View Full Version : leather for desktop

24th December 2013, 02:22 PM
I know its been asked before... but my search didn't turn up an answer. :(

I want to find a source for both leather and gold leaf for gilding for a writing desk... I'd prefer a shop front in Sydney so I can see and touch/smell.

Can anyone assist?

Big Shed
24th December 2013, 02:34 PM
Not Sydney but they may be worth contacting for a local NSW source?

Desk Leather Inlays (http://www.bookbinding.com.au/deskleatherinlay.html)

25th December 2013, 10:15 PM
Do a search on "replacing leathers" exelent article by Woodwood

27th December 2013, 01:54 PM
Thanks fellows.

30th December 2013, 08:25 AM
I get my leather from NSW Leather (http://www.leatherco.com.au) in Alexandria. They have a huge range and are pretty helpful. They may also be able to point you in the direction of gilding supplies, or you can get kit from art suppliers like Riot or Eckersleys.

30th December 2013, 10:14 AM
Thank you Alex... Alexandria is on the way to the Mother-in-Laws so not only will I get to look/touch/smell, but it won't require a trek across Sydney's fantastic traffic network. !:2tsup:

30th December 2013, 09:04 PM
You could also try Birdsall Leather and Craft at Botany. Australian Kangaroo Leather Lacing Tools Accessories - Birdsall Leather (http://birdsall-leather.com.au/home.php)


17th February 2016, 06:52 PM
Wondering if it's ok to resurrect this thread with a bit of a diversion? Mine is not a leather top unfortunately - am not up with the finer materials yet with the current level of ex/unexperience. I have a large office desk with a vinyl/leatherette top which needs to be replaced as it was peeling off at the edges and had been stuck on with contact adhesive. Already went ahead and got the panel of vinyl, without knowing how to procede from there. Getting the old panel off was a real chore, leaving it out to heat in the sun, leaving weights on the loose end and basically peeling it all off slowly.
This left a coating of contact on the plywood underneath and it was already in a poor condition with some water damage flaking around the edges.
Never thought to look in the upholstery threads before, but this seems to be the place.
Would anyone be able to advise how to procede from here?
How to get the contact off without having to resort to turps?
How to level out the divots in the ply to give a flat surface throughout? I read somewhere to plaster it.
What adhesive to use to stick the vinyl to the desk top? Heard varying ideas including flour glue but none seemed convincing
Any guidance on this would be greatly appreciated!

22nd February 2016, 11:31 AM
i'm not an expert on this but a few thoughts for you:

Is the old contact adhesive dry and hard? If so a cabinet or paint scraper might work, possibly with a heat gun as for paint removal.

For levelling dings/divots I suspect that a wood filler would be better than plaster as the latter becomes brittle with age and could crack up/pulverise - revealing the hollow again.

Where the plywood is water damaged or flaking you need to strengthen it - there are some excellent epoxy products for the purpose of treating wood rot - two part A & B, very runny, mix together, paint on and let set. You will have to throw the brushes away afterwards unless you spring for some expensive thinners to clean them - I just use cheapies and throw away. If the grain stands up you can sand it smooth afterwards. It stinks so you need good ventilation and a mask if you sand it.

When a leather top is replaced I have seen that the leather has been sliced/shaved at the edges to make the edge thinner but I do not know whether you could do that with vinyl - or if you need to, it would depend on how thick your vinyl is. The old leatherette fabrics were very thin, often just a proofed thin canvas. I have also seen where the recess for the fabric/leather has been cut deeper around the circumference so the fabric/leather sits down at the edge.

Traditionally leather tops were glued on with hide glue, but later fabrics were usually put down with contact adhesive. If you get a good contact adhesive a liquid or - even a spray can (the gels may be a bit thick?), and an even coat then you should get good adhesion if you let the contact get touch dry on both surfaces first. Lay a series of strips of wood/lathes over the dry contact surface on the desk. That keeps the fabric off the surface while you position it exactly. After you line up the long edge press the fabric down to the surface and make sure it is well attached. Then remove the strips/lathes one by one and roll the fabric down with a hard rubber or metal roller as you go.

Good luck.