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This will be a notebook cover. I measured and cut, and then went around the edge with a groover and then the stitching wheel to mark where to punch the holes.  I punched a lot of holes.

After casing the leather (carefully wetting it so it gets soft and will take imprint) and tracing the design, I tooled it in with punches and mallet, and then rubbed the whole piece with coconut oil to keep it soft.  Coconut oil has a pretty low melting point–it turns to liquid in your hand–and solidifies rapidly again as it cools (the whitish gunk). After the leather dries, I will use a heat gun (carefully) to re-melt the oil and then wipe off the excess.  Then comes dyeing the leather, putting a finish on it, sewing the lining in, and burnishing the edges.

And no, coconut oil is not one of the “normal” things you would treat the leather with, but it’s what I have until I buy some neatsfoot or linseed oil.

I will not likely get promoted this FY, so I should be able to use this cover for a while.

For the curious, the aforementioned measuring, cutting, punching (of holes), casing, tracing, tooling, and rubbing ran me about the length of The Dark Knight up until Harvey kidnaps Gordon’s family.  I wasn’t in any particular hurry, though.

Edit:  It turned out nicely.