Introduction: Leather Coasters

These are cute coasters that's handmade from tooling. Functional and personable as well.

The coasters have a 4" diameter. As for the designs, I just drew what a friend of mine would enjoy.


You will need:

Vegetable-tanned natural leather

Mallet and a set of tooling stamps

Swivel knife

Mister bottle to wet the leather

Leather knife/box cutter

Leather Waterproofing Spray (I use what Tandy's has)

Step 1: Step 1: Figure Out the Design

I first draw a circle with a 4" diameter on a piece of paper with a rim around the inside so that there's structure to the overall design. It gives an edge for more complex designs as well.

Once it's drawn out, trace it with a very fine tip permanent marker onto tracing film.

Step 2: Step 2: Trace Onto Leather

I prefer to spray down the area of leather I'm going to be tracing onto, as it makes the tracing with the stylus easier to see. (Tools deeper into the leather) Be careful, as making mistakes like large lines that don't belong will be harder to hide later. Use just enough pressure to leave a mark on the leather.

Be sure to water down leather often enough. Now, use the swivel knife to cut the lines over where you drew. The blade must be sharp, so resharpen when you notice it getting dull.

*If you're not confident in your skills, practice on scrap leather first. Especially tiny curves, as it can be very hard depending on your drawing. Once you're confident, start on the coaster.*

Now, onto the next step.

Step 3: Step 3: Add Details and Shading

Here is where you use your tools to add depth to your coaster.

For mine, I tooled the blank background to enhance the focus, bringing, for example, the chicken, to the foreground. Then, I go around the 'outside' of different parts of the drawing to give the extra depth.

The more spraying you do, the darker it slowly gets.

Step 4: Step 4: Cutting Out the Coasters

Be careful and take it slow, as one slip and it's over.

I use my box cutter to follow around the outside and cut out the coaster. Then, I file down the edges by using friction from by mallet rubbing back and forth to soften the sharpness.

Step 5: Step 5: Protection :)

Take your nearly finished coasters outside and spray them down, both front and back, (or paint if you use that type) with waterproof spray. Be sure to spray one side, wait for it to dry, then spray the other.

Spraying them down will darken them a couple of shades.

Once it's completely dry, congratulations! You've made yourself some awesome coasters.


Leather Challenge

Participated in the
Leather Challenge