Panthera Tigris Tigris
Hey there! The name’s Kaj, but you can also call me BigCat! Born and raised in Texas, my first experience with leatherworking was back in boyscouts. I was tasked to create a pocket knife sheath during a day camp activity…and I feel terrible for the cow that mine was made out of. After turning the pieces to mush, I vowed never to touch the craft again.
Fast forward to 2015 and working a grueling kitchen job, I wanted to gain a hobby that had me working with my hands. A midsummer visit to the nearest renaissance festival piqued my interest in leathercraft once more despite my past failure. And so I started collecting leathercrafting tools. Since then, I’ve had numerous projects and ideas come to mind and I hope to share what I create with you here!
Here at BCDC, handcrafted accessories made with care and quality is my top priority. I want to make sure you look your best, and that your piece was made for you, personally ?
Frequently Asked Questions
So what all do you actually do?
Pretty much, the only things I don’t do when making my pieces are making the leather itself and the hardware. The cutting, carving, tooling, braiding, burnishing, dying/staining, are all done by my two hands. Any stitchwork is all handsewn, any filigree punchwork designs are knocked out one-by-one with tool and maul.
Is this all real leather?
Yep! I use 100% real leather and fur on the pieces. Cow is the predominant type of leather I use; deer, bison, sheep, and or goatskin may be used for other specific projects. The fur I use is rabbit. The cow hides are a byproduct of the meat industry in Brazil, as are the rabbit pelts over in Spain. Rabbit is a common menu item over there and so instead of letting the rest of the animal go to waste, they repurpose it and salvage the fur. I find this course of action to be commendable as the animal hasn’t been slain for one singular purpose and rest disposed of. Waste not, want not.
Would you ever consider using faux leather or fur?
Unfortunately, no. The varieties I have looked through in the past didn’t meet personal quality standards and so I don’t feel comfortable offering them as an option. Faux fur may be considered in the future, but it’s unlikely. I apologize for the inconvenience.
I want to get a piece from you and have it be made out of white leather! Is that possible?
It depends! If we’re creating a collar or set of cuffs and want the liner to be white, then yes, that’s possible! If you want the actual straps to be white.. that’s a different story. Due to the process that vegetable tanned leather goes through (what my main leather pieces and straps are made of), they cannot be dyed white. The same can go for much-lighter shades of colors as well, unfortunately. You can always darken leather with dyes, but you can’t lighten them. That said, never be afraid of asking anyways!
Another way around this is to paint the leather white (or whatever specifically light color). With the color applied to the top of the leather versus being absorbed into it (paints versus dyes/stains), there is a chance that the paint could be worn or scratched off with time and use, so that should be considered when choosing colors for commissioned pieces.
How long will it take you to complete my order?
Once payment has been made in full, construction can take roughly 2-4 weeks. Depending on what all is also in the works, it may go quicker or longer. I’ll let you know if I’m dealing with delays and if the piece is going to take longer than expected. That said, I’ll do my best at keeping you up to date on how progress is going on your order with screenshots and such. You can also tune into my twitch channel during my streaming sessions as well and see me work live! I always enjoy the company ?
How long is my order going to take during shipping?
So far when sending out packages, domestic US shipping has taken anywhere from 3-7 days. International shipping has taken roughly 1-2 weeks, but may take longer at times due to customs. Once a package is in the post’s hands, I’ll always make sure to send you the tracking number and update invoices to show the tracking info there as well.
**Due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, shipping times may take longer than estimated. Treat your postal workers kindly, they’ve been through a lot**
So I’ve bought one of your pieces, how do I take care of it?
That’s one of the great things about leather goods, it doesn’t need too much care to keep it looking and feeling great! All of my pieces have clear top-coats that help make all pieces liquid-resistant. This said, it doesn’t make them liquid-proof. I highly recommend never getting any wares soaked or submerged in liquid (shower, bath, pool, etc). This can damage the leather as well as any fur that may be part of the piece too.
If you spill something onto the piece, wipe down with a clean cloth asap and let air dry. If a sticky residue has been left over on the leather, a wet wipe can be gently used to remove the debris, then let the piece air dry.
If your piece has fur implemented in it, and it’s become a bit greasy, you can dust cornstarch or fine sawdust and gently rub that into the fur, letting it sit for at least a few minutes. Take a hand vacuum at the lowest setting possible and carefully suck up the starch or dust. These two are used to absorb excess oils that may be present in the fur. Stains in the fur can be combated with mixing cornstarch and white vinegar into a paste, and rubbing that gently over the stain. Let it dry and then brush out of the fur gently.