I've got the leather bug, no doubt about it! City Boy has been diligently scanning the sales on ebay and craigslist in search of tools he thinks I may need, and one day we even made a trip down to Tandy Leather in Seattle to see what they had.
To see what they had? Oh, my! I was like a kid in a candy shop! Tandy Candy, that's what it ought to be called. Stamps and knives and conchos, not to mention leather. Leather, leather, glorious leather. And not just cow's hide. Oh, no, they also had kangaroo and alligator, too!
But on this particular day, I was only after a handful of conchos and a good 'shoulder' off a cow.
First order of business, mouse pads. I'd seen one online and just had to have one of my own! The first one was very simple; a stamped border with Tika's name on the bottom. But it wasn't enough to satisfy the creative side of me. I wanted more! So I pulled up a photo of a wild mare and her filly, printed it, traced it onto my leather, and off I went on an adventure!
I got a few mousepads down, then started seeing other things online that looked interesting. Tables, for one. Leather table tops? Hey...why not? So I ran down to the thrift store and found a little round table and hauled it home. Then I cut out a circle of leather and went to work. Again, I used Lupe and Lucky Charm, but this time did a border of flowers along with a dragon fly and humming bird. As of tonight, it's been oiled, polished and glued to the table top thanks to a little help from the Cowboy.
Speaking of the Cowboy, he had an old saddle he'd built 10 years ago land in his lap a few weeks ago. It was one he'd built for a customer, but they'd not used it much and it'd spent the past decade as a living room ornament of sorts. When it showed up in the barn, I was ordered to take it for a spin. Being that it was a 17" seat, there was a bit more room than I needed, so the Cowboy went to work.
He lifted the leather off the seat and began adding layers to the front, creating a 'rise'. While this didn't really change the size of the seat, it did change how it felt when I sat in it. So after a bit of cutting and gluing and sanding, the saddle began to take on a new shape that better suited me. It was then oiled and polished up, and is now ready to go!
Now I've got another plan. I want a saddle custom made for me. Not a cutting saddle...one to hit the trails with. And I want to tool it with wild ponies...wild, glorious ponies running across cantles and fenders and saddle skirts! Ah, yes...tis my new illness, to be sure!