Leather working has always been a hobby I’ve wanted to get into. Then a few years ago I found my in. It was time to get rid of an old leather jacket of my husbands and then shortly after that I inherited a suede jacket from my in-laws. I decided to save both of them and repurpose them. Once again I took on the task of “Camp Crafts” for our annual girls youth camp. Our camp craft budget is small and this year we had 35 girls planning on coming. So, these old jackets would become new camp DIY leather bracelets.
The following are a few that I made up as examples for what the girls could make.
This colorful cuff bracelet was very simple to make. I just stitched a design into the leather with embroidery thread. To fasten this bracelet I stitched on a decorative bead and made a loop of threat to slip it through like a button.
Blue and white vintage cotton ribbon was the catalyst for this design. I used two grommets to attach the suede and ribbon together. Then I hand stitched white embroidery thread flowers to tack it down. Then with navy string I tied it in a bow through the grommets. I also added a random decorative bead thing that I had lying around.
A roll of twine and a hole punch make a more masculine earthy bracelet. I drew the design with a pen on the inside of the bracelet to guide where to punch the holes for the X’s. Then with two grommets, one on each end I just wove the twine through and tied it together on the back side of my wrist.
Because I deconstruct all old shorts and pants rather than throwing them away, I have a bunch of random buttons collected. I just hand sewed three to a strip of suede with embroidery floss and added a few X’s as accents. The ends are again just tied together.
This “magic” leather bracelet was the girls favorite. It is neat, clean, and simple to do, after you get the hang of it. For these it is best to use a thin strip of leather. Fold it in half and cut it starting in the crease two times, but do not cut it all the way through. Then do a braid like technique and it turns out magically braided without cutting all the way through the leather. There is a tutorial for braiding it HERE. Instead of a snap or tie, many of the girls stitched a small bead like a button on one end and cut a slit in the leather to push it through on the other.
I cut the jackets into three sizes of bracelets and let the girls make theirs however they wanted. I brought all kinds of supplies that I had lying around my craft room and let them come up with their own designs. I loved seeing the ideas that they came up with and this craft cost almost nothing since I had most of the supplies already. The young women ended up stacking all different styles of bracelets together and I even saw them wearing them to school this past week, and that’s a sign of a well-loved craft. Happy crafting!