The Truth

Via cyanide and happiness (frequently NSFW, but this one is safe)   The thing about this effect is that it never leaves you, but it can be the most noticeable when you’re past the “just starting out” phase, and you’ve hit the “argh, everything is crap” phase that you hit …

picture of a fine closing awl on a bench with the blade resting on a ruler for measurment

Fine Closing Awl

This is the awl I use for fine work and for round closing 2-2.5mm thick leather. It was made from a small allen key, though 3mm music wire would also work well. I cut the angle off the allen key, stuck it in a drill and tapered it with a …

Some Random Thoughts on Making Medieval Reproductions

Building reproduction medieval objects for reenactment is an exercise in compromise. There are occasions where an object can be recreated using nothing but accurately reproduced tools and materials produced and processed as they would have been for the original object, but these are rare opportunities and often expensive undertakings. For the …

Site Changes

I’m in the process of migrating the site to new hosting, which is entailing some back end and theme changes. Please bear with me while I work through the issues that are cropping up. I hope the changes will prove worthwhile and enable me to post more useful content more …

Medieval and Renaissance Awl Hafts

Following on from my previous two posts about awls, I should say something about medieval awl hafts since none of the hafts I’ve pictured previously are medieval in shape (one is an attempt, but it’s all wrong). Marc Carlson has a lot of pictures of historic shoemakers on his Footwear …

Scratch awl

An Awl That’s Not For Making Holes

I’ve seen had several people new to leatherwork or shoemaking tell me they’ve bought an awl but they are having real trouble getting it to make holes properly. Most times when I’ve asked them to show it to me, they’ve shown me one of these: It’s called a scratch awl and …

Awl collection

Awls

After a year in which, thanks to various ailments, I’ve bought a lot more tools than I’ve used,  I now have a fairly reasonable collection of awls. No two have the same haft, and there are a few definite favorites in the collection. Most of the awls I have were …

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