Sometimes, you just want all your stuff in one place, easy to access, and neatly arranged. All this plus some leather would be a great alternative to what you've got going on right now.
In this instructable, I'll show you how to create a minimalist roll up leather case that is as modern as it is nostalgic.
Let's get started!
Step 1: Materials
You can choose to make this project as fancy/complicated or as simple as you like. I walked a middle path with mine, and here is what I used:
leather remnant (I used a thickness of 2mm, which I found easy to work with)
straight edge/ ruler
rotary blade or exacto knife
leather hole punch
button stud with screw back or just a regular button
screw driver for button stud
needle & nylon thread
Optional: (to cure the edges of the cut leather, but you can easily leave it raw as well)
Step 2: Cutting the Leather
I started off with a leather remnant, which by definition means it has all sorts of crazy chunks cut out of it.
I began by eyeballing where I could get the longest cut from for the belt part of the pouch. I managed to cut out a 17x1.5 inch belt. However, if my leather remnant would have allowed, I would have cut the belt a few inches longer.
Next, I cut out a rectangle shape which would serve as the pouch itself. The final dimensions of that were 13x8 inches
Step 3: Rounding Corners
Because square corners tend to take more of a beating, I opted to round out the corners of the pouch by first making a paper template of the curved degree, then drawing it onto the leather itself. Then, using an exacto (or my handy swiss army knife) I cut out all 4 corners.
Step 4: Smoothing Edges
This part is completely optional, but it does burnish out the edges giving the pouch a more professional look
I lightly brushed a layer of gum tragacanth along the entire edge of both the pouch and belt, then I briskly ran a leather edge slicker to straighten out and line in any stray fibers.
Step 5: Finding the Center
Find the center of the pouch and place the belt over it. Using chalk, trace out the width of the belt.
Step 6: Cutting Slits
Using a straight edge and an exacto, I began cutting vertical slits between the two lines of chalk I had drawn in the previous step. How far apart those slits are will be how thick an instrument you can place inside that shaft. Remember, however, that every other slit will be where the belt gets threaded through on the other side, and thus not usable storage for an instrument. I made a total of 14 slits.
Be careful with this part! Precision + sharp blade = easy mistakes.
Step 7: Threading Belt
With all the slits cut, begin threading your belt through them. Take note that the one side of the the pouch will need the belt to face the outside.
Step 8: Hand Stitching
Using a needle and thick nylon thread, I hand stitched the belt onto the body of the pouch. You can use any stitch style you like, but I used a simple back stitch (which gives the appearance of being run through a sewing machine)
I tied the ends on the belly-side of the pouch. Now the belt is secured to the body of the pouch.
Step 9: Hole Punching the Belt
On the back side of the pouch (the part that will be facing OUT when closed) I chose a point where the belt was showing to make a hole where the button stud would be screwed through. This way, when the pouch is closed, the belt tail could wrap around the body and be buttoned in.
Applying the button stud is incredibly easy; I simply made a small hole with a leather hole puncher, inserted the back end and placed the head through the other side, and screwed the two pieces together, with the leather in between. Ta da!
Step 10: ...More Hole Making
The part of the belt that is sticking out through one end of the pouch is where holes need to be made for the button stud to fit into. I decided on making four holes, but would need to make tiny slits off shooting each hole, that would allow the head of the button to comfortably fit through.
(Because my belt tail was only about 4 inches longer than the width of the pouch body, I did not have much variation in how chunky the pouch could get.)
Step 11: Enjoy!
Enjoy your new pencil/tool/utensils, hardware, etc. case!