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Classes & Workshops

                 PROPOSED CLASSES BELOW, IF ALL GOES WELL!

SCROLL DOWN TO VIEW INDIVIDUAL CLASSES & WORKSHOPS

Check out and book Beginner, Open classes & workshops on specific projects in the

WORKSHOP & CLASS BOOKINGS tab on the left hand side!
 

ALL SATURDAY CLASSES COMMENCE AT 8.30 SHARP!!

Please note that any scheduled dates for future classes should be definite, but are subject to change, if need be.

INFO ON CLASSES

Leathercraft classes are held every Saturday morning from 8.30am SHARP -12.45pm, with "Beginners Classes" and "Optimum Open Classes" every month, along with specialty classes slotted in throughout the calendar year.

Included regularly are Belt/Dog Collar workshops and Carving & Tooling Workshops.  There are also regular Jandal making workshops (simple sandals or thongs) with Mario Dato.

  • Beginners Class teaches you the basic fundamentals of traditional leatherwork including tool uses and a tour of the store, introducing different leathers and what's available to you.  These 4 hour classes are $60.00 each.  Beginners to advanced are all welcome. Bookings for all classes are essential and can be booked individually, by the lesson.
  • Optimum Open Classes are the next best thing to private tuition (without private fees) and let you work on your specific project and you are guided step by step.  Max 4 students. They are $160 for 4 hours ($40/hour).
  • Its not mandatory to do the Beginners first, but it comes highly recommended!!!
  • Private Tuition is one-on-one training where you have the tutor all to yourself for maximum tuition. The rate is $60 per hour for one on one with Silvia Guerrera.
  • Room Hire rates are $15/hr but come with no tutor.  You must have a basic understanding of leatherwork and the classroom.

BEGINNERS

In these casual Beginner Classes you can learn to emboss (stamp), dye, seal, stitch and burnish edges on a simple item like a coaster, working on veg tanned leather. You get a tour through the store showing all the different types of leathers and exotics.  This fun class teaches you the basics that will carry you through all of your projects including tool uses and leather choices.
 
This class opens your eyes to what's available to you, and comes highly recommended. You only need one lesson to set you on your way.

      

OPTIMUM OPEN CLASS **

Maximum 4 students.  These subsequent classes can be any project you like (within reason) and you will be guided on the day.  This can include carving, bevelling and setting hardware like rivets, studs (baby dots), buckles and keepers, and new projects of your choice will be easy, like belts, journal covers, handbags, almost anything...

However, if you have ANY particular project in mind - perhaps using chrome tanned leather for a soft handbag for example, this is also achievable without the Beginners Class, and you will be guided on the day. Please note there are no sewing machines in the classroom.  All sewing is done by hand.
 

OPEN CLASS IMPORTANT INFO!

** PLEASE NOTE, IF YOU HAVE A PROJECT IN MIND, YOU WILL NEED A PATTERN.  AS WE ARE NOT PATTERN MAKERS, IT IS UP TO YOU TO DEVISE ONE, PERHAPS FROM AN OLD HANDBAG OR WALLET IF THAT IS WHAT YOU ARE MAKING. 
 
We do have some patterns and templates for leather projects, but best to check with us first.  Otherwise, make the pattern out of paper first, get your folds right, then transfer to cardboard.  Bring your cardboard peices in, and therefore you dont waste class time cutting cardboard.  A 5mm seam allowance works for just about everything!


Book Beginners or Open Classes HERE.         


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ALL WORKSHOPS REQUIRE:

  • Bookings are Essential

  • Payment in full is required in advance to secure your spot. Credit card, Direct Deposit or cash are acceptable.

  • A non-refundable 20% booking fee is applicable for cancellations less than 7 days prior to workshop. (Shoe workshops are less than 21 days prior to workshop.)

  • Closed in shoes are MANDATORY

PARKING: 

Parking on the grounds is strictly 2 hours.  Students for classes are required to park on the street.  Ample street parking is available on Saturday mornings.

 

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 BELT MAKING OR DOG COLLARS!

 
The principals of making belts or dog collars are the same, only one is shorter!  Learn the basics of how to get your measurements right, work through the steps in order and then decorate to your liking.

You'll be working on a pre coloured belt length and can add bling to decorate if you wish.  Your choice. 

                  

You will learn to correctly measure you belt length, bevel your edges and decorate to your liking.  You can practice on some scrap leather if need be.

Burnishing edges will finish off your master piece, including setting your buckle and hardware.  Loads of fun!

