Tuesday, 12 July 2011

Home-made Squirrel buckskin and pouch.

During the wild food course last year, I skinned and butchered  a squirrel, and we cooked him up over the fire. Very nice it was too. I saved the hide, and popped it salted up into the freezer.

I finally got it out last week to preserve it and try my hand at Tanning. First of all I scrapped it free of remaining flesh and then the epidermis layer.

Lacking the brains (quiet at the back there!) I made a solution of 2 fresh eggs and two heaped tablespoons of egg mayonnaise,  rubbed it into the scrapped hide well and popped it into a plastic bag overnight.

Unfortunately the hair slipped. I thought this would not happen until a couple of days in water. Well, I just thought I'd carry on as I had got this far, so removed the hair, and started to dry out and work the skin for a few hours until soft and flexible.

Then a smoking session over some old horses hoof fungi. I've loads of these lying around and these had decayed so were just the thing as I was lacking in punk wood.

As I had been working it, I folded it over and it lent itself to a small pouch without hardly any removal needed, so trimmed it up and made a simple money bag, with some linen thread. The pull cord is 4 strands of the thread twisted up into cordage.

I just need to make a wooden bead for securing the pull cord.
A lot of work for a small piece, but interesting to do and hopefully a long lasting pouch with a story.

Paul :)