Make it as neck knife sheath.
Make it as neck knife sheath.
+1 on the neck knife.
Give it a deer head camo pattern with little deer heads all over it.
I agree with the dear head camo idea.
It isn't what the problems are - it is what you do with them - and how you market them.
If deer head camo is your best work (?) and you would be very proud of it, then go ahead, but I would encourage you to give that one a nice burial in the bottom of the trash and start over. Make something you would be proud of and not something that had too be "fixed". Teach yourself to never accept less than perfect (or as close to perfect as you are capable). I bet that you have already learned from this and you will double check before striking a stamp in the future.
I always waffle on this one. I remember that the thing I made a mistake on was once living. I hate to 'waste' that once living thing.
I would make this as a sheath to sell to someone who might like it in the future - and remake the commissioned piece.
Again - I am never sure what to do.
Tal, take this in the spirit I intend it as it is only my personal opinion and standard.
I think a maker's reputation starts growing when he cuts out that first sheath, and it grows in the direction that he guides it through personal criticism and standards. I have any where from 10 to 15 finished sheaths, at any given time, in a brief case that I haul around to shows, hammer ins, etc. Each of these sheaths did not meet my personal standard for one reason or another. Most of the time it's a question of fit, either too loose or too tight. If anyone other than myself can spot the error, it is never sold. In the case of fit, there will ALWAYS be a knife somewhere that fits ANY sheath, so I allow the prospective customer to test fit his knife and if it fits to HIS standards then I will accept 50% of the sale price or LESS only after I have explained it did not meet my standards. Many times I am asked "well where is the problem, show me". I never do show them, but I can still see it plain as day and after all, I did offer full disclosure that there was a problem and reduced the price dramatically. I also give many of these sheaths away to novice makers for them to study if they so choose. So all in all I feel I have overcome the "waste" aspect, and maybe done a little bit of good in the process.
I have always and will always encourage makers, both new and experienced to never fall into the "good enough" trap. "Good Enough" to me is synonymous with perfect (or as close as you are capable). I'm still looking for my first "Perfect" sheath, by the way.
Now you know why when I critique some one's work I stress never selling anything that does not represent their best at that time. I'm sure they are pretty much like all of us........ Their next sheath will be their best, and on and on.
I agree totally with the spirit of your post. I like your idea of selling work not up to par for 50%. That seems to work toward a set of standards that I am happy with as well as not 'wasting' any material.
I like how you stated 'the best at that time'. Perfect wording.
Ha! I can only laugh with you. I have a whole trash bag full of my mistakes. Name a possible mistake, and I'll bet I can pull proof that I made it out of my bag!
A common mistake that people make when trying to design something completely foolproof is to underestimate the ingenuity of complete fools.”
― Douglas Adams, Mostly Harmless
BH # 247 NRA Benefactor Member
Funny how things come up. I was wrestling with this very thing the last few days. I've only made about a dozen sheaths and I made one for a knife I'm giving my Cousin's Son. Well, as it turned out, the fit was pretty tight but manageable. But when using black dye on the outside of the line, some got across the line into the main part. Plus, whenever I finally glued it up, the knife didn't fit down into the sheath as far as I'd like. I like a knife to fit at least half way, but this one only fit about a quarter or less. It held the knife tight, but the knife ended up looking too big for the sheath.
I knew my Cousin's son would be excited about the knife/sheath and would probably never give either a second thought. Even my wife said "Oh, it'll be alright". Last night I set at my workbench looking at this knife/sheath combo for the longest of times and finally grabbed the sheath and stuck it in a "catch all" drawer and started making a new pattern for a sheath. I'm pretty slow plus I used some expensive leather on that sheath, which is why I didn't put it back in the first place. But I knew it would nag me if I had given it to him that way.
Then this morning I log in and see this post...
I keep all my screwed up sheaths as a reminder of what I did wrong. Plus, I think some of them may fit a future knife that I keep for personal use.
I do the same M. I rarely don't use my leather - I find the oddest things to use my small scraps for.
My original intention of this post was to generate a chuckle and poke fun at myself a bit. This certainly wasn't the first mistake I've made (I made a mistake about 25 years ago, but the more I think about it, I don't think that was my fault.) The sheath was already in the scrap box when the first comments started coming in. However, I was intrigued by the "camo" idea. So I retrieved it and added a few more heads. I have showed it to few guys and everyone seems to like it. I like it myself. Whether or not I will let it go with the knife remains to be seen. Perhaps I'll market it as an "upgrade."
Perfection is an elusive concept, but I have seen it. A prematurely retired knifemaker visited me at my request about 2 years ago to help me out. He brought a knife with him. The knife and sheath were absolutely perfect. The guard looked as if it had been milled from the blade stock. It was perfectly ground and had a mirror finish so perfect, it could have been used in a telescope. The sheath was simple, but the fit and feel were perfect. He quit making knives and had to buy it back.
Perfection did him in. He got so good that he could accept nothing less than perfection. He quit. (His wife told me this sad story). I tend to be a perfectionist myself, but I have told myself that I may never get there and will not allow it to "do me in." I will make knives until it is no longer fun or rewarding.
Thanks to all for weighing in.
The mistake is attached.
"I don't play with knives. I play with harmonicas."
I like it!
The intent of "fixing" a muddled sheath is not necessarily for the intended customer. If the customer ordered something specific then yes, start over. But if you can have a use for the upside down sheath then yes! Use it for another project.
Its always been my belief to hold on to slips of the hand, they do come in handy later. The only slip of the hand that I scrap is a missed cut, even then the leather can be used on a smaller project. Dont waste that leather in the scrap bin or the trash can, its too valuable.
When you make a mistake like the upside down stamp, make another sheath for the customer that is perfect, then use the mistake stamped sheath later. Either as a smaller sheath, or like you did, incorporate the design into a bigger scheme. Its really that simple,
Milt, I guess that's why they make Ford, Chevy and Dodge, to satisfy different opinions. Sorry I spoke, particularly if what I said was taken wrong. You clearly did not ask for comments or advise, so in your case, please disregard what I said.
I took no offense whatsoever by your comments. You said what you thought in a very honest, tactful manner. Initially, I did exactly what you suggested as I have done many times before. (You should see by steel cemetery.) I appreciate honest opinions- especially from those who know. I also appreciated the other comments left.
"I don't play with knives. I play with harmonicas."
I saw nothing offensive either, The open discussion and such a wide berth of opinions are why I love this place and this craft so much.
Paul, you are the least offensive person I know. Well aside from that far to nice fellow that goes by the name Sandy, that guy is sickly sweet.
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