Belts

Apparently belts are not as easy to make as you might think.

I don’t plan on making lots of belts but as my older brother wanted one I decided to make one for him.

Rather than order leather first I decided to start with buckles I quickly learned that no matter who they came from I would want to finish them myself. I don’t like casting marks even where they will not be seen.

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I bought two brass cast buckles the original on the left the finished one on the right. I removed all of the casting marks and opened up the indent for the prong of the buckle to sit in. I also gave it a polish. I showed them to my brother who told me he would prefer a satin rather than a polished finish.

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The satin is on the left.

I started off with veg tanned leather which I planned on dying to the desired colour.

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Using my English strap end cutter I cut the end (yes I know ) but someone might have asked.

The next step was to thin the last few inches of the belt to allow the end to be folded so the buckle could be fitted.

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The required colour for this project is light tan. Dying leather is not easy lighter colours are even more difficult.

Light tan is like this.

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This is tan

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I decided not to proceed with either of the two first attempts and ordered some prefinished leather in London Tan.

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I ordered two pieces of this London tan leather 30 mm wide to fit my buckles it is far more golden yellow than the picture shows.

I used my new leather splitter to reduce the thickness of each piece to 2 mm giving an overall thickness of 4 mm rather than the original 6mm. As both pieces were of equal thickness there would be no step when one end was folded to fit the buckle.

I thinned a another piece to 1.5 mm to make the two belt loops. These need to be fitted as the buckle is added.

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Here is the satin buckle fitted and stitched in place with its pair of belt loops. It also shows the true colour of the belt.

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Here is the finished belt fully stitched with brown linen thread.

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Thanks for looking

Michael

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