The overnight bag of 1,000+ stitching holes

It’s just incredible! Maybe someday for me…hopefully.


Amazing piece. Inspired by your last leather work I tried just a drink bottle holder and ended up having to punch holes by hand after. Is there a standard diameter hole and distance from the edge and next hole that you use?


Is that so you don’t have the exposed cut edge? The panel would have to be cut larger, no?


Such a wonderful bag! I love the style, and your stitching is amazing. Did you lug a stitching pony with you?


The glowforge store doesn’t provide weight in the descriptions like most leather descriptions. So I am guessing you used thick leather. About $150 of leather?


I’m fiddling with what’s optimal but I can show you what I do (fair warning, I’m one of those pesky Illustrator people who has never managed to master Inkscape.)

Step 1: Create a circle somewhere between .06 and .07 inches in diameter. (This really depends on your needle more than anything. Thinner needle, smaller hole is okay.)

Step 2: Go to Brushes > New Brush > Pattern Brush and set your spacing to 200%

Step 3: I build most things that need stitching holes out of segments so I can grab a segment and move it a fixed distance before applying the brush. (Offset path is also a handy way of doing things for some shapes and the principle is the same.)

So, Object > Transform > Move, just use the copy button. I’ve found that between .1 and .2 inches from the material edge works for most of the things I’m doing. More load bearing / structural = further from the edge. Decorative stitching or things like bracelets can be closer to the edge.
Step 4: Apply the brush to your new line.

Step 5 (Optional): Object > Path > Outline Stroke. Doing that will give you a group of individual circles that can be edited. Sometimes I need to delete a single hole at the top or bottom of a row to prevent collision / overlap with an intersecting row of stitches, sometimes the brush goes wonky around corners… it’s just handy sometimes.

I’m a long way from an expert with this stuff so don’t take any of the above as gospel or best practice… but so far, trial and error, it’s been working for me.

Also, by keeping the brush defined as black, when I build my cut lines in any other color (I could default to blue just as easily as I did to red but somehow red just makes sense for me), the stitching holes automatically load as the first step to print which is super handy.


Yes, and in this case, the panel was cut larger. The distance from the stitching hole to the material edge was the same on the end panel as it was on the body of the bag which worked fine everywhere but the corners. In hindsight, flipping it the other way, I wouldn’t have to worry about things being as ‘perfect’ in the structure of those corners.

Nope. It would have been super handy, but I don’t actually have a stitching pony and the ones in the office are small enough that for anything much larger than a wallet, I don’t know that they’d help much.

About that, yes. The first three pages of the design are highly optimized and barely fit in the printable area without needing to use passthrough. The last two pages are a little less optimized. I’ve got some bracelet designs and a few other things that print fairly well even in the narrow edge that’s left at the top of the sheet as sort of a ‘how do I recoup some of the material cost of this massive thing’ so I don’t tend to think of the material cost of the project as being 100% of 5 sheets, but it’s close.


Beautiful bag, beautiful write-up!


GTFO. This is the exact info I need. Perfect. I have been putting holes down on a line, then distributing them via the align menu. This is waaaaaay better. Squeeeee!


You do such incredible work. But my question is can this be accomplished in Affinity Design? Between our Pfaff and Singer we can sew just about anything but hand stitching gives some items like this much more of a different look. And I have not figured out how to do this in AD. Thanks for sharing your beautiful work!


Unfortunately, I don’t have a copy of Affinity to test with. @Jules or one of the other amazingly talented wizards of design software here may be able to say though.

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Oooh! Not me unfortunately, I’m an Illustrator geek too. (I only very recently acquired AD, so I’m not up to speed on it yet.) :confused:

I’ll go poke around a bit, but it’s fairly new software…they might not have documentation on it yet.


Thanks for chiming in Jules.
Jae thanks for the reply.

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Hah! My Google-fu is strong! Try this link:



Super post. The details and breakdown of the workflow are essential to inspiring me to do projects that are complicated like this. I have not touched leather since my pre-release days but have all the stitching tools and rivet tools. Excellent.


LOL, now I shall go look for an inkscape version :slight_smile:


Gorgeous! I definitely could have used a project like that when I traveled a lot for work.


Wow, really impressive! Well done!


The brush or spray extension works differently in Inkscape. You can use two extensions. One is to convert dashes to line segments. The other is using the extension Pattern along path. The post immediately following this one talks about using the extension pattern along path.

Make your stitch path. Then make your circle for a cutout and convert it to a path. Put it at the start of where you want the stitches to go along.

Select the hole and then the path. Then choose Extensions > Generate from Path > Pattern along path. Set the parameters for the pattern. Choose repeated and snake.

Then choose the space between copies and the offsets. It is set in pixels per inch, with 96 pixels equaling an inch. Unfortunately, the dialog box rounds up and down to tenths so you can’t get exact scaling in an inch, which would be 5.625 pixels for an 1/8 of an inch. But you can adjust the spacing to hit the corners as you wish.

And here is one with a .065" hole spaced 5 pixels. You can break apart the resulting compound path and edit individual holes.


Your bag looks great. Thanks for the details of how you made it and what you learned. I feel so inspired!:star_struck: