I miss preparing, creating, and writing the DIY post so much. What about you? If you are new on my blog, welcome and if you are looking for more DIY check out this page! But let’s get back to the point, I wanted to make something ‘easy’, small and learn something new. That’s what I found at Tandy Leather. Remember the gift I got myself from the previous post… it’s a DIY baseball kit!
What a coincidence… I wrote down the things I would love to learn during my stay in America about the American leather craft (it’s here if you’ve missed it). So far I’ve covered the technique to design and make your own Native American moccasins. But I still wanted to learn maybe some techniques to make an original leather American football, rugby ball or … a leather baseball. The latter is the topic of this DIY post! I found a kit but I think you could also make this yourself and find a core that would be suitable.
So what do you need:
- A Tandy leather baseball kit (not a sponsored post or anything but I just liked the kit). Which includes:
- 2 eight-ish-shaped pieces
- 1 needle
- 1 pieces or red waxed thread long enough to stitch the ball (6/7 times the length of the stitching holes you can make yourself)
- a core
Step 1: Aline the two identical pieces
If you don’t have the kit before you start the next steps you will need to punch the holes. The two pieces are identical and should, therefore, have the same amount of holes. Also, you should have a single hole on top of the bulbs and a single hole in the narrowest part of the pieces.
To align the identical pieces you should find the top hole and the holes in the middle, as shown in the image below. Loop the thread through the two pieces with the ends at the ‘good side’
Step 2: start on the baseball stitch
Since the kit only comes with one needle we will have to do one side first and then halfway we will switch to the other side. So choose one side, I choose to start with the right tread, crossover but come up from below through the first hole after the other side of the thread. Next, go the right part, crossover but come up from below, but skip one hole. Because that is the hole for the other side of the thread to go in.
step 3: continue until halfway
Continue crossing over, under and up through the holes until you are halfway. Now it is time to switch the needle to the other side of the thread. It should look something like the images below. Make sure you don’t pull it too tight already since you will need some space for the needle of the other side.
Step 3: creating the V
The most remarkable detail of the baseball stitch is ofcourse the V-shape. Now it is time to see whether we can create one as well. Again you go through the hole from below but up in the free hole, you skipped before. If you actually forgot to do this… you will need to start over. Also to make it look neater, try to check whether you should pass the other side of the V below or over it. So in the image below you see the right side of the V goos under the left side of the V.
Step 4: Continue this until halfway
You see, it’s not that hard. I think you will do a great job! And it’s fun don’t you think? Stitch by stitch it does look more like a baseball. Continue the process until you are halfway done.
Step 5: Insert the core
Before you close the leather bucket, you should not forget the core. Just place it in there, and you are good to go.
Step 6: Repeat step 2 to 4
Repeat the previous steps and pull the thread through the first hole you’ve used. Again at this time, you should not pull it too tight since you will have to go tough the holes on the other side with the needle.
Step 7: pull the loops tight
The result will look very messy and nothing like a professional baseball. That’s because we are not done yet. Loop by loop pull it tight and you will see it will also get a more rounded shape! I actually had to do multiple rounds to close all the gaps and make it look pretty. But in the end… you will have made your very own baseball! I like it!!
In this case, the leather was a natural veg. tan. So it will get a lovely patina over time but since it is veg tan you can also do some tooling, carving and dying. Make it your own little piece of art. Good luck and I hope you’ve enjoyed a pre-made kit being explained.