I started doing leatherwork over 35 years ago...

I began by doing my own tack repairs, found that I liked working with leather, and kept at it. I expanded and did custom orders for individuals and associations awards.

In our shop you will find tools and equipment from some of the best modern makers available and even more antique tools still being used. I have been blessed to know a few older makers who taught me about the old tools and showed me how to use them. Many of the tools are not made anymore or patterns and materials have been changed. Several years ago I started selling a few extra leather tools I had accumulated. I eventually got to the point where I just couldn't devote the time needed for both leather work and leather tools anymore. I made the decision to stop taking orders for leatherwork and concentrate on the tools primarily. My wife Rundi retired and is doing some leatherwork, taking classes at the shows, and having a blast. She also helps with the tools when I get her away from using them. 

I find a lot of satisfaction in refurbishing a vintage tool and getting it back to work. Some of these tools are 150 years old or better and others are made by the finest toolmakers today. When I pick up and use a knife that was made in the same shop at the same time as Jim Bowie's original knife reportedly was, I can only think "How cool is this?!". I have sent tools made before the Civil War to apprentice makers to use in learning the trade today. There aren't a lot of trades where there is that kind of transcendence of generations. I have bought and sold tools all over the world. With many of these tools I have the experience of using them. I can help you with tool choices based on my experience, personal preferences, and experiences of other makers I respect. 

-Bruce Johnson


For a little bit more about me, please watch this podcast done by my friend Steven Van Plew, and check out his other podcasts and videos as well!

More About Me

I had an old friend who taught me a lot about tools. He had been in the trade his whole life and knew handtools and uses. Some of my best times were sitting with him and he'd say "Did I ever show you how to do this?" or "Did you ever try one of these…
Here you will find samples of the leatherwork I have personally made. I am posting these as a means of showing technique and hopefully providing inspiration for your work. Please note that I no longer take custom leather orders.
I've shipped vintage leatherworking tools from one corner of the planet to other and thought it might be fun to share a map that shows the locations that these tools have gone to.