Leathersmith: Christian South-Alderson
In 2012 I started teaching myself how to make small leather goods so I could give one of kind personalized gifts to family members for the holidays. I learned everything I could about the different tooling techniques and the tools needed to turn a blank leather canvas into a beautiful picture or design. Once I figured out how to tool the leather, I sought out every book and web forum available to learn how to transform leather into everyday practical items. Through trial and error I finally honed my skills enough to be proud of the items I produced, which led me to traveling around the surrounding states to sell my handmade goods at art shows and the creation of this website.
Most artists that work with leather typically call themselves leather workers or leather craftsmen. I choose to label myself as a leathersmith because it reminds me of the craftsmen who were once the corner stone of the communities they lived in. The leather workers, blacksmiths, metalsmiths, goldsmiths, woodworkers and stone masons honed their process and skills to near perfection giving a little piece of themselves with everything they produced. The inhabitants and community as a whole benefited from the skills and hard work of these craftsmen while trading or bartering something they worked hard for in exchange for the work of the craftsman.
Every leather product I sell is 100% handmade by myself in my workshop. Once I cut and assemble the product, I hand sew the product utilizing the saddle stitch which is stronger than the lock stitch which is used in most sewing machines. The saddle stitch has been used for centuries and is preferred by most leather workers because of its strength and durability.
Most of my products are made using leather from the Horween Leather Tannery in Chicago, Illinois. The Horween tannery which was founded in 1905 has honed their process to near perfection producing some of the best leather in the world. Horween leather comes at a premium compared to most leathers on the market but the quality and beauty justifies every cent.
The use of the highest quality leather and hand sewing is part of my process to make the best possible products that will last generations. I guarantee my products and in the unlikely event that there is a problem with the materials or craftsmanship, I will repair or replace your item.
Slight variation from product to product is to be expected due to the nature of my process and materials. My guarantee does not cover normal wear and tear or damage due to mistreatment of the product. Any damage caused by normal use can be repaired with a minimal charge if the materials are still available.