Making use of vertical space

Posted in Projects on June 19th, 2016 by The Cyberwolfe

Bows On the Wall

Since the move to the smaller apartment, the archery equipment has been relegated to the bedroom closet, and the Wife thought it should be out where people could see it – and more importantly, clear out valuable shelf space. With that in mind, I came up with using a couple of spare belt blanks to act as the anchors, and some simple loop-and-toggle pairs to secure the items to the straps.

Loop and toggle detail

Just a simple loop of lace wrapped up and around the toggle. Yes, my stamping is a little off. I wasn’t measuring.

Button? Toggle?

Those toggles are just a strip of leather rolled up with a bit of lace run through it to secure the roll – and I just decided to do a tutorial on those as a separate post – come back tomorrow for that. Unless you’re reading this at some point in the future, in which case you probably just read it.

Timelines are hell.

Anyway, for those that are interested: Yes, I made the quiver on the right, see this post. The quiver on the left was left behind with the bottom bow.

From top to bottom:

  • Das Flingenstick, a 35# English-style longbow. Red oak backed with linen.
  • My daughter’s 25# Samick recurve
  • A wimpy flatbow a buddy left behind when he moved out. It’s mostly decorative.

Workbench 2.5

Posted in Projects on June 11th, 2016 by The Cyberwolfe

After about a year with the modded computer desk as a primary workbench, we’ve made some adjustments. One of these is we balanced a board between my right-hand drawers and the computer case on the left at the back of the desk to keep the kitten from playing in the cords back there. This of course turned into Kitty Highway 101, and eventually to both cats deciding my desk was an onramp, no matter what sharp bits may have been laying out.

This was starting to piss me off pretty good. Plus, I have all these sharp bits laying out and needed more organization. So, viola! Pegboard walls to block the cats and hang my tools on.

Workbench 2.5

Home Despot carries pegboard in 1/4 sheet “hobby boards”, and the birch 2×2’s were easy enough to trim to length with my jigsaw. The walls were screwed to the 2×2’s, and then I ran a pocket screw through each of the uprights and down into the work surface. So far I haven’t needed to brace it any.

Rose Handbag

Posted in Projects on February 7th, 2016 by The Cyberwolfe

My lovely wife requested a handbag, and chose a rose motif for the carving. I’m not very good at floral carving, but I can follow a good tutorial as well as the next guy, so I went out and found a few good tutorials. And a vintage pattern – I think my mom used to have a purse much like this one way back in the day.

There are a couple things that need some tweaking if I ever do this again, but all in all, I’m pleased with the results.

Rose Handbag


Field Notes Wallet

Posted in Projects on November 11th, 2015 by The Cyberwolfe

I took advantage of a downtime at work and talked the boss into giving me a week off, so I’ve been tooling around the last few days trying out a few new ideas and working on my skills.

One of the dreams in the back of my head is to someday quit my day job and just be a leathercrafter as a paying trade, so I keep my eye out for things I could sell. One such item is a combination wallet and cover for a notebook.

They have a version of this on the Field Notes website, and I’ve seen a couple variants on Etsy sites, so I thought I’d whip up my own version:

Notebook cover   Full Cover

This is basically a prototype, so I just kept it simple and natural rather than dying it. At this point it’s just burnished edges and a swipe with some saddle soap to clean up the scraps I used to make it.

The height of a Field Notes notebook means you have a little extra if you place the card pockets as shown here, but I haven’t come up with a good way to get around it yet. The double row of stitching seems to be the consensus as the way do deal with it. The next one may have vertical card slots instead. Behind the cards is another pocket for notes or paper money.

full interior   Loaded inside

This ended up being the slightest bit too small, an annoying trend in my prototypes. It takes a little finagling to get the notebook properly ensconced in its pocket, and the back pocket on the left side could be a tad shorter – or the whole thing could be a tad wider making for a larger “middle” space between the sides.

All in all, however, I’d say it’s a success. Now to figure out a good way to get a pen loop in there…

Ducky new wallet

Posted in Projects on October 26th, 2015 by The Cyberwolfe

My older brother was impressed with my Firefly wallet and his birthday is this month so I made him something to show off.

Finished design

And the inside:

Wallet interior

Each of those diagonal slots will hold two or three cards, so there’s plenty of space.

Scrapbin Quickie

Posted in Projects on July 4th, 2015 by The Cyberwolfe

Several years back the wife tripped across the SHARPEST GORRAM KNIVES EVAR, and we’ve had to create new rules for dealing with them around the house lest we inadvertently lose an appendage. (Seriously, these things are like eating with a lightsaber. “Oh, I’ll just cut off a piece of this steak, mmm, wait, why did the table fall apart?”)

So, considering we have a bin for keeping tableware in when we go camping the chances of randomly losing a finger while looking for a spoon were pretty high, and the wife asked me to do something about it.


