Firstly, I send my apologies for bringing you this blog entry late. I got back to the B&B last night after having chips for tea and I crashed out on the bed and only woke up cold at 3.53am this morning. What a muppet I am! 😀
So, yesterday was day 3 of my training. It was a tough day for my right thumb and wrist (bearing in mind I’m still harboring a wrist injury from Sunday’s fall off the horse), nevertheless I got on with it, there’s no time to complain and when I do become fully self employed I either work or don’t get paid so no rest for me; plenty of heat lotion and paracetamol seems to be doing the trick.Anyway, day 3 saw me stitch together one cheek piece onto the fittings that linked a jowel piece and a buckle chape. I then moved onto the throat piece which was to be stitched rolled. After making stitch marks on the inside of the leather I dampened it slightly to make it pliable to fold easily and then placed a piece of poly cord down the centre line which helps to form a nice roll (this is what is used in the piping of saddles). I then stitched this in place making sure the edges were tucked in as much as possible. Once this was done the edge was tidied up, sanded, dyed and finished on a wooden block, leaving a perfect shiny edge. I then linked the throat piece onto the buckle chape rings and stitched it into place, resulting in a half finished headcollar.
I then went on to prepare the back stay, folding, tacking then stitching it into place linking it to the middle ring (where we clip the lead rein onto) and the throat piece. Bear in mind this equals to three pieces of leather to stitch through and boy does it wreak havoc with your thumbs, they sure as hell need to toughen up to continue this trade. 😀 I then finished the back stay’s edges off to a nice shiny finish.
The day pretty much had run away with me by now and it was time to leave for the evening. I did however just manage to prepare the final cheek piece by tacking it in place ready to stitch today (Thursday), and take a final picture.
I envisage finishing the headcollar today a day ahead of myself, not because I’ve rushed it, just because I’ve managed to do everything I’ve been asked to do, and it be right first time round. Stitching hasn’t been perfect but after a brief test on some single leather yesterday with Mark and my B&B buddy looking over my shoulder, we came up with the conclusion that not only was I sitting with the large clam in the wrong position, but also probably due to my dodgy wrist I was moving my right elbow up and down too much to obtain a completely straight line of stitches. Soon as all three of us realised this I made a conscious effort to correct this even though it put more pressure on my wrist but the result was phenomenal on my stitching lines.
So after a hard day of stitching I figured I deserved a treat for my tea and fancied chips and curry sauce (small things please small minds and all that lol 😀 ). They weren’t the best chips I’ve tasted but they did the job. I got back to the B&B and crashed out. All in all I’d say I had a very good day.
See you again later this evening, Clair x