INDIAN HANDICRAFTS – LEATHER WORK
Leather Handicrafting or Leathercraft is the practice of making leather into craft objects or works of art, using shaping techniques, coloring techniques or both. Leather stamping work involves the use of shaped implements (stamps) to create an imprint onto a leather surface, often by striking the stamps with a mallet. Leather carving entails using metal implements to compress moistened leather in such a way as to give a three dimensional appearance to a two dimensional surface. The surface of the leather is not intended to be cut through, as would be done in filigree.
Leather dyeings also involved in handcraft work, usually involves the use of spirit or alcohol based dyes where alcohol quickly gets absorbed into moistened leather, carrying the pigment deep into the surface. “Hi-liters” and “Antiquing” stains can be used to add more definition to this patterns. These have pigments that will break away from the higher points of a tooled piece and so pooling in the background areas gives nice contrasts. Leaving parts unstained also provides a type of contrast.
Leather painting differs from leather dyeing in that, paint remains only on the surface while dyes are absorbed into the leather work. Due to this difference leather painting techniques are generally not used on items that can or must bend nor on items that receive friction, such as belts and wallets because under these conditions, the paint is likely to crack and also flake off.