DIY Leather Wand Sheath: Part 2
Recap time! Remember to have your wand and your supplies, and make sure you’re following the safety tips. Right now, I’m going to be making a rustic sheath using the sewing technique. Now we can get started!
The Sheath Pattern
To start, we’re doing the organic sheath. The first time I made this, I completely free-formed it, finding the perfect curve of leather, folding it over my wand to create the shape, cutting it out, and sealing it with wax thread. You’re more than welcome to use this technique, but my husband thought that for this time, we should make a pattern. So we traced out the first completed sheath on drawing paper, but feel free to use whatever materials that you’re comfortable with. We extended the curve, measured out the belt holes, and cut out the pattern.
Since we’re using a pattern this time, we’ll focus on working with the pattern instead of the free-form method. We’ll go over the basics of leatherworking as well. Remember, if you have questions, please contact your local leather vendor. They’ll be able to answer questions, point you in the right direction, and give you tips! Our local Tandy shop is very knowledgeable, and we learned almost everything we know from them!
It’s time to work with the leather. What we chose for this project was a medium-weight black suede leather, especially because Helga Hufflepuff’s colors are gold and black. Lay out your leather and find a section relatively free of any natural deformities in the leather (which should be expected) to work with. I like trying to find something along the edges, but don’t be afraid to tackle the middle either. Suede leather has a light side and a dark side. The dark side is the “finished” side, which is going to be the outside of the sheath. Trace out your pattern on the “light” or unfinished side. You can either trace out two different pieces of leather to sew together or flip your pattern over to create one piece of leather that will be folded over before being sewn.
Once you’re done tracing, get out your cutting board and straight blade. Remember, CONSTANT VIGILANCE! Be extremely careful and have someone watch while you are using sharp instruments! Put the cutting board under the leather and slowly work your way around the outline with the straight-blade. Take it slow and easy. I cannot stress how carefully this needs to be done. Cut out the belt holes next, being even more careful since they are much smaller. Once you have everything cut out, we’re ready to move on to sewing!
Sewing Your Sheath
For this part, you’re going to need the leather punches and rubber mallet. Either place your two leather pieces together and line up the edges, or fold over your one piece of leather and line up the edges. Make sure the finished side is what is facing out. What we’re going to do is punch holes in the leather to do a wrap stitch to seal the edges and belt holes. A wrap stitch starts with going through the bottom of one set of holes and around the edges of the fabric or leather and through the top of the next set of holes to start the cycle again. Start with the belt holes. Use the two-prong leather punch and rubber mallet to create as evenly spaced holes as you can around the belt holes. The best part about wax thread is that it adheres to the leather and you only need one strand, as opposed to a traditional double-thread sewing technique. Sew them up using the leather needle and wax thread in a wrap stitch and use a binding knot to seal it at the end. This will keep the belt holes from degrading from constant use.
Repeat the hole punching along the outer edges, once again as evenly as you possibly can. Try not to get too close to the edges and be careful with keeping the edges together. You’ll be doing the same wrap stitch when all the holes are completed. This will take an hour or more. I love the sewing part. I find that it’s very soothing. If you find that the holes have shrunk, just re-hammer them into the leather with the smaller pronged tool and rubber mallet. When you’re done, tie a double binding knot to seal the wax thread.
And congratulations, we’re done! Wear it to the next convention or just around the town, anywhere you want to take your wand. Next week will be the instructions for the riveted sheath! See you then!