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Total matches for leather: 12
"I have loved the stars too fondly to be fearful of the night." - Sarah Williams
Kind of couldn't help but think of the quote while I was finishing this. I needed a little something different, again, and I'd been picking and different kinds of layered bracelets lately, so this happened. I really wanted something to showcase that "cheap plastic ring" which did not in any way look cheap to me. The blue highlights are so subtle that they're hard enough to pick out in person depending on the light, nevermind trying to get decent pictures of them, but I hope I've succeeded enough for folks to be able to adjust their monitors and marvel. Or something like it.
Finished commission for a materia bangle. Leather made to look like metal, lined with soft black suede. Took an insane amount of time, but that was partly the fault of work schedules and… well, partly my fault. I did suggest the “sword strike” and “wounded materia” and, well, you’d be surprised how long it takes to figure out how to make things look broken but still be exceptionally strong.
That was the idea: make it look like metal but be flexible, but let it be flexible while still being strong enough to last for years. Now, I knew a bit about leather working before this, but… I learned a lot. I broke a lot, destroyed a lot, and learned a lot. Then I got a dremel and things went so much faster.
I’m not gonna downplay it: I love this. I love how it tells a story. I love how you could find it on the ground somewhere and know that what you held in your hands was something beloved. And shiny as hell, let’s just cover that now.
Also. When a commissioner is as excited about a commission as you are, even the most painstaking process is fun. This whole experience, while absolutely work, was a blast, and I learned so much. There are already plans to make use of this knowledge, indeed; but this particular design belongs only to one.
Ewan's shy. Really he is. It's just that when he gets the opportunity to shine, he turns out to be a charisma bomb. He'll play just about any game quietly, but give him a chance at something action-y and he'll be making the kind of moves and commentary that'll have a whole room enamored and laughing. Well, if you can understand chocobo, that is.
To say that I "went a little overboard" may be an understatement. I think I rocketed straight to the sea floor only to rip through the molten heart of the planet and emerge on the other side. But, you know, shiny results! So beyond just spending however many days (over a week; I refuse to figure out more) making this poseable chocobo with wired legs, head, neck, wings and tail, I spent several weeks hand-sewing and hand-beading his blanket, headpiece, those two decorative "front flaps" (I r a artist I no wurds), all of the various bands for the saddle, then of course formed the saddle and panel armor from scrap leather, added several layers of iridescent gold pigment, and finished off with a little decorative gold chain with three lovely Swarovski crystals and a couple of tail pieces comprised of glass beads and gorgeously dyed jade. I feel as if I succeeded in... something.
A note on the leather panel armor: it's not so much the weight but the way the weight is carried that makes it necessary to adjust his legs so he's not going to go tumbling forward when the armor is on. The "tail pieces" are actually counter-weights to help alleviate that problem, but adjustment is still necessary. There's a whole bunch of stylish combinations to be achieved from all of these pieces, so of course Ewan's set to be a star in any situation.
Very soon he'll be on his way to join Desert Bus for Hope's lovely crowd of awesome goodies. More on that soon.
Lady Abigail (or just Abby to her friends) is still a little new at this. Oh, she knows how to march, knows every whistle and command, can walk in step or run ahead and around. It's the whole armor thing that she has yet to get used to. Her handler thought it might be a good idea to get her started with something custom-made, something unique and personal. Hey, even chocobos like to feel special.
I'd been thinking about making a fully-wired, completely poseable chocobo for some time now. I just hadn't actually given in to such insane ideas until now. The reception to my Desert Bus chocobos was just so good that I felt I should really push myself and rise to the ridiculously complicated challenge. But I'm glad I did! The result is lovely Abby with a wired beak, head and neck, legs, toes, wings (all of her primary feathers are also wired) and tail. And she has claws! I've been wanting to put claws on a chocobo for years!
And then, after all that, I decided she needed armor. (Because I'm kind of unsmart.) So... I went right for some scrap leather I've had for years and started cutting. Well that was a learning experience, but seeing as how the result makes me extremely happy, it was worth the work. Stylized forget-me-nots are the flowers that grace Abby's armor, and once I figured out how to firmly secure rhinestones to leather, I couldn't resist having some "flower buds" on her helmet/mask. Both pieces of armor attach easily with little handmade hook and eye findings and chain, and it's really easier than it looks.
She also needed that lovely blue velvet blanket. Yes, real silk velvet. Yes, it attracts light colored fuzzies like crazy, but it's SO SOFT and shimmery and yes.
And of course she's my chocobo, so she needed a touch of bling. I beaded her a couple of wired "anklets" and then decided her wings needed a little sparkle, so I made her some "wingbands" too. She seems to like them.
Abby's a big girl. In her "natural" pose, she stands 12 inches high to the very top of her crest. With her tail up, she's 6 inches from her chest to her tail, but with her tail extended out that measurement jumps to just over 10 inches. Fully extended, her wingspan is 15.5 inches. She can quite solidly support a Square-Enix action figure bareback, and can easily support the lighter ones with full armor on.
She's playful, sweet and loves her greens. But she won't turn down a slice of cheesecake. Just so you know.
An old, battered peacock cabochon I'd gotten years ago at a discount really needed a new life. Add leftover seed beads, some wire scraps, Swarovski crystals and a band of super-soft black leather I'd been playing with and... results! There's a little extra dusted gold detailing along the top and bottom, since... well, shiny.
I so needed to do something simple. Even if hand-sewing leather is full of cursing.
(Sold)Date: 20 October 2012
At last. I combined a beaded panel with a leather band and got a beaded cuff... while at the same time promoting my "little voice acting project", OrgLIX. It's either really sad or really brilliant but it took a really long time and a lot of work but I love it and I'm not selling it for it is mine. And I'm the only person I know with a wrist that skinny, so neener.
1,885 beads, by the way. That is how many were used to construct this single, tiny panel. I'm not sure I want to think about it much, either. But now I know what I'm capable of.
Alright, who didn't see this coming with my first real leather project? ...Okay, me, but it worked out somehow. Technically speaking, this is pretty awful. Learning by doing means making a lot of mistakes, and they're all here. That said... I managed to swing with it and turn it into something awesome, because mistakes are what lazy people call missed opportunities.
Yes, it's leather. Hand-tooled so that the crest rises slightly above the background, which the pictures... kind of do an okay job representing. (Pictures from the side all came out awful.) It is of course sparkly shiny gold, and rich semi-shiny green (the green extends to the back, as well). The ribbon is 100% silk and an earthy brown/dark bronze color. It's shaped so that it can fit just about any arm size, so no worries there. It's not recommended to be used as a wrist cuff, however, because that would require the leather to bend more, and that would more than likely crack the leather itself.
The combination of an unpracticed hand and a new blade can at least have a sparkly result. It belongs in the "definitely, without a doubt, handmade" category, but I can't say I'm in the least bit disappointed with it. This was an experiment all the way through, from how the pattern was transferred (mild failure; the lines weren't deep enough, and blind cutting with a new blade IS NOT FUN), to cut, to the blending of paint and pigment. I think it turned out quite amazingly for all that it's been through (a.k.a. me), and the fact that I found a very rich red silk ribbon was the perfect touch. In case you can't tell, both the red and the white portions have incredible iridescent sparkle that changes with the light source. I know, me and sparkly.
While this piece was made as a semi-bracer/to cover the back of the hand, it works perfectly as a bracelet for the larger-wristed (which is not me, with my scrawny little wrist) or an arm band for any size. There are many possibilities when it comes to how to lace it, as well.