Camping sheath

(On a side note, pretty new slab under the sheath there. Woot.)

“Firefly”-themed Biker / Long wallet

Posted in Projects on February 22nd, 2015 by The Cyberwolfe

I have no worldly need for a wallet of this nature, and yet my brain would simply not let the idea go – so I made one. If nothing else, it was a learning experience and if I ever make another, that next wallet will be better for having made this one.

Still, I think it’s really cool :)


While I would love to have done a more detailed view of Serenity on the back, doing so would have required doing a much large image, and I was concerned about how folding it through the middle would affect the image, so we get just an outline.

The ‘back’ side makes everyone say “aww…” and sniff a little because that rat bastard killed Wash, but we’ll get over it someday:


On the inside, we find the usual zippered pocket and a stack of card slots. I’ve added another card slot behind the zipper pocket as a convenient place to stash my driver’s license. I tossed the idea of adding an ID card slot with a window to the front of the zipper pocket, but couldn’t quite come up with a design I liked. I’ll have to revisit that in the next one.

Speaking of that zipper – the big chunky one looks cool and all, but it doesn’t want to close once I have it opened. folding the pocket over tightly like that makes the teeth go out of alignment when you’re trying to close it. I’ll have to use a smaller zipper next time.


I lined the interior with the same pigskin that I used in the cell phone belt case I made some time ago. This leaves open the possibility of installing an RFID-proof liner in the next model as well – something I will probably do once the USA gets in sync with the rest of the world and starts using the new chip-and-pin cards like they use in Europe.

Here it is with some cards installed and the pockets open. There’s a bill pocket behind both sides, so plenty of room to store the cash that I never carry. (I live on my debit card instead.)

Zipper Detail

Again, I think it came out pretty cool, despite the horrible block-dye job on the front. (More like blotch-dye job. I bought an airbrush to make that better in the future, just need to practice with it.)

Now I either have to start wearing a sport coat or get a job that doesn’t mind me wearing jeans to the office.

Dance Card wallet

Posted in Projects on January 6th, 2015 by The Cyberwolfe

I can’t remember where I heard the term, but somewhere on the Internet is a guy who called a minimalist wallet a “Dance Card wallet”, and the phrase stuck in my head. Points to anyone who can find original attribution.

In any case, the wife has been carrying all her must-have cards around in one of those little pull-out ID slots rather than carry her full wallet because of the space it takes up, so I thought I could do one better. This one has two pockets on the back and a full window on the front, including a vinyl inlay to keep the card from falling out. I cut the pockets generous enough to allow for double-stacking the cards if needed.



I think I should have gone back over those stitch grooves with a brush, seems a little pale behind the thread. Notes for the next model…

Dice bag

Posted in Projects on September 7th, 2014 by The Cyberwolfe

My daughter took up role-playing games recently, so we’ve set her up with her own set of dice – but of course, she’ll need a snazzy way to carry them around, right? :)

I’ve made a couple of these before, but thought I would hit a Norse/viking theme for this one.


There are two inscriptions, both thanks to the fine folks over at Viking Rune. The top one says “af heppni er sigr”, which loosely translates to “from luck, victory”. The bottom inscription is a simple transliteration of “Blood for Odin”, which is a reference to this happy tale.

The inner design itself is a reference to the time Odin stole all of the mead. There’s a true viking for ya!

Travel Card Box

Posted in Projects on July 27th, 2014 by The Cyberwolfe

Completed Box

We play a lot of Quiddler in this house, so naturally we like to take one with us when we travel. The box it normally comes in is fine, but we’ve been in a couple spots where it would be nice to have something to corral all of the cards during the game so that they don’t slide all over the place – the deck is over 100 cards, so it can get pretty messy if your only horizontal surface isn’t exactly firm or level…

In any case, I thought it would be nice to have a custom case for our most-played game. You could use this same idea for any number of large-deck card games.

Rough Protoype

The original design idea seen here was pieced-together and box-stitched, and I think it would still be a nice way to do it – but I didn’t get my seam allowances correct in this prototype, and the thing ended up being too small (by like an effing millimeter…) so I had to rebuild from scratch. And while the box stitch always looks good, it’s a pain in the ass so I went with the frame-and-cap design I  used originally on the card divider way back when.

Loaded for Game

As you can see on the final piece, by the time I was ready to do the top, I was completely sick of sewing and came up with a folded & riveted design instead. It came out just the slightest bit… off… somehow, and the corners aren’t all exact, but it was good enough to keep so I left it alone.

Speaking of “off”, if you look at the top in that first picture, you may notice that my geometric stamp pattern isn’t quite straight as well. Turns out, doing this sort of pattern stamping is a bit of a beast, and you really need a guide framework to get it perfect. Luckily, there’s a Craftaid for that, and it’s on my shopping list. Highly recommended if you plan on doing this sort of thing.