Did you want to be a pirate when you grew up? Do your kids still hold on to that dream?
While that career path may not be viable nowadays, you could certainly achieve the look with a simple leather craft. Make your own leather eye patch in an afternoon and raid the pantry that evening!
Vegetable Tanned Leather (4-5 oz, leather scraps will work as well)
¼” Deerskin Lace (or leather cord, but the deerskin lace is really soft and comfortable)
Utility Knife or Scissors
Leather Dye (optional)
Take your leather and trace your eye patch template onto it. Use your utility knife or scissors (you’ll want some heavy duty scissors for this), and cut out your patch.
Next, we’re going to wet mold your patch so it has a concave shape to it so that it sits over your eye comfortably. You’ll need a bowl or cup of water.
Submerge your patch fully until the leather takes on a darker tone. Once the leather is wet, you’ll start molding it with your fingers and thumbs.
Press it into your palm to achieve a bowl-like shape. Hold it to your face to make sure the shape works for you. When you’re happy with it, you’ll need to let it dry.
I used a mallet, but you could make yourself a ball of paper or use a baseball to drape the shaped patch so that it maintains its shape while drying.
When the leather is dry, the color will return back to the natural shade you started with and hold it’s shape when picked up.
Take your dried leather, and mark where you will cut or punch the hole for your leather lace. If you don’t have a hole punch, you can simply cut a slit with your knife in the same spot to work your lace through later.
If you’ve decided to dye your eye patch, this will be a great time to do it! Apply your dye with a dauber in nice even coats. Be sure to apply it to the edges.
Once it’s dry, you’ll want to buff it with a dry, soft cloth. As you can see, even once dry, the dye can leave behind pigment. Since this will be sitting on your face, you’ll want to make sure you’ve buffed any excess color off!
With the dye done, you can attach your deer lace.
Thread the lace through the hole you made in the patch earlier. Pull the lace about an inch through.
You’re going to take your lightweight leather punch and punch a hole on the longer length of lace. If you do not have a punch, you could again use your knife to cut a slit in the center of the lace.
Pull the short end of your lace through the hole you just punched. This will create a bleed knot that attaches your lace to the eye patch. Repeat this process on the other side of your leather with another lace.
You can now put your eye patch on by tying the laces behind your head. Trim any excess off, unless you like the look of flowing lace!
This patch could be tooled, stamped or painted if you wanted to add some more details. However, this simple DIY leather project will definitely add some realism to your halloween costume.
Add some more realism with some leather bracelets or leather pouches to store all your plunder.
Thanks so much for reading and be sure to check out some of our other blog posts for more projects or some Leather 101.
We would love to see what you make! Be sure to share your eye patch with us on social media. Simply tag us with #theleatherguymn to show off your work. We may even share it on our page!