Keychains Galore Part 2: Marbling Leather

I had saved a few additional keychains for myself to experiment with marbling using nail polish. Tutorials for this technique have been popping up in my Pinterest feed and I’d used the technique before in a home manicure, but hadn’t gotten around to trying the technique on other materials yet. Leather keychains sounded like a good place to start. I used two colors, black and a pearly sea foam green. Wasn’t sure how the leather would hold up to immersion in the water and polish, so I masked the raw side on a few and left a few unmasked just to see. The nail polish dries quickly, so water damage really wasn’t that big of a concern. The masked leather maintained its soft and pliable qualities, while the unmasked pieces ended up crusty and stiff. Not sure of it’s longevity yet, but for now, it’s looking pretty good. Hoping to try it out on some clutches and wallets next!

There’s a great tutorial on the technique on Brit + Co. Also, I highly recommend wearing rubber gloves if you’d prefer to not have an unexpected manicure. :slight_smile:


Great technique! What did you use to mask the raw sides?


Could you just neats-foot or sno-seal the living daylights out of the masked side? Also, what happens if you laser the marbled parts?

This looks so cool!

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Very nice!
I love the technique of oil on water. Blow on it to “herd” the oil lines into an inspiring shape - and dip!

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Btw, this is also how all those marbled endpapers in old books came about. (Different materials, but essentially the same process.)


my favorite hydrography is the camouflage for helmets and other items.


Well sure but what about this?


I could swear I posted somethin like these back in December?? Last year but after 15 min of searching I couldn’t find any trace.


You did - I remember. Still amazing.


Glad to know I’m not imagining memories now. :stuck_out_tongue:

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Shook me to my core when I realized - memory is malleable.
When you have a memory of an event or sequence of events, that is “truth” to you because of your recollection, and someone who recalls it differently has their own version of the “truth”… Which is wrong! :thinking:

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@wesleyjames you did back in January. I was lazy and posted something new rather than linking to previous topic.

And @jkopel you were right there then. The computational method is wild.


Totally forgot I posted that, and in essentially the same context. :flushed:
Pavlovian training works even when short term memory is gone!


Attempted the marbling technique @Luz shared a link to…pretty awesome stuff! (Though I recommend doing it outside…didn’t think of that until I was halfway into it lol). I marbled a cheap wooden box I found at Joann Fabrics using gold, white, and mint nail polish. My technique was definitely a little shaky, though the overall result was pretty neat for a first try! Really makes me want to get more into hydrographic printing.

@jkopel, that video is insane! Just thinking about all the work that probably went into getting the virtual simulation to work that well gives me a headache haha.


I don’t think I have posted this one before.
It’s one of my favorites.
The key takeaway for me was the rakes they used to put the color on the water, and the simple tools that generate a myriad of complex patterns.


Thanks for posting this – very cool indeed. I have to admit, though, that I cringed when they dipped that old book in a tub of water (at about the 9:55 mark). Blasphemy! :open_mouth:

Holy crap, that was beautiful work!! I kind of want to drop everything and become a marbler now. 100% agree with you- the simplicity of the tools and the complexity of the designs make the work even more amazing in my opinion.


Wow. That is fascinating and incredibly cool to just watch.