March 24, 2014

Leather Coasters


DIY Leather Coaster

Mandi over at Vintage Revivals has ignited a leather obsession within many of her readers, and I for one am happy to further the trend. This tutorial is one of the simplest I've ever done, and can be taken in soooo many directions. I'm currently working on a brown leather southwestern patterned set as a gift, because, really, who doesn't love leather and need coasters? 


You need:
  • Leather -  I purchased a lovely scraps package from Michael’s. It was $6 for a pound, and I ended up with some really beautiful colors, including the lavender I used in this tutorial,  periwinkle blue, yellow, brown, and black. The leather you use for this project can be soft (suede) or smooth (actual processed leather), but if it is soft, it should have really short fibers. Longer textured suede will be hard to paint precisely.
  • Cork – you can buy sheets from Wal-Mart and most craft stores. It needs to be thin enough to cut with scissors, but not too thin. Ideal size is ¼ of an inch or so. Update: Just the other day I found out Michael's sells rounds of cork for this sort of thing...
  • Paint – I used fabric paint and a gold glass enamel. I chose the enamel because it “air cures” after a certain period of time to become water resistant, and is much more metallic and pretty than gold fabric paint. No matter what you choose, it should be air curable, that is, don’t select a fabric paint or enamel that has to be cured with heat/iron/whatever. Regular craft paint won't work because it is always susceptible to water, even after drying. The fabric paint I used is water resistant after 72 hours, and the Martha Stewart enamel is completely water resistant after 21 days.
  • Scissors
  • Glue – I used Aleene’s Fabric Fusion and it worked amazingly. 
  • Mod Podge - I used the matte finish. 
  • Ruler + Pencil or Chalk. If you’re using dark leather, you’ll want to use the chalk. I cut a piece in half with scissors so I’d have a really narrow edge and cleaner lines.


DIY Leather Coasters


Step One

Start by cutting four circles out of the leather and cork. I used an abnormally large glass as a stencil.


Step Two

Next, glue the leather circles to the cork, and place them under weight to dry. It’s important that they’re under pressure for the entire time they dry because if they aren’t, the edges will curl up slightly and they’ll be uneven.

DIY Leather Coaster

Step Three

Now you can paint! I stuck with geometric patters. For the hexagon, square, and circle patterns, I used stencils. For the triangle pattern, I went through the same process that’s used for the West ElmKnock-off Jewelry Box, but I made the triangles taller than they are wide. 



Step Four

The last step is to seal the raw cork edges with Mod Podge, which will prevent it from further crumbling. Paint a fairly thick layer around the outer rim - there's no need to seal the bottom - while avoiding the leather. 


That’s it! They’ll need plenty of time to dry and “air cure” (generally 72 hours – 21 days, depending on the paint you choose), but other than that it’s a super simple tutorial. Happy crafting!

Make your own leather coasters

diy leather coaster


Update:

I've now been using my coasters for several weeks, and they are holding up GREAT! I had a cup that was leaking water, and one of the coasters ended up soaked. I was worried it'd be too much moister for the paint or glue to stand up against, but neither one failed, and it dried out just fine. The paint is as perfect as the day I painted them, and the glue doesn't seem to be going anywhere. I'd call this a win! Also, the photos don't really do the pretty sparkly gold enamel justice. Just sayin'. 


This post was featured on Flamingo Toes and SohoSonnet.




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23 comments:

  1. These are awesome! Thanks for linking up at Link'n Blogs. I shared on Put A Bird On It's FB page. :)

    xo
    Daniela
    http://iputabirdonit.blogspot.com

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  2. These are fantastic. I love them.

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  3. Replies
    1. Thank you, I'm happy you liked it. :)

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  4. I love these! I hate the coasters I currently have so I need to add these to the to make list.
    PS I found you from Flamingo Toes

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    1. I'm so glad you found them inspiring. I hope you share pics once you're done!

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  5. Im in love! These are amazing! I am featuring them on Link It Or Lump It tomorrow morning......

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  6. I LOVE these! So, so cool! Thank you so much for linking up at Thursday STYLE :) Just pinned and shared on FB!

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    1. Thanks for another great party, and thanks for sharing!!

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  7. What a creative idea! I love how you painted them too! Thank you for sharing them with us! ~Tammy

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    1. Thank you Tammy, and thanks for stopping by!

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  8. these are super cute and classy. i'm pinning!

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  9. Super cute, I love the designs you painted on these!

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    Replies
    1. Thanks Sara! The possibilities are endless, which means they truly can be personalized :)

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  10. Gorgeous, I just might have leftover vinyl from my daughter's and sons' Easter outfits (I'm making a faux leather shrug and bow ties). Love the geomotric coasters!

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  11. And I forgot to add I'm following you from the Link'n blogs link party and pinning to my dream house... board

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    Replies
    1. Using leftovers from another project is a great idea! There's no sense in letting it go to waste. Thanks for stopping by + sharing!

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