How to Make a Stamped Leather Keychain

Happy weekend! As promised, I’m following up on my stamped leather bracelet post with a tutorial on how to make a stamped leather keychain.

stamped_leather_keychain_tutorial

My husband and I taught a seminar today to a bunch of kids in their teens and early 20s. It’s about relationships, and we wanted to give them a sentimental takeaway. In my book, sentimental = DIY handmade, so I made these pretty bracelets for the girls.

stamped_leather_bracelet_36

And we decided to go with keychains for the guys.

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“Set apart” was our catchphrase for the seminar. We are asking the kids to set themselves apart from unhealthy behavior patterns and follow God’s plan instead. Hey, it’s worth a try, at least, right?

So, without further intro or explanation, here is the…

Stamped Leather Keychain Tutorial

Materials

I’ve copied this directly from my bracelet post.

  • 16 gauge aluminum wire
  • Leather lace cording (3/16 inch by 3 yards)
  • 6 mm jump rings
  • 4 mm jump rings
  • Tube beads (with wide opening)
  • Small split rings (keychain rings)
  • 1/16 inch letter stamp set
  • Metal hole punch (or awl and hammer)
  • Heavy and fine grit sandpaper
  • Hammer
  • Rubbing alcohol
  • Cotton balls
  • Painter’s tape
  • Needle nose pliers
  • Wire cutter
  • Regular scissors (not pictured)
  • Permanent marker
  • Ruler

Instructions

There are two parts to this DIY project.

  1. Stamp the metal
  2. Attach the metal to the leather

Follow the instructions on this post for prepping and stamping the metal. There’s no difference in the procedure. To attach the metal to the leather, follow these instructions.

1. First, cut a 4-inch strip of leather.

stamped_leather_keychain_1

My leather strip was a tad too wide for the beads I bought, so I had to hammer about two inches of the strip to make it thinner.

stamped_leather_keychain_2

See how the left edge of the strip is thinner?

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2. Slide the bead onto the leather strip (thin side first)…

stamped_leather_keychain_4

…and tie a knot on the thinner end.

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Place the metal strip where you want it to go on the leather strip (about 1/4-inch above the bead) and place a fine-tipped pen into the two holes on the metal, marking the leather. Since my strip was black, it was difficult but still possible to see the markings.

stamped_leather_keychain_6

Since my steel hole punch broke, I used an awl and hammer to punch holes in the leather. It worked pretty well! Simply place the sharp tip of the awl on the pen marking, and give the blunt end of the awl a few good taps with a hammer. Make sure to place the leather strip on a piece of wood to absorb the impact!

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And you get nice holes like these, which are perfectly matched to the leather strip.

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Align the holes of the metal strip with the holes in the leather, and use 6 mm jump rings to attach it.

stamped_leather_keychain_9

Make sure that one ring encircles the “top” of the leather strip and the other encircles the bottom. If they’re on the same side, you get a “hinge” effect like this pic (from the bracelet tutorial):

stamped_leather_bracelet_27

Make the keychain attachment using a 6 mm jump ring, a 4 mm jump ring, and a small split ring.

stamped_leather_keychain_10

Use the needle nose pliers to attach the rings in that order.

stamped_leather_keychain_11

And voila! You’ve got yourself a handy, sturdy, fashionable keychain!

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QUESTION OF THE DAY

Do you carry around a lot of keys and a bunch of keychains? Or are you a minimalist?

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