Does anyone here have any experience with sewing leather?
I’m about to sew a leather jacket with a pattern I’ve used a couple of times before, so I know the pattern well, and I know the fit etc will work, but one of the things that concerns me is easing in the set-in sleeve. Does leather ease well? I have sewn leather before, in fact, one of the very first garments I made was a red suede jacket using an old favourite jacket that I took apart to use as a pattern. Fools rush in but the jacket turned out great and I wore it for many years. Now that I know a lot more about sewing, I’m feeling less sure about sewing this leather garment–sometimes ignorance is bliss!
I’ve been looking around online and one of the things mentioned on one site was that you should never use cotton thread because it will rot quickly due to the tannin in the leather. True? If so, what’s the best thread? Polyester? I was considering using an upholstery thread from Guterman, but I can’t remember the content of it. I think it is poly cotton. Another site says that you should never attempt to sew leather with a home machine because the stitches aren’t long enough and the machines aren’t powerful enough to go through the leather. I’ve already purchased the leather and I’ve done some test sewing using the longest stitch and I’m able to get through four layers without trouble and that was with a conventional needle (not a leather needle) so I think I’ll be alright with my home machine. Another of the sites says not to use a leather needle for garments, but to use a regular needle. Also true?
Any thoughts or advice before I dive into this project will be greatly appreciated!