The three main approaches to edge finishing are burnishing only, dyeing and burnishing, and painting. Each of these methods seals and protects leather edges and provides a professional-looking finish. Choosing what's best for your project depends on the type of leather, the application and your personal preference.
A rough or ugly edge can ruin the beauty of the overall piece. In this blog, I'll share some of my experiences avoiding ugly edges and introduce some leather edge tools that I consider essential.
As with many disciplines in life, if you get your foundations wrong, everything else that comes after is negatively affected.
So let's get started and talk about tools.
The edge beveler:
This tool, as the name suggests, bevels the edge on a cut piece of vegetable tanned leather.
There are two types of beveler, a straight cut beveler and a round cut beveler.
As the name suggests, a straight cut beveler uses a flat blade to cut the corner off your piece of vegetable tanned leather.
When you cut off the edges of your vegetable tanned leather with a round cut beveler, the finish is rounded off in one swift motion, making your edges much cleaner, especially for burnishing.
Choose high-quality leather
Whether you're making handbags, belts, or other leather goods, it's crucial to always choose high-quality raw materials. High-quality leather is easier to polish and less prone to burrs when processing edges. For different products, you can choose leather with an appropriate thickness to ensure the strength and flexibility of the final product.
So realistically, edge bevelers are used mostly on firm vegetable tanned leather and not chrome tanned leather.
Some chrome tanned leathers are compressed and finished in a way that makes them rigid and firm, very much like your common vegetable tanned leather.
So how do you know which leather can be beveled and which can’t? Simple, feel the leather and see if it offers a firm hand. If it does then it can likely be beveled. Another test is to see if you can dent the leather with a thumbnail. If it’s hard enough to hold a dent (or hard enough to hurt your thumbnail!) it should bevel well.
So how do you round the edges on soft or chrome tanned leather if you can't use an edge beveler?
Enter the edge creaser.
However, just like edge bevel, there is more than one type of edge creaser. You can refer to the blog:Electric Edge Creaser Vs Manual Creaser
You can refer to YouTube videos：
What makes edge creaser special is the concave dome between the creasing part and the guide.
This not only gives you a decorative crease line, but with heat also rounds the edge on soft leathers giving you a curved edge without having to remove any material with an edge beveler.
Soft leathers will conform to the round shape, however, firm leathers will resist compression even with heat. Most vegetable tanned leathers will only receive a crease line and will likely need an actual edge beveler if a rounded edge is desired.
Consider the needs of different leather products
Different leather products may require different edge treatments. For example, the edges of a handbag could use polishing techniques to give it a more shiny feel, while the edges of a belt may need more layering. Therefore, when working on edges, consider the purpose and style of the final product, giving it a unique personality.
Through exquisite edge treatment technology, we are not only polishing the product, but also presenting the beauty of craftsmanship. Leather edge tools are our go-to tool to achieve this, and by choosing the right tools and techniques, we are able to create stunning leather goods that showcase the excellence of craftsmanship.
In the process of pursuing excellence, let us remember that edge processing is not only a technology, but also an art, a persistence and pursuit of craftsmanship quality.