LodgepoleLeather

Smartphone Cases, Bookmarks, Keychains, & More!

Reynoldsburg, Ohio

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Announcement    Keychains. Phone cases. Bookmarks. All lovingly handcrafted from genuine leather with Western-inspired designs & shipped from the Ohio Valley to you!

Announcement

Last updated on Feb 8, 2021

Keychains. Phone cases. Bookmarks. All lovingly handcrafted from genuine leather with Western-inspired designs & shipped from the Ohio Valley to you!

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Matthew Allen

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Matthew Allen

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Average item review
5 out of 5 stars
(323)
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Quality 56 Shipping 42 Customer service 23

About LodgepoleLeather

Sales 1,686
On Etsy since 2014

Inspired by the West. Loved everywhere.

It all began with a keychain.

On a warm June Saturday in 2010, my family took me and my younger sister to a local Pioneer Day festival. I was eleven years old, and was enjoying the summer as any eleven-year old should. As my family and I strolled among the various booths at the festival, we met a number of people demonstrating vintage trades and skills that were practiced in pioneer days. A lady churned butter and offered samples to passerbys as another woman demonstrated how an antique apple peeler worked, sending spirals of peels cascading onto the grass. I was intrigued by these booths, but it was a different demonstration that really caught my attention. An older couple sat behind a long table with a massive amount of handmade leather knife cases, holsters, and cell phone cases. I had never seen much leatherwork before, and the three-dimensional detail in these creations as well as the smooth feel and earthy aroma of the leather totally captivated me. The man at the booth offered to let me hammer a single stamp into a leather keychain, and I gladly accepted.

A few months later, I was in a local craft store when I spied an inexpensive beginner's leathercraft kit. Remembering the leather goods at the Pioneer Day festival, I decided to purchase the kit and try my own hand at a few simple projects. The kit was very basic, containing only six different metal stamps and some pre-cut leather parts. Nevertheless, I enjoyed the experience and decided that I wanted more.

I discovered that there was a leathercraft store located less than half an hour from my home. Excitedly, my mom and I drove to the store in search of more supplies. I purchased a granite slab for hammering the leather and some other important tools and eagerly started to make new projects. As I gradually improved my leathercrafting skills, I began to wonder, "could I start a business selling these projects?"

Two years after I bought my first leathercraft kit, I went on a camping trip with my family to Wyoming. I was impressed with all of the Western scenery, particurarly the large forests filled with Lodgepole Pines. In my mind, the Lodgepole became a sort of icon of the rugged beauty of the American West. I decided that if I was going to start a leathercraft business, there could be no better inspiration than the West and no better symbol than the Lodgepole Pine.

Later that same year, I began preparing to exhibit a selection of leather bookmarks, keychains, and assorted other items in a local craft fair. I was excited to try my hand at selling face-to-face and to see what other people thought of my creations. To my elation, the craft fair was a success. Lodgepole Leathercraft was up and running.

Over the next few years, I exhibited in several other craft fairs. Interest was fair, but I began to get the impression that I needed to make my products available to a much wider audience in order to find more people who were really passionate about my designs. Naturally, I turned to the internet and began designing an Etsy shop. For about a year, I planned and made arrangements. And in 2014, I launched LodgepoleLeather on Etsy.

Before long, I started receiving a steady trickle of orders. I labored at developing new products, and though most of these products never really caught on, my line of leather iPhone cases rapidly became the flagship product of my fledgling business. I opened my shop to international orders and found that a significant number of people outside of the United States liked my work, too.

When I became a full-time college student in 2017, Lodgepole Leathercraft moved with me to my dorm room. Nowadays, when I'm not studying, sleeping, or talking with friends, you can find me making Galaxy cases and bookmarks at my desk, which I've repurposed into a leathercraft studio. The space is small, but it serves the purpose, and there's no job on campus I'd rather have than making leather goods.

My story is one with a beginning but no ending. Five years ago, I would have never guessed that Lodgepole Leathercraft would grow like it has. And I have absolutely no idea where it will take me during the next five years. But I'm completely okay with that. There's something beautiful about traveling to a destination that I can't see just yet. For now, I'm content to keep handcrafting leather bookmarks, keychains, phone cases, and more - just like I've done from the beginning.

Shop members

  • Matthew Bryce Allen

    Owner

    Howdy! I'm a follower of Jesus, a college student, and a leathercraft artist who lives in the beautiful Ohio Valley. I discovered leatherwork at age 11, and my love of all things leather hasn't lessened a bit since then.

Shop policies

More information

Last updated on Apr 8, 2020
Frequently asked questions
I need something customized. Can you do that?

Yes! Nearly every item from Lodgepole Leathercraft can be customized if you wish. Minor tweaks to the design can be done for no additional charge, while customizations like adding a name typically add a $3 per item upcharge. If you want something customized, send me a quick Etsy message before you order for approval. :)

How do I take care of my leather item?

The number one rule of caring for a Lodgepole Leathercraft item is to not get the leather wet! We cannot be held responsible for any dye bleeds, discoloration, or other damage to leather items or other property that occur due to exposure to water. If your leather item does get wet, do not try to blot the leather. Instead set it aside until the water is completely dry.

My leather item looks a bit darker than it did when I first got it. Is that normal?

In short, yes. Leather will naturally darken and change colors somewhat over time. Don't be concerned, it's just a mark of a natural material!

Can you stamp something on the back of my item?

Sadly, no. Leather has a grain side (stampable) and a flesh side (non-stampable). Any "leather" (say, on a storebought belt) that appears to have two smooth sides is actually bonded leather, which is basically the leather version of plywood with two artificial plastic-y grain sides that will eventually wear.

I need my custom logo or image engraved on an item. Is that possible?

It’s not super practical for single-item orders, but if you’re placing a large order, I can order a super-detailed custom brass stamp with your logo and use that for as many items as you want! Feel free to reach out for more info and pricing information. (In most cases, I won’t charge you any extra fee for having the custom stamp made on orders above 25 pcs.)

Do you offer quantity discounts?

Yes - if the order's big enough. If you're ordering five keychains for your friends, that sadly probably won't cut it, but if you're looking to place a large order for events or wholesale purposes, I am always glad to work with you to meet your needs. :) I’ve worked with media companies, nonprofits, churches, and other groups to create custom-branded items that fulfill their needs.

Can you make [insert weird item that doesn't exist anywhere else]?

Possibly! I spend much of my time working with existing designs, but I am always happy to work with you to create other items when they’re feasible with my materials and equipment. Please let me know what you’re thinking and we’ll talk.