Lasers ‘N Leather

Here’s something we’ve never tried before: using the laser cutters to cut leather.  One of the most time-consuming parts of leather-working is cutting out the shapes and punching the needle holes.  Oh the tedium.  But with laser cutters, all of that is automated.  Watch the video below to see how the laser-cut templates were sewn together.  To see how we made templates, go here.

Prepping the templates

To prep the leather to be cut, we took a picture of Tamara’s existing paper templates on a dark background and imported it into Adobe Illustrator.  Below, you can see the process using a differently-shaped leather template.

Picture of paper template

Using the image trace tool, we converted the picture into a vector shape.

Template outline

We used the path offset tool set to the correct seam allowance to create a shape within the template.  We set the outline of that inner shape to be an dashed line with 2mm dashes with 3mm gaps.

Template with seam allowance

This file was uploaded into the laser cutter and within minutes, the leather template was cut with holes punched for the stitching.  Et voila!