The Old Leather Works
A range of leather goods, hand made on the Isle of Harris, including belts, bags (incorporating Harris Tweed), and purses

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Bridle Leather Belts

Using what is one of the best English bridle leathers, in combination with high quality hand cast English brass buckles, our bridle leather belts are a thing of beauty, and will give many years of service. Baker's produce a bridle leather that retains much of the character of the original hide, so marks and shading from the cow's skin are still evident, making every belt completely unique. Using techniques that have been handed down by craftsmen over many centuries, they are completely hand made.

The strap is cut from a bridle butt, the point of the belt is then cut using a saddler's round knife, and a decorative 'crease' is applied along the edge of the belt. The next stage is to bevel the edges, using an edge shave, which gives a nice rounded edge. The edges may then be dyed to match the primary colour of the leather, and are then burnished by applying a vegetable based gum and rubbing to polish and harden the edge. This leads on to the final stage, where the strap is cut to length to suit the wearer's waist, a slot for the buckle tongue is punched using a crew punch, the stitch holes are marked and pierced with a diamond awl, before the buckle is saddle stitched on using waxed linen thread. The last thing is to punch the holes for the buckle, using an oval punch, and the belt is given a final polish.

Here is a video showing the making of one of my bridle leather belts.

Harris Tweed and Italian Leather Bags

The Old Leather Works is uniquely placed to make a range of bags, handmade on the west coast of the Isle of Harris, using Harris Tweed woven by the few independent weavers who live and work on the Isle of Harris, and Italian leather. I hand cut all of the Harris Tweed and leather components for my bags from rolls supplied by the weavers and leather merchants.

Collection of Mara bags, with turquoise herringbone tweed woven by Handmade by Heather, Drinishader, Isle of Harris, and black Italian leather.

Backpack with check tweed woven by Urgha Loom Shed, Urgha, Isle of Harris, and chestnut Italian leather.

Machair shoulder bag with green, single yarn, tweed woven by Taobh Tuath Tweeds, Northton, Isle of Harris, and chestnut Italian leather.

Cross body bag, with blue tweed woven by Urgha Loom Shed, Urgha, Isle of Harris, and royal blue Italian leather.

Custom bag, with green, single yarn, tweed woven by Taobh Tuath Tweeds, Northton, Isle of Harris, and chestnut Italian leather.

Traigh cross body bag, with yellow herringbone tweed woven by Luskentyre Tweed Company, Luskentyre, Isle of Harris, and marmalade Italian leather.