Tough in Camouflage | Shop the Look
Find some inspiration for your next project! In this edition of Shop the Look: a complete set comprising dog leash, collar and matching bracelet based around the theme "Tough in Camouflage".
Making a dog leash
I decided to use a camouflage print cord to make this dog leash look really cool. A nubuck leather handle and the antique brass coloured accessories complete the look.
For the leash in this set I have used 10 mm Camouflage cord in PPM from the dog leash cord section.
Nylon and PPM leashes feel different in the hand. Whichever is more comfortable to use really depends on your personal preference.
Dog leash rope or normal PPM rope?
Items from the dog leash section sit comfortably in the hand and look more luxurious than standard 10 mm PPM ropes. This is because sheaths of the dog leash ropes are more finely woven (48-strand) than sheaths of the standard 10 mm PPM ropes (16-strand).
I therefore prefer to choose a cord from the dog leash category, even though standard PPM cord can be used as well.
Choosing a snap hook and O-ring
You need a snap hook or carabiner to attach the leash to the collar. Here, I went for the 85 mm antique brass snap hook. This hook has a breaking strength of 338 kg, so is more than strong enough for the dog for which this leash is intended.
The other end of the leash is attached to the leather handle using a 20 × 4 mm O-ring.
Whipping of the leash
To finish the leash off, I decided to use the whipping technique. I chose Paracord Type I in the colours Caffè Latte, Olive Drab and Branch Brown for this. I deliberately chose Paracord Type I, as it is slightly thicker than micro cord. As this cord is somewhat thicker, the whipping pattern is clearer.
First, however, I stitched the cords together, because braiding alone is really not strong enough. I chose white nano cord because it is thin, smooth and strong.
Then the whipping itself begins. First, I attach the whipping cord to the dog leash cord, to prevent it from sliding. I chose to use the '3 Strand Ringbolt hitching' pattern for the whipping.
I finished off the whipping on both sides using 1 mm green Linhasita thread. Linhasita comes in a range of lovely colours. It can also be used to create beautiful stitching in contrasting colours on your leather creations. As the thread is lightly waxed, it slides through the leather easily.
Nubuck leather or greased leather for the handle?
For this set, I went for 20 mm light brown nubuck leather, rather than the more familiar greased leather. This type of nubuck leather is not dyed totally evenly, giving it a natural, vintage appearance. Like greased leather, nubuck is supple and is pleasant to hold.
I generally find 20 mm to be a comfortable width for the handle for larger dogs, and 15 mm for average or smaller dogs.
I have also partially braided the nubuck leather. This works just as well using this leather as greased leather. By making lengthwise cuts in the leather that are just a bit longer than the width of the leather itself, you can pull the leather through and you get this braided look. You can use sharp pincers or a chisel for cutting.
Extra ring on the handle
I also wanted to add a ring onto the handle, so you can easily hang the leash around your shoulder if you're out walking somewhere where the dog can run loose.
The ring I used here is a 5 mm brass ring, but a 3 or 4 mm ring would work just as well. The breaking strength is less important here, as the dog will not be attached to this ring.
You might add a pendant onto this O-ring for decoration. Here, I went for a Type III diamond knot with beaded ends.
Finishing off with end caps
I finished off the ends of the cord using 10 mm antique brass end caps. The end cap fits very snugly over the 10 mm cord.
This is why I make the cord end as thin as possible using a thin cord and a gas burner, so that the end cap slides smoothly over the cord. The video shows how this is done.
To secure the end cap in place, I put 4 drops of Loctite into the end cap before sliding it over the rope.
Collar with adapter
For the matching collar, I chose the same 10 mm dog leash cord as for the leash. But a knotted collar using Paracord Type III in matching colours would also look great.
Running through the centre of the collar I used a 10 mm Dark Olive twisted cord as a neat accent. This is also finished off with 10 mm end caps.
Here I used micro cord for the whipping. This whipping is thinner and therefore more pleasant for the dog.. Whipping allows for an infinite variety of colours. I chose Hazelnut Brown, Caffè Latte and Olive Drab. I also let the green Linhasita thread put in another appearance here.
I made an adjustable leather adapter as the closure of the collar. I used 25 mm nubuck leather for this, to match the leather handle on the dog leash.
The antique brass belt buckle with 25 mm feed-through connects the two sections of the adapter. The belt buckle dimensions are 55 × 34 mm, which is fine in this case as the collar is meant for a slightly larger dog.
The leather is too thick for these buckles, however. Hence why I thinned out the two bottom layers of the leather, so it nevertheless fits through the buckle.
I sewed the leather for the collar by hand using leather thread, to make it strong as well as smooth. To make the perforations for the sewing, I use the 4-prong leather punch. You can use the spindle press to make perforations for the adjustable part, but you can also use a 3.5 or 4 mm leather punch.
The snap hook of the leash can be attached to the ring on the adapter. I went for a 25 × 4 mm D-ring here, as this should be strong enough for slightly larger dogs.
You can also attach extra decoration to this ring. Here, I used a ribbon and slider beads from my own craft box.
Matching paracord bracelet
To match things entirely with your dog, you might also want a lovely matching bracelet. This is made from Paracord Type I in Caffè Latte, Moss Green and Branch Brown. As closure, I used a 13 mm Knottology buckle. The knot is the 3 Color Snake Belly.
Enjoy your walks!