AND the same rules apply to dog collars.  Have the measurement of your dog's neck and off we go.

Supplied:
  • Belt length coloured in 1½" width (38mm) or similar sizing
  • Standard nickle plated full buckle, or half buckle and keeper.
  • Conditioners, edge finishes,
  • All tools
  • Please note:  At extra cost, brass, trophy and special buckles are all available in store, plus any extra conchos or embellishments or bling!
 Required:
  • IMPORTANT:  Please have the waist or hip measurement of the person you are making the belt for!  This is mandatory for the right fit!
  • Your imagination!
OR YOU CAN MAKE A CUSTOM DOG COLLAR

Have you ever wanted to personalise a collar for your dog, making it just the way you want?

In this workshop, you will walk away with your own handmade collar complete with extra hardware like conchos and studs if you wish. Your choice. 

            

Loads of options to choose from including brass hardware for dogs who enjoy the water.

Cost includes a 4-hour workshop, leather, standard buckles & hardware, and use of all tools & dyes.

Important!!  Please have your dog's neck measurement or an old collar to measure from.

(Please note that a basic dog collar will be completed in 4 hours, however, if extra embellishments & stitching are chosen, the project may not be completed in one day.)

Saturday 13th November 2021    BOOK HERE

Time:   8.30am SHARP to 12.45pm

Cost:    $75.00 for a 4 hour workshop

DID YOU KNOW?  You dont have to wait for this class.  You can make a belt or dog collar in any Open class.

Supplied:

Veg tanned strap in pre coloured leather

Hardware: nickle plated buckle & dee ring

Tools, Dyes & Conditioner

Extras:

Brass & chromed brass hardware available plus loads of conchos and embellishments to choose from.

Harness needles and thread if you're stitching.

Suede if you're lining

Required:

Your imagination!

Perhaps an old collar you'd like to replicate.

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MAKE A DICE POUCH (MONEY OR JEWELRY POUCH, OR WHATEVER YOU LIKE POUCH!)

 

Attention all D&D Players, Reinactors and Gamers alike!

 

Now’s the time to make your own unique but appropriate gamers dice pouch for your campaigns and gaming sessions.  Of course you can learn the skills and obtain the pattern to make this pouch to house anything you want!  The smaller of the ones pictured will be the pouch made in this workshop.

     

You will be using some brilliant goat nappa for the body of the bag with natural veg on the supporting panel to give your pouch stability. You will also be tooling the veg section with stamps of your choice, (with nothing too complex to make sure we get the pouch done in a one day session). Think of some cool design you might want to carve on the veg panel for the next one you make! 

You will learn how to stitch, set eyelets and create the drawstring effect to close the pouch tight.

When:  Saturday 11th December 2021  BOOK HERE

Time:    8.30am — 4.00pm

Cost:    $160.00 for a 6 hour workshop and your take home pouch

        Bring your lunch

 Supplied:

  • Chrome tan goat nappa for pouch body
  • Natural veg tan strip for support piece
  • Eyelets
  • Lace
  • Thread/needles
  • Beads
  • Glue/tape

 A small amount of tools are available in the Craftroom to be shared amongst all students.

Doing the Beginners course first would be an advantage, but not mandatory!

 

 
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CARVING & TOOLING LEATHER

Learn the basic skills of traditional tooling by carving with a swivel knife and using bevelling, background and decorative tools.  
Firstly, you will practice your carving and tooling skills on scrap leather, using a simple craftaid template, with long flowing lines, to get your skills up.
  
                           

Then we will work on a masterpiece from the multitudes of (more simple) Craft Aid templates that you can choose from, on natural veg tanned leather.
pictured above is a beautiful version, tooled by Peter Main, of the craftaid used in this class to help you learn about the tools used for traditional leatherwork.
 
You will learn how to handle a swivel knife, how deeply to cut, and then which sides of the lines to bevel to create shadow and dimension. Back grounding, modelling and pearshading come next to complete your basic training.
We will antique our work which will sit in the grooves and impressions and bring this piece to life.

When:  Saturday 24th July 2021           BOOK HERE
Time:    8.30am SHARP - 12.45pm
Where: Birdsall's workshop   
Cost:    $75.00 for a 4 hour workshop
 
DID YOU KNOW?  You dont have to wait for this class.  You can learn to carve in any Open Class.
 
