Comment fabriquer un porte-cartes en cuir artisanal ?

How to make a handmade leather card holder?

The luxury card holder alone represents elegance and minimalism. Designed for those who want to assert their style, it is a compact and practical accessory for transporting your personal effects, without weighing you down. Its small size makes it fit perfectly in your pocket or purse. Composed exclusively of leather, it will adapt to your outfit and give you a great look. In addition, the quality of the noble materials used in its design makes it a timeless accessory that adapts to all fashions. It is therefore no coincidence that card holders are brought up to date. Especially since cards are now ubiquitous in our lives (credit card, identity card, vital card, etc.).

We invite you to dive into the Valet de Pique universe to discover how a handcrafted leather card holder is made.

Handcrafted card holder

Discover the Valet de Pique card holder

What do you need to make a leather card holder?

Any craft creation dealing with leather requires a range of tools. In the same way as for the design of a wallet, the manufacture of a leather card holder requires: a mallet, a cutter, a burnishing agent, a ruler, leather glue, knocking claws, a compass, an edge rest, and thread.

It is also important to choose the leather used carefully. At Valet de Pique, we favor full grain vegetable tanned leather. This noble material brings a natural look to the card holder which will improve over time by becoming slightly darker and shinier, in the style of a vintage card holder.

card holder manufacturing

Realization of the leather card holder pattern

The first step is to make a sewing pattern. It is from the latter that the model of your card holder will be born. If you make your pattern on a computer, make sure that the proportions are respected when printing. Once printed, all you have to do is cut out the model from a cutter. For better rigidity and greater precision, we recommend gluing your pattern to thin cardboard. This task requires great precision and can therefore be complex. If you are a beginner or are not comfortable, know that it is quite possible to use premade pattern templates. However, using these patterns will reduce the originality of your card holder.

leather card holder pattern

Leather cutting

Your pattern is now built. It's time to transfer it to the leather. To do this, position your pattern on the skin and trace its silhouette. Ideally, you should use a cutting edge pen or a fine-tipped pencil (make sure the leather is clean before you trace). Then all you have to do is cut the leather with a cutter, following the lines neatly. You can rely on a ruler for line plots. The more precise and delicate the gesture, the cleaner the cut. Indeed, it is preferable to pass several strokes of the blade rather than to press insistently.

Note that if you have a symmetrical pattern, it is then possible to draw your pattern both on the smooth surface of the leather and on the back. Conversely, if your pattern is not symmetrical, we recommend that you opt for the smooth side.

card holder manufacturing

Discover the Valet de Pique card holder

Leather slaughtering, burnishing and dyeing

You have your leather pattern, it's time to embellish the edges. Indeed, by rounding the edges of the card holder and making them smooth, this facilitates the insertion of the cards in the dedicated slots. To do this, you have to "knock down" the angles using an edge protector. However, be careful to keep an identical angle for each edge so that everything is uniform.

Next comes the browning stage. Although this step is easily achievable, its process will depend on the leather chosen. If you have opted as Jack of Spades for vegetable tanned leather, then a burnishing is necessary. It makes it possible to seal the fibers of the leather at the level of the edges, and consequently, to give them a more aesthetic appearance. To do this, apply a browning agent to the slices you wish to brown, then rub vigorously and repeatedly with a linen cloth. So the slice should start to brown and become soft to the touch. If you don't have a browning agent, know that this step can also be done with water.

Conversely, if you have opted for chrome-tanned leather, burnishing will not be possible. Only the dye will make it possible to embellish the edges.

Gluing and sewing the leather card holder

leather card holder

Now that all the parts of the card holder are ready, all that remains is to assemble them. First of all, it is essential to draw the sewing lines on all the components (base and bottom of the pockets). You will agree that this step is necessary for the future. Then simply glue the sides of the different pockets to the dedicated locations using leather glue. However, to ensure that the bonding is successful, it is quite possible to tap at low intensity on the areas of glue using a mallet. However, when you glue directly on the grain of the leather (and not on the reverse), the glue may adhere less. To avoid this, it is essential to lightly scratch the smooth part of the leather in the places to be glued.

After a drying time of about ten minutes, you need to consolidate everything, make the card holder rigid. It is at this precise moment that the lines of seams will be of great use: they serve as a mark to drill the holes where the sewing thread passes. To obtain clean holes, the use of claw points and a mallet is recommended. All that remains is to sew the whole thing, preferably by hand, for better solidity and a neater appearance.

The card holder is finally assembled, it's time for the finishing touches. There is always time to brown the slices or cut down the angles. It is also an opportunity to correct the last imperfections, and potentially, to treat the leather if necessary.

Valet de Pique Leather Card Holder

Handcrafted card holder manufacturing

Discover the Valet de Pique card holder

As you will have understood, at Valet de Pique, we ensure that all of our products respect French know-how and 100% artisanal manufacturing processes. It is for this reason that our card holders are made in a family workshop located on the outskirts of Biarritz and managed by historical leatherworkers. Thus, each product is designed by hand with noble materials, which reflects the quality and uniqueness of our items.

Finally, the card holder is a great gift idea for both men and women. At Valet de Pique, we offer card holders in 3 colors (honey, chocolate and black) that go perfectly with a wallet, a school bag or a briefcase. Something to satisfy all tastes.

Back to blog