I received a leather hide in the mail last week I immediately wanted to get creating with it (that is of course after I wrapped it around me like a blanket and smelled it like a thousand times). However, I’ve never had a whole leather hide to myself, I kinda got the jitters a bit when I had to actually cut into it.
Like really bad.
So bad I still haven’t.
But I had to, someone at the Leather Hide Store was expecting me to. I decided I would just shave a bit off the edge, baby steps, right? Plus, my camera works so hard, I decided she deserved a new leather camera strap.
This leather camera strap is super easy to make, and doesn’t require any fancy sewing.
Follow along to learn how to make this easy Leather Camera Strap with a lens pocket.
You will need a few basic supplies
- Leather- two strips 2″ x 38″ (the length may need to be adjusted depending on the height of the user). Plus 5 pieces cut from the included pattern (download here) for the strap ends, and lens pocket.
- 1 piece of fabric 3″ x 7.5″ to line the lens pocket.
- 2- 1″ D rings, 2- split key rings (although if you can find lanyard rings I think they would be better).
- Scissors, rotary cutter, ruler, top stitching thread, coordinating thread to the leather, rivet kit (I got mine at Michaels), snap kit, fabric glue, leather stamp kit (optional, available at Michaels also).
To start, if you’ve never sewed with leather there are a few things that are good to know if using a basic machine.
- Sew slow, with a long stitch length.
- Use a needle specifically for leather/vinyl. A leather needle is like a knife on each edge that will slice as it goes through, unlike a regular needle that will puncture the leather, potentially damaging your machine.
- If you plan to top stitch do it on one layer of leather, the more layers the harder your machine has to work to pull the thick thread through.
To learn more visit Delia Creates where she has put together a short list of tips.
Here we go… Leather Camera Strap 101-
- After you’ve cut your two long strips, and your pattern pieces, the next step is to top stitch if you choose. Totally not necessary, but it gives that finished look. If you do, at this point you will stitch around one of the long strips, and around the two key shaped pattern pieces.
- Assemble the lens pocket. Sew the fabric with the wrong sides together around the parameter. Using your lens cap as a guide determine where the pocket will need to fold. Place a scrap of cardboard over the leather and bang on the crease with a hammer until it will stay folded. Punch holes and apply a snap using the snap kit.
- Now you will sew the two long strips of leather together using the coordinating thread color, around the entire parameter.
- Next you will need to assemble the ends of the camera strap. You will need the 2 pattern pieces shaped like a key, the two D rings and the fabric glue (E6000 would work too). Slip the D rings onto the long strip, squirt a bit of glue on the leather and flip the tail up. Hold with a binder clip until dry.
- Attach the pocket to the strap- Try the long strip around your neck and determine where the pocket would be best, mark. Lightly glue pocket in place, using a chalk pencil mark where you will sew to attach the pocket in a square with a ‘X’. This will be between the two crease marks you made with the hammer.
- Fold pocket bottom up and sew the two edges closed.
- Add the strap ends to the long strips of leather by sandwiching between the two pattern pieces, using the rivet kit ad 3 rivets to secure. Instructions will be included in the package.
- On a additional piece of leather, if desired use the leather stamp kit to personalize the strap by adding your name. Attach with rivets.
- Attach the strap to the camera using the split rings.
So what do you think, prepared to never loose your lens cap again?
This leather camera strap is a great beginner project for leather work. Should you have any questions please don’t hesitate to ask!
Looking for some ideas for scrap leather? Check out these 10 Leather Scrap project ideas