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When it comes to leathercrafting projects, we wrote the book on it for DK Publishing!

Original, unique designs to help with lifting and carrying your bicycle

Stunning handcrafted bicycle bags carry the essentials and turn heads!

Best-selling "commuter essentials" for making the daily commute easier

Lifetime leather bar wraps in five styles for every type of handlebar and bicycle

Our best-selling Original Travel Cribbage Boards has fans worldwide

Unique travel-sized classic games: dice, dominoes, cribbage

Free hand-drawn printable scoresheets, rules of play & puzzles

One-of-a-kind cribbage boards: driftwood, leather, and even a belt

Leather handles in 8 styles, 4 leather colors, and 3 metal finishes

Strong yet soft, durable and sustainable, no-bumps and no-bruises

Add a label to handles and pulls for superior organization

Flexible but sturdy, creative solutions to tricky problem corners

Wrap a Handrail in Leather with Walnut's Oswego Kit

We developed the Oswego Leather Wrap Kit for wrapping infinite lengths, such as a long bannister, handrail, or stairway railing.

Connect the Straps

Each strap length is limited by the size of the hide, but you can wrap any size of railing by simply attaching straps together during installation.

Looking down a set of blonde wood stairs with a black steel handrail wrapped in honey leather Oswego Leather Wrap Kits on a new custom home construction project in Arizona

Of all our wrap styles, the Oswego kit has the longest continuous piece of natural, vegetable-tanned leather we can cut from the hide. This minimizes the number of connections you have to make.

Connecting multiple lengths of the Oswego kit is easy to do using the (included) leather staples. Each kit includes the staples.

To connect / transition from one set to the next, you simply staple them together. The coils and the wetting/drying process hold the leather secure to the railing. In other words, the staples just hold it in place during drying and installation.

As explained in the instructions provided, we show how to hide this connection on the underside of the handrail. You simply use sharp scissors to cut the strap to length, so that the connection point will be on the back side of the bar during wrapping. 

Connecting multiple lengths together makes installation easier on a larger project. One very, very long leather strap is unwieldy to wrap and requires either excellent dexterity or two sets of hands. It can also be challenging to keep the entire length wet for the duration of installation. Plus, you can also put your work down and take a break! 

Strap connection options

Why staples? The leather staples we use have a very sharp, awl-like point that allow the installer to put in the staples at the exact right place during installation. It's flexible to their application. This allows them to hide the connection on the backside of the railing with the minimum number of tools needed. (Beware, they are sharp!)

Do you prefer stitching to staples? If you're crafty, you can do this yourself using an awl, needle, and thread. Our Replacement Stitch Kits include our waxed sailmaker's thread and a blunt needle. (You'll need to make the stitch holes yourself using an awl or other sharp tool.)

As a custom service, we can also hand-stitch two lengths together for you. (We don't recommend more than two: three+ lengths get too unwieldy to install). Note: the stitching may be visible on the top side of the handrail during installation, as it falls where it may during coiling. 

Two leather straps on a work bench being attached with needle and thread, midway through stitching

Managing handrail posts and support hardware

Handrails have vertical supports. One way or another you'll need to wrap around these supports.

Wall support brackets are the most common and the easiest to accommodate, because they have such a small connection point. They are quite unobtrusive. Usually you can simply wrap the leather around the bracket connection. Sometimes a slight adjustment to the coil overlap width to dodge the bracket is all that's needed. 

Balusters (vertical supports) and balustrades can sometimes be a little more tricky, and they are unique to each installation. We manage similar scenarios on bicycle handlebars when wrapping around curves and brake hoods.

Most can be flexible wrapped around the baluster, but sometimes you may need to snip a gusset or strategic cut-out with sharp scissors. 

How many kits do you need?

We also published a calculator to help you figure out how many kits you'd need based on what diameter handrail and what length:
Leather Wrap Length Estimator Tool >>>

More customization: alternate widths and custom sizing

Do you have an extra-wide handrail and are looking for a custom width, such as a strap up to 2" wide instead of 1.25"? Or a special project to discuss? Ask us about custom work

More leather wrap styles and braids

Looking for a different wrap than a coil, such as a braid? We chose the coil for the Oswego Wrap as the simplest and most flexible installation method.

But we make other leather wrap styles (originally designed for bicycle handlebars, a much more complex shape) that can be also used on a bannister or handrail. We can make these custom for your project, or crafty folks can DIY it. Here is a blog post detailing the different styles of wraps with the DIYer in mind:
DIY Leather Wraps >>>

 

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