Can you believe that summer has come to and end already? Kids and teachers across the country have been heading back to school. My own daughter will start school this week! It’s always a shock to the system when summer end’s and autumn begins.  I’m just a little sad that the season is shifting from bathing suits and sandals to sweaters and scarves.  Lucky for us, good accessories never go out of season.

Ever since the TierraCast folks came for a visit, I have been wanting to play around with their line of leather components and rivetables.  I though that watches would be a great back to school project.  Most teachers frown upon having cells phones in class, even just to check the time.  So, why not whip your student (or hey, yourself!) up a cute watch.  They are so easy to make, you could even have one to match every outfit in your wardrobe!

Leather Strap
Pinch Bail
Watch Face
Leather Clasp

Rotary Leather Punch
Leather Punch
Bench Block
4mm Rivet Setter
6mm Rivet Setter
Eyelet Setter
1) Begin by making the band of the watch. Slide the clasp onto one end of the black leather and fold the end over.  Using the smallest setting on the rotary punch, punch a hole into the leather.  (Image 1)
2) Thread the post of a 6mm rivet through both sections of leather.  Snap the top portion of the rivet into place.  Using the 6mm rivet setter, hammer the rivet into place.  (Images 2-3)
3) Measure the band on your wrist and make a loop on the opposite side.  Punch a hole and secure the rivet into place as in steps 1-2 above. Set aside.  (Image 4)
4) Hold the bail into place at the loop of the watch.  Pinch to secure.  Repeat on the opposite side of the watch face. (Images 5-6)
5) Mark the center point of the leather band (I made a small scratch with a knotting awl) where the watch will lay. (Image 7)
6) Measure a 1.5 inch section of pink leather.  Cut the leather in half lengthwise.  (Image 8)
7) Thread the small length of leather through the bail on the watch.  Punch a hole in the pink leather. (Images 9-10)
8) Place the watch on the center mark of the band.  Using your awl, poke through the hole in the pink leather and mark the black leather beneath it.  Punch a hole in the black leather where the mark is. (Images 11-12)
9) Stack all three pieces of leather onto the post of a 4mm rivet. Snap the top into place. Secure using a 4mm rivet setter and a hammer.  Trim excess pink leather. (Images 13-15)
10) Repeat steps 7-9 above on the opposite side of the watch face.  (Image 16)
11) Measure a 1 inch piece of pink leather and cut in half lengthwise.  (Image 17)
12) Hold into place on the watch band and punch holes into the leather.  Secure into place with a rivet on either side using the steps above.  (Images 18-19)
13) Repeat on the opposite side of the watch band.
I love this project.  There are so many possibilities when it comes to customizing the watch band that its easy to find something to represent your individual style.  With over 40 styles of watch faces, 20 colors of leather straps and countless combinations of the TierraCast components, your student can head back to school in style.  The turquoise and brown banded watch above is quickly becoming a favorite piece of mine to wear!
Pink/Black Watch: Pink watch face, fuchsia leather, black leather, silver pinch bail, gunmetal clasp, 4mm gunmetal rivet, 6mm bright silver rivet.
Copper/Red Watch: Copper heart watch face, red leather, antique copper leather, silver pinch bail, copper clasp, 4mm silver rivet, 6mm silver rivet, 6mm copper rivet, silver beaded bead.
Turquoise/Brown Watch: Two-tone watch face, turquoise leather, cocoa leather, silver pinch bail, gold clasp, 4mm gold rivet, 6mm gold rivet, silver beaded bead.
If inspiration hits and you want to try a little more ambitious project, try turning your basic watch band into a fabulous wrap watch! For the wrap watch above, I used 2 red leather straps and 2 antique copper straps to complete the 24 inch band.  I used rivets and eyelets to piece everything together.  I also used a combination of copper and silver rivets and components to compete this great statement piece.
One of the great things about the TierraCast riveting system is how easy it is to use.  At their make-n-take in August, there were kids as young as 6 sitting down at the work table to participate.  Sure, they needed an extra pair of (adult) hands to get started, but most of the picked it up pretty quickly.  This is a great project to get the kids involved with!  My girl, who is 8, has been begging me to buy her a watch but I think we just might have to sit down and make them together instead! I’ve never been a watch person really, but this watch looks more like a fancy bracelet, and that is something I can get behind!

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