Monday, January 23, 2012

More on Tooled Leather Cuffs... and Tooled Leather Flowers.

I have owed my friend Shawna a cuff for  an embarrassingly long time.   

It's hard to make stuff for her because we get together and create art all the time... and she's so talented in her own accord, so I feel kind of silly making her stuff.  Hence the procrastination.

So I decide for Christmas (yes, I realize it's nearing the end of January) that I would make her a cuff.  I spent forever trying to decide what to put on the cuff.  I found all sorts of quotes about red-heads that were perfect for Shawna, but would have been weird on a cuff. 

For example:

"You'd find it easier to be bad than good if you had red hair," said Anne reproachfully. "People who haven't red hair don't know what trouble is." (From Anne of Green Gables)

 "When a fellow has a home and a dear, little, red-haired wife in it what more need he ask of life?" (This actually need to go on a cuff for Shawna's Husband...)

"I would always hesitate to recommend as a life's companion a young lady with quite such a vivid shade of red hair. Red hair, sir, in my opinion, is dangerous."

Ha!  If you know Shawna, you know the definition of a sassy red-head.

Love the quotes, but not quite right. 

I strongly considered stamping the bracelet with:

"Icarus was a moron-
Fly high."

But I hesitate.. the explanation could go both ways.  "Fly high regardless of danger?"   And then the quote also really didn't work with the design I had planned out...  and all that goodness and confusion so.... pass.

So I went with a good old standby..  Tried and true:

I wanted to try something a little different with this cuff, so I've incorporated two new techniques.

1. leather tooling by hand, as opposed to using stamps.
2. Applying sculpted leather flowers.

First I sketched my design onto the leather with a pencil, then to sculpt the leather I used a leather tooling swivel knife. 

I cut the flowers out using the same technique I always use. 

ie.  Cut a circle, draw "pie lines" on the back and then trim the petals using the pie lines as a guide.

I then used a moon shaped texture tool to add dimension to my flowers and a small circle tool to create the flower centers.  Once all the tooling was complete I molded the petals by hand and let the flowers dry.

In the meantime, I used flower punches to fill in the background on my design and the swivel tool to add additional detail and leaves where they were needed.

Next paint. 

Paint is the scariest part of making a cuff because color choices, application, and technique can completely make or break the finished product. 

Trust me...  I'd show you pictures of my first WonderCam cuff...  but I had to burn it.  It was that

 I went a little vintage 70's with Shawna's cuff.

Finished with dark umber brown (my absolute favorite brown)  diluted with water, and a coat of Mod Podge.  Oh, and I added blue rhinestone rivets to a couple of the flower centers.  <3

She loved it.
That, or shes a really good actress.

Makes me sooo happy...  Because the second most scary thing is actually giving someone something you've made for them and hoping you've nailed it.  


I love you!!

xoxo Cam


Lisa said...

It's beautiful Cam!

Shawna said...

I am nothing short of MADLY in love with this!! It is even more amazing in person!! I couldn't fake my reaction when you gave it to me, if nothing I held back so I wouldn't cry (don't tell anyone that part!) Amazing friend. Amazing bracelet. Amazing opinion of my talent. Love you Cam.
BTW this makes me forget what I got you for Christmas. (Both because whatever it was it pales in comparison and it has been so freakin looooong since Christmas)

sandi said...

Your talent is only exceeded by your beauty.

(that was an extremely deep comment at this hour of the morning with only one cup of coffee inside me.)


patrice said...

That looks like total love and trust to me!!! Wow you continually amaze me. I love that saying. I have it painted on a cabinet on the napping porch. ox

patrice said...

That looks like total love and trust to me!!! Wow you continually amaze me. I love that saying. I have it painted on a cabinet on the napping porch. ox

Alli said...

How much would you charge for a leather cuff? Thanks!

Elena Lai Etcheverry said...

you create such beauty!!! and you are such a beauty! love you1

AuBien said...

You can tell how much a person cares for someone by how difficult it is to find or make a gift to express their feelings for them. Your cuff turned out to be just perfect because it shows so much love. Awesome.