to be a very useful and restorative exercise. I will keep writing posts next year, but on my own website.
This month has been another hit for saddlers up and down the country. With many businesses having to work behind closed doors and unable to be deemed essential enough to be open for customers. Making business, making bespoke items, much trickier than normal relying on customers measurements and working designs through phone calls, sketches, and emailed photographs!
Last year I made a small batch of micro bags as Christmas tree decorations. This year I have decided to keep this tradition going and created micro Kensington satchels, a simplified mini version of my signature bags. I used off-cuts of the same leathers and suede as used for my real size bags production.
This time I want to share some information which might be useful for other leather makers and designers. Last week as part of the London Craft Week program, I visited Deptford Cockpitarts Studios. It is a memorable place for me. First of all, this is where I attended my first bag making course and realised it is to become my new profession. Then at some point last year I was invited for an interview with Cockpit Arts / Leathersellers' Award. It was a great opportunity. I was looking so much forward to it, but got so excited that mixed up the dates and failed to show up for the interview.
Relying on old and trusted things such as our houses and our favourite slippers is something very common, however, these things get worn. They need a bit of help and TLC, and this month has definitely been one for restoration. Going from a well-loved billiards box to replacing the webbing on a cartridge bag, the bursting seams of a briefcase, an endless amount of replaced straps, new handles, new chapes and even a chair or two to re-upholster.
We are on the hunt for two inspiring leatherworkers who will benefit from our scholarship scheme. So, if you are have saddlery or leather background, apply now for the opportunity of receiving £500 worth of workshop materials from Abbey England. Find out how you can apply here. Closing date for applications is Friday 27th November.
Before holidays, I managed to develop a series of my classes and tested it on a few lucky ones. In line with social distancing guidelines, the classes are one-to-one or one-to-two from one household. It is an exciting experience for me. The test runs have immediately demonstrated some deficiencies in allocated timing and complexity planning.
This month featured national leathercraft day (15th August) and online I saw many, people showcasing their best works, whether they are new to the hobby, training or a master of the trade already. It was lovely to see this handmade culture evolving and developing from so many walks of life.
We provide the highest quality leather in traditional colours (black and brown), as well as a wide range of non-traditional colours, including red, tan, blue, chestnut, stone, yellow, green and burgundy. We stock these in a wide range of types and thicknesses, from 1mm up to 5mm, to meet our customer’s saddle needs. Here we look at our top picks chosen by our in-house Expert Craig Evans.
he right type and amount of foam padding in the creation of the saddle will provide the perfect level of support and comfort for both the horse and rider. It provides stability and cushions impacts through shock absorption. Extra padding can also be used for horses with sensitive backs, or earlier injuries, and also for older riders or riders with knee, hip and back issues of their own. In our saddlery series part 3, we discuss our range of foams and their applications.