Supplied:
Natural veg tanned leather piece
Craftaid template
Marble slab

Required:

Embossing tools (11): A104 Backgrounder / B702 Beveller / B936 small Beveller / C940 Camouflage / H907 Stop / Pear Shaders: P206 small smooth, P217 small checkered / S706 Seeder / U849 small Mulesfoot, V409 Veiner X501 Basketweave

Swivel knife

Modelling tool
Mallet or Maul
Edge creaser
Marble slab

Strop

Some tools will be available in the workshop to be shared amongst students.  Bring your own tools if you have them.

***WORKSHOP SPECIAL KIT***

Purchase a complete set of required tools, (normal RRP @ $225.00) for the super discounted price of $187.00!

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KANGAROO WALLET MAKING

Learn how to assemble your own wallet from scratch, with pre cut components out of the best skin to make wallets…...quality Kangaroo.

Roo has the rigidity, strength and firmness, whilst being very thin, which is perfect for wallet making.

You will be shown how to skive leather edges with the best handmade skiving knife on the market.

       

You will learn all skills required including creating your stitching margin, glueing, hole punching, stitching, burnishing, and trimming which will in turn make this compact wallet come to life. 

You will also have instructions to follow which come with our kits.  Learn tricks you may not have thought of, like how to stop your cards falling to the bottom of the wallet pockets, skiving the edges to get your wallet thin as possible and reduce bulk.

When:  TO BE ADVISED

Time:    8.30 SHARP— 4.30pm

Where: Birdsall’s Taren Point workshop

Cost:    $150.00 for a 8 hour workshop

Supplied:

  • Birdsall wallet kit with all components
  • Glues/tapes/gum
  • Edge creaser
  • Stanley knife*
  • Ruler (cork backed preferably)
  • Pricking irons 4 prong& singular*
  • Irish linen waxed thread
  • Harness needles x 2

Some tools will be available in the workshop to be shared amongst students but there may not be enough to share so please bring your own tools if you have them. 

If not, take advantage of the Workshop Special Tool Kit normally retailing at approx. $76.00 but discounted to $68.50

You get:

  • Pricking irons 4 prong & singular
  • Harness needles x 2
  • Edge creaser
  • Stanley knife
  • Scratch awl
  • Corked back ruler
  • Leather cement glue

 

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MAKE A PLAITED KANGAROO WHIP WITH BILL WEBB

Dates have been secured for April…..      (Course will be postponed if Covid restrictions tighten)

All skill levels can join one of Queensland’s finest plaiters, Bill Webb and learn how to plait a kangaroo whip over three days.

You will learn from scratch how to cut from the hide, skive the edges and plait around a core to create a beautiful, practical whip using quality hand stuffed Kangaroo leather.

Bill will take you through all of those processes with detailed explanations to produce some fine neat plaiting and what pitfalls to look for. When you prepare your lace, you will learn about proper lubricants whilst plaiting to keep your project smooth and flowing.  

     

When: TO BE ADVISED

Time:   8.30am SHARP — 4.30pm

Where: Birdsall’s Taren Point workshop

Cost:   $540.00 for a 3 day workshop & your take home Roo whip

Supplied

  • 1 x hand stuffed Kangaroo hide
  • Wooden handle
  • Lubricant

Required

  • Small sharp knife
  • Lacing fid
  • Bring your own lunch

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 MAKE A WESTERN EQUESTRIAN HORSE BRIDLE WITH HUGH BLOORE

 

Learn the techniques in this workshop to make and take home your own Barcoo style bridle complete with hardware

Join long time saddlemaker, Hugh Bloore for an intense day of learning and fun with an expert in the field. 

You will create your bridle from beautiful Australian skirting. (Reins are not included).

You’ll learn how to select, measure, cut, stitch, assemble and dress your leather bridle to take home as well as the skills to make another! 

This bridle will be secured with Chicago screws, which will allow you to change bits.

You will be stitching the browband to learn traditional stitching with an awl. 

       

When: Saturday 4th December 2021   BOOK HERE

Time:    8.30am SHARP — 3.00pm

Cost:    $230.00 for a 6 hr workshop with Hugh & your take home bridle

Required Tool List:

  • Stitching pony**
  • Edge Beveller**
  • Oblong punch** (not in workshop special)
  • Mallet**
  • Round or oval hole punch**
  • Ruler**
  • Overstitcher wheel (6 to 1”)**
  • Round knife**
  • Awl, diamond tip

 

**** WORKSHOP SPECIAL ****

Purchase a complete set of required tools, normally priced @ $190.00, for the super discounted price of $171.00

Supplied:

  • Skirting leather length
  • 2 x 1” O brass rings
  • 2 x ¾” swage buckles
  • 1 x 5/8” swage buckle
  • 8 x Chicago screws gilt in (1/4” or 3/8”)
  • 2 x harness needles
  • Braided nylon Mox waxed thread 0.8mm
  • Denim piece
  • Oil/dressing

** A small amount of the required tools are available in the Craftroom to be shared amongst all students. 

Extra tools can be purchased at Birdsalls, or take advantage of the “Workshop Special” tool set.

