Friday, 17 February 2012

Leather Carving Class - Day 5

This is the last class of the 5 day leather carving class. Today we focussed on dying leather.

The teacher walked us through the different types of dyes available (who knew all the stuff I have is the wrong stuff for the projects I was doing?).

So we used some of the water based dye to paint the background of our project and then applied the clear coat on top to help protect it. Project looks pretty good if you ignore my mistakes on the carving.

I didn't have time to paint any of my other projects so will have to do that next.

Short summary of the dyes for future reference:

1) Fiebings is a chemical dye (can't remember the exact term). Hard to wash up, but goes much deeper into the leather. Can't be mixed to make new colours and needs some extra work to finish. Also needs to be sealed properly or it will rub off. Best used with a dauber.

Fiebings also makes a paste dye that works really well for an antique effect. Use sheep skin or a rag to apply and then buff using a sheepskin.

2) Highlighter is a dye that you use to emphasize your carving. Rub it on the whole project and then lightly wipe it off. It will wipe of the surface, but will stay inside the lowered edges of your carving and"highlight it" Can use a foam brush to apply.

3) Acrylic dyes are kind of like acrylic paint, except they dry flexible. Generally used for small accent colours rather than painting an entire project. Paint brush to apply.

4) Water based dyes are the Zeli's brand product. They can be combined to make other colours and are more easily cleaned since they are water based. Can also be mixed with water to thin it so that the colour is less opaque for specific effects. Best applied using a brush or foam brush. Don't use the dauber.

So that's it for my class. I think I picked up a lot of basic technique that I can apply to my SCA projects.

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