Traditional leatherwork *
Teacher: Kristina Rajando
Kristina Rajando is a lecturer of traditional leatherwork at Viljandi Culture Academy department of Native Crafts. One of Kristina's main fields of research is environmentally friendly home-tanning using traditional methods. In relation to that she has led the Estonian Folk Art and Handicraft Union's assigned theme of the year "Made of animal". Kristina has also put together a number of publications and presented her work at various exhibitions.
Leather is one of the oldest materials humans have used. We have learned how to influence this material according to our needs and aesthetic preferences. For hundreds of years, craftsmen have known how to make bottles out of leather and how to process them in order to make them watertight. Craftsmen have used corrugation techniques to create new forms and shapes and have been able to change the qualities of leather - from soft to hard, from light to dark, etc.
In the theoretical part of the course, we will get acquainted with historical and traditional ways of home-tanning raw hides with plants and how to use other handy materials to manipulate already tanned hides. As a practical outcome, using historical-traditional techniques we will make:
- a leather bottle (sewing leather, shaping, working with beeswax);
- bracelet (corrugation technique, darkening);
- a clip for a keychain or a necklace, etc (cutting leather, heating).
The participation fee includes the plant-tanned hide, needles, thread, beeswax, cork for the bottle, tanning substances. This workshop is suitable for beginners.