HI- I'm interested in trying to make a bear with a sewn on stuffed leather nose. I'm not sure where to find thin flexible leather, though; neither the craft store nor the fabric store near me have anything even remotely possible. Can anyone point me in the right direction?
I bought some at a show from Loptien Leather. I think it's the lambskin that's the softest stuff, with a wonderful, buttery sheen. Their website is: http://www.loptienleather.com/
Best part is, you can get bitty little pieces; you don't have to order, say, an entire yard wide piece. There are often bits available in odd sizes around 12x12 inches.
I thought a leather nose would be hard to do as well...but they aren't. Jennifer Laing showed me how to do one in a workshop earlier this year. I'm sure as in most things, there are many ways to do it. We used really soft, thin leather....we bought a leather coat at a thrift shop for about $5.00. I think that's the thing that always put me off trying was that the leather noses looked thick and I couldn't get my head around how you could stitch thru it. So you need soft, thin leather.
Anyway...we cut the shape of the nose we wanted, then glued it on with a bit of Kwik Grip, and just used an applique stitch to attach it. I went around the nose about three times, to make it all look even. You can stitch very close to the edge of the leather without it pulling through. Also, if you want a raised leather nose, you can either attach shapes under the nose template before you start sewing the top layer on...as in start with a small shape, glue on a slightly larger shape, and so on, until it gets to the height you are after. Another method Jennifer told us is to skip the glue bit (takes a bit more patience) and sew around three quarters of the nose....push some stuffing in and then close the opening. Voila!
Check out www.hidehouse.com. They have two locations in CA. One in Napa and one in San Dimas. They could put together a grab bag of small scraps for you.
Have you seen the leather noses that are made using a pie piece shape? Bring the two flat edges together to turn it into a cone shape. Attach the wide part of the cone to the bears nose then fold the point down over the seam. All of this can be glued but since I really dislike doing much with glue on mohair I tend to stitch.
Thank you all once again for your help. Since I'm impatient to start (the bear is done except for the nose), I think I'll check out the second hand stores for a pair of gloves or an old coat if I get lucky! I did try Michael's but the leather seemed too thick to sew or drape in the way I have in my mind. I gave this bear an open mouth.It was the first time I tried doing that and (s)he seems like (s)he needs a big nose to balance the look.
You're a great resource group to turn to! :)