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INTRODUCTION TO PLAITING WITH OWEN HARTSHORN

 

Learn the intricacies of plaiting in this introductory workshop where you make this very cool hatband that demonstrates round, flat plait, gumnuts and turks heads!

Long time plaiter, Owen Harshorn has been plaiting leather for over 40 years.  Learn skills from the master to be able to handle 4.7mm lace, which makes it nice and easy for you to pick up.

You'll start with 4 strands, moving onto 6, completing round and flat plaiting.  Be patient to master your turks head and gumnuts, if Owen thinks you’re up for the challenge.

     

When:  TO BE ADVISED

Time:    8.30am SHARP — 3.00pm

Cost:    $115.00 for a 6 hour workshop and some take home masterpeices

           BRING YOUR LUNCH

Supplied:

 10 mtrs of 4.7mm lace

 Braiding clamp

 Braiding lubricant

Tools Required:

Sharp knife (Stanley, break off, etc)

Lacing fid

A small amount of items are available in the Craftroom to be shared amongst all students.

 

ONE-DAY JANDAL MAKING (LEATHER THONGS OR SIMPLE SUMMER SANDALS) WITH MARIO DATO

New dates available..... Back by popular demand!


Would you like to learn how to make, AND walk away with a brand new pair of custom made leather thongs (Jandals)?
Master Italian shoemaker, Mario Dato, who has over 50 years experience will show you how to cut, shape, dye and assemble some simple, comfortable footwear, namely leather thongs.  Different simple designs are permitted, subject to Mario's approval.

You need to email Silvia with your current thongs size, and make sure you have closed in footwear on the day, hair tied back and no loose clothing, as you will be using machinery in the workshop.

     
                                           
Cost is inclusive of:
Full days tuition
Use of all tools
Leather and components
Extra tools can be purchased at Birdsalls, or bring your own tools if you have them.

When:  To be advised
Time:    8.30am SHARP till 2.30pm
Where: Birdsalls workshop
Cost:    $140.00 for a 6 hour workshop and a pair of shoes!

 Closed in footwear (on your feet) is mandatory

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    ALL WORKSHOPS REQUIRE:

  • Bookings are Essential

  • Payment in full is required in advance to secure your spot. Credit card, Direct Deposit or cash are acceptable.

  • A non-refundable 20% booking fee is applicable for cancellations less than 7 days prior to workshop. (Shoe workshops are less than 21 days prior to workshop.)

  • Closed in shoes are MANDATORY

PARKING: 

Parking on the grounds is strictly 2 hours.  Students for classes are required to park on the street.  Ample street parking is available on Saturday mornings.

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NEED SOMEWHERE TO STAY?

New accommodation has been sourced at the nearby Caringbah Hotel which is literally only 5 minutes away by car, and boasts some very nice, affordable double ($118) or twin queen ($136) rooms at reasonable rates.  With your accommodation, you get a complimentary breakfast box, complimentary drink on arrival and 10% off your dining.  Some marvellous incentives to take a leather holiday!!

Please email your initial enquiry to Silvia

CARRINGBAH HOTEL - 9526 1166

THE STUDIO DOUBLE ROOM

Accommodates up to two guests with one double bed. 

Each room features air conditioning, TV, free Wi-Fi access, en-suite bathroom with walk-in shower, a bar fridge, and tea/coffee making facilities. 

Rooms are serviced daily. Complimentary breakfast box and drink included, and a 10% discount at the restaurant.

Monday to Thursday $ 108.00

Friday to Saturday $118.00

Sunday $108.00

THE STUDIO TWIN QUEEN ROOM

Features two queen beds, private ensuite, air-conditioning, digital TV, access to free Wi-Fi, and tea/coffee making facilities. 

Rooms are serviced daily. Complimentary breakfast box and drink included, and a 10% discount at the restaurante. 

Monday to Thursday $ 126.00

Friday to Saturday $135.90

Sunday $126.00

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