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There`s a land…

…there`s also a lot of poetry out there. Much of it I hate. A little of it I love, love, love.

I love Bren Simmers. I love Jim Carroll. I love Al Purdy. I love Lizzie Derksen. I love C.R. Avery and I love Tanya Davis.

belt and bag 003 (Medium)

I love Robert Service. My first encounter with him was in elementary school. There was an assembly in the gym one day. There may have a few other activities and orders of business as part of the event but all I remember is this – a grizzled old man with a white ZZ Top beard reciting The Cremation of Sam McGee while pacing back and forth at the front of the gym, hands behind his bent-over back, eyes narrowing and bulging as he spoke.

Belt and bag 036 (Large)

At the time I was kinda scared, but in subsequent years I came to realize the experience for what it was – the single most awesome thing to ever have happened to me at that school (or maybe a close second to Scholastic book fairs).

belt and bag 005 (Large)

I think it had some small part in my actually going north in 2006 and falling in love with everything and everybody up there.

I was thinking the other day, while answering interview questions for Halifax Crafters, about why I make the kind of stuff I do and my main intention is that everything act talisman-esque. Kind of a sartorial touchstone that serves to remind people of a certain place that`s loved or missed. A physical wearing of your geographic heart on your sleeve.

That said, this one`s for Yukon. Block-dyed leather. Hand-painted lettering. Tooled with laurel leaves. A big brass buckle. Waiting to be sized for someone who has been under the spell.

belt and bag 013 (Medium)

There’s a land where the mountains are nameless,
   And the rivers all run God knows where;
There are lives that are erring and aimless,
   And deaths that just hang by a hair;
There are hardships that nobody reckons;
   There are valleys unpeopled and still;
There’s a land—oh, it beckons and beckons,
   And I want to go back—and I will.




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Black licorice is disgusting….

…but I’m going to have to do up a few more licorice-whip-thin belts like this I think.

This plain black belt was made super small – only a quarter inch wide.

Good bye old SFTH swag! You were a good starter name for four long years.


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I hadn’t meant to take a week off posting. It just happened. Things piled up and then buried me and the thing I had to leave alone for a week was this.

But now I’m back and I have lots:

– I bought beautiful stones I don’t yet know how to set and came up with designs I don’t know if I’ll ever be able to cut.

– I have Crown Land logos and they’re just about killing me with awesome because Mike is a genius.

– I have some new belts and I have some new purses and I should have a completed ring or two if all goes well in Wednesday night’s class.

– I have a French exam tomorrow and a story to write about Salman Rushdie’s new book.

– I have a cut on my hand and one to match on my lip because the weather is so dry and cold my skin is just cracking left, right and centre.

This doesn’t look that deep but it was one of those that makes you feel like you’re made of plasticine because it’s so deep that when you check it out from the side, it looks like a huge woodchip of skin has been axed out of your finger and you can’t understand why (if you actually have bones and organs and blood vessels) you can’t see some of that in the cavernous cut. It makes me feel like this toy. Did you ever play with this as a kid?

Anyway I don’t mind that much because I love the cold and I love the finished piece that grew out of the work that split both my hand and lip.

A belt for one of Hamilton’s roller girls.

Maril = Marilyn. As in, the-bombshell-Monroe.

Flowers and swirls for a love of country.



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It’s a Cinch

Another water buffalo belt…

I’m no guy, and I have done zero market reseach to back this claim, but I feel like this is the black belt of choice for 100% of guys. It’s thick and tough so you can treat it like a hammer. It’s soft and pliable so you don’t have to deal with it being too rigid and sticking way out when you sit down. It’s got a matte finish (unlike so many shiny black belts out there for guys) so you don’t look like you should be hanging out with these dudes.

Plus it’s made of water buffalo? That sounds prehistoric and awesome.

This one is going to make its way into the shop over the weekend.

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Old English

A custom belt done saddlery style – with a tab of leather behind the buckle. Just a touch larger all the way around so it frames the brass.

You can’t see it so well from this angle, but the extra leather is visible head-on.

Made of a dark chocolate brown leather.

Tomorrow I’ll show you a pair of earrings I worked on today – they’re going in the shop first thing in the morning.

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