I have always loved Pippa’s binders (see her Etsy shop here), which is why I asked her to write about them in a guest post. The binders are compatible with Filofax personal size paper, which is 17×9.5cm, with the six holes.
Here is Pippa’s own blog, The Leathercraft Shed, where she describes the work that goes into making one of these beautiful organisers and lets us follow the process with her .I have always hankered after the woven ones and now I know why – look at that stunner in the header photograph! Thank you Pippa for this very interesting post and now – over to you 🙂
‘I made my first personal organiser when I was about eighteen! I got into leathercraft after learning how to mend broken bridles and saddlery from a correspondence course and used to mend all the broken tack from a couple of local riding schools. From there, I discovered decorative leather and began making leather belts and keyrings and dog collars which I used to sell at craft fairs. At some point, I must have studied the personal organiser that I had and I made my first organisers to sell.
I have always LOVED stationery, even just browsing stationery catalogues. My first organiser was a cardboard one with Dennis the Menace on the front and I used it all the time for schoolwork planning. When I was in my teens, I was given a proper organiser and I still used it right up to recently, when I decided it was time to replace it with one of my own leather ones.
Above and below are a couple of photos of the organiser that I made and use for myself. I made a similar one as a gift for my midwife after the birth of my sixth (and last!) baby in 2011 and I like it so much that I made another for my Etsy shop, but decided to keep it instead as a kind of memento to all my beloved babies and pregnancies. I have still kept my old, very battered organiser that I had from my teens and I keep the old diary inserts in there as I can’t bear to bin it! I just love my organiser, I love the smell of the leather and the weight of it in my hand. It has got a little scratched because I like to carry it around with me in my handbag, but that’s the great thing about real leather, it just suits getting scratched and seems to improve with use. I will give my organiser a wipe over with some wax and a polish and it will smarten it up again.
I don’t have such a lot of time for leathercraft at present as I home educate my children and my youngest is only 16 months old, but I hope to have more time in the future. I would like to explore making larger (A5 sized) organisers with more pockets inside and a place for a pen and I would like to try different designs too. I used to draw a lot and paint with oil paints, but found it a bit stressful, so I now use my sketches for my leather designs instead which is much more fun. I want to try sketching hares to see how this translates on to leather as, like horses, I find them fascinating and such graceful animals to study.
At some point, I’d like to find a shop that will stock my leathercraft as I currently only sell online, via Etsy. I think I need to build my stock up a lot more to be able to do this though, so it’ something for the future.’