Friday, October 4, 2013

A Recycled Boot is Now Leather Cuffs Accented with Pottery Beads

     My family has always recycled items since I was a child.  Only when I was a child, it was not called recycling and it wasn't necessarily cool like it is now.  I wore recycled clothes (hand me downs).  My mom and dad re-purposed items daily (old stuff used again).  Daddy bought scrap metal at the salvage yard and made everything you can imagine from bar-b-q pits to cattle pens.  Mama recycled old jars and filled them with delicious canned goods; and she would even save every last piece of pie crust when she made a pie and roll it out and fill it with cinnamon, sugar and pecans for a tasty treat for us kids.  If it could be used again it did not get thrown away.
     My husband just bought a new pair of work boots and I spied them before they made the trash and I recycled one of the boots into two leather cuff bracelets.  I still have one boot and have plans to use it soon.  Here is a quick tutorial on how hand me down boots became two new bracelets.

    First I cut the leather into 1 1/2 to 2 inch leather strips about 9 inches long.  I added a metal button (see previous post for how to).  On this bracelet I wanted to use the leather piece that you hook your fingers into when pulling on the boot.  I took a pony tail holder in a brown shade to use as part of the connector.

      Regular everyday pony band for hair
     I cut the band in half and threaded it into the loop of the boot for my connector.
      I tied a knot in the pony band and put some glue on it to secure it, then I hid the knot under the leather loop.
      Here is the start of my first cuff, the leather came from the part of the boot that was the side at one time. 
      I choose one of my 30x60mm cuff beads in Sea Green and I held it up against the leather and marked the holes to match the holes in the bead, then I punched additional holes just outside those that matched the bead.  Using a leather punch makes this really easy (see previous post for how to).
      I then used waxed linen thread, available at your local craft store and I sewed the bead on using simple stitches and knotted the thread on the back of the leather. Below is the finished product.  I think it turned out cute and edgy.

     For the second cuff I put two of the metal buttons on it and cut holes for the button hole (see previous post for how to).  I determined the center of the leather and placed a key hole bead to the middle and marked the hole placement and then punched holes using my leather punch tool.  Then punch a hole just outside of the holes that match the beads so you can sew your key hole bead on to the leather.  I used simple stitches with the thread and since the holes in the leather are large and the thread is waxed you do not need a needle as it goes in easily.
     Gather some old keys and punch holes on either side of the keys and sew on to the leather using waxed linen thread.

    This is the back and you can see the stitching where the bead and keys are.
 The finished cuff, I really love this one. I wore it yesterday and received lots of compliments.

      I hope you enjoy the tutorial, have a great day! Cindy

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