Helping strangers with leather work

A question was raised in this leather group I participate in. It’s on Google+ and that’s when I thought…this is great information on leather work and should be sharing it on my blog.The two(2) questions went something like this: I ran into a new issue with a journal cover I was making. Well, two, but one is more manageable.

1. After I dyed, waxed and stitched the journal cover together I went to fold it in half and as I did I got these awful cracks along the spine. The dye is Eco-Flo Pro, with Atom Wax finish. The guys at Tandy were stumped, and said the piece doesn’t feel dried out. Anyone else have any experience with this? Tandy guys suggested I try some of the hide rejuvenator on it. But I want to try and otherwise prevent this for future work.

2. The second issue is with my edges when I’m stitching. As much care as I put into aligning the edges when I glue them there always seems to be some shifting. By the time I’m done with all the stitching the edges will have a millimeter offset. Most instances this is fine, but on occasion I’ll find the separation continue to happen after I burnish the edges. Any suggestions for keeping the edges from shifting?

I thought I could lend assistance to the question and I replied with this:

I only wish I had someone to ask these questions! Here’s my routine to avoid the ill-fated cracking of let’s say a belt, journal….
Cut and glue liner to main body. If to be folded I fold wallet back to closed position almost and install liner. Why you ask? To avoid the wrinkle in middle. Anybody go about that differently? Tool main body, oil and try to keep fold closed rather than open. Punch stitch holes re-wet minimally fold area. Use warm water briskly on entire piece to open up pores to accept dyes, antiques  and the like more evenly. I feel like I’m boring ya’s. Oh, at a fold area no matter what I skive it. It always makes a difference.
The edges….. I always skive them to lessen excessive thickness. The liner I always make bigger than the main body and all interior parts I try to incorporate extra for a one time cut. Uneven edges I sand, scotchbrite pad til you’re satisfied. I rarely use antiques and have never used eco products to date.

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