Leathercrafter Linda Brown.

Linda is all tied up in knots

Knotty leathercrafter Linda Brown

  • Jul. 27, 2011 3:00 p.m.

Linda Brown may own one of the few business in the country that relies almost solely on kangaroos.

From her home in Sooke, Brown runs Knotty Linda leathercrafting.

“I specialize in fine braiding and fancy knotting of kangaroo and English bridle leathers,” she said.

Brown uses mostly kangaroo leather because of its unique physical properties.

“In a lot of the work to make a braid, you have to pull really tight on it. And if you pull that tight on cow leather with it that thin to make those decorative knots and braids, it will break.”

Several rooms in her home have been dedicated to the construction and storage of her creations: hundreds of colourful bracelets were displayed neatly on racks near the kitchen,  and dozens of what looked like belts hung from the ceiling in a converted bedroom — but they weren’t designed for humans.

“About a year ago I changed the focus of my business to dog leads and collars,” said Brown.

Making them from English bridle leather, which is derived from cow hide and is very strong and water resistant, it gets its name from from being commonly used to construct bridles for horses.

Designs range from supple brown leads with gold buckles to jet black collars with polished studs, costing anywhere from around $30 to $60.

“I can’t help but make bling, because people want it,” she said.

Brown didn’t always focus on canines — initially, her products were very much people-focused.

“When I first started off my business, I wanted to make whips and floggers. And the reason for that is a good whip handle or flogger handle can really show off my talent as a braider and knotter.”

While it fulfilled her creative needs, she said there wasn’t a lucrative market for her work.

“A lot of people who want those kinds of instruments are not interested in a $300 work of art, a $20 sting will do the trick.”

She still makes custom orders here and there, but other items have unexpectedly been far more popular —  like her zipper pulls.

“A little boy came up to my booth with a toonie in his hand wanting to buy something, but $30 is about the cheapest thing in my booth. So I went home trying to figure out what I can do, and I started to make zipper pulls out of cord.”

What was meant to be a trinket for kids has garnered quite a following — Brown now makes fancier versions with kangaroo leather for adults, as well as sport-themed pulls complete with logos for teams. She even provides members of the Sooke business community, like Western Foods and Sooke Harbour House, with customized zipper pulls to hand out to clients and employees.

You can find more of Knotty Linda’s products at www.knottyl inda.com.

Just Posted

Man hospitalized after early morning Sooke Road crash

Police say injuries are non life-threatening

Premier John Horgan announces improvements to Highway 14

Construction on the $10 million project is set to begin immediately

LETTERS: Sooke preschool celebrates 30th anniversary

Kingfisher Preschool to hold anniversary event May 26

Strike could start Monday for handyDart

BC Transit warns users to find alternate transportation

WATCH: Giant waves smash Ucluelet’s Amphitrite Point

Folks made their way to Ucluelet’s Amphitrite Point Lighthouse on Thursday, Jan.… Continue reading

Ice-cream-eating bear draws controversy

An Alberta Wildlife Park posted a video this week of one of their bears going through a Dairy Queen drive-through

LETTER: The sewage spiral continues in Greater Victoria

My left brain has been trying to digest the news and comments… Continue reading

Fernie, RCMP go to court over city log books in fatal ammonia leak probe

Log books center stage in clashing of investigations between the city and RCMP

Renowned Comox Valley sasquatch researcher passes away

A renowned biologist and leading Canadian sasquatch researcher who called the Comox… Continue reading

B.C.’s biggest pot plant planned for Oliver

Co-founder Tony Holler said the 700,000 sq. ft. facility would produce 100,000 kg of pot per year

Train derails in Northwest B.C.

CN reports no injuries or dangerous goods involved after coal train derailment.

Double-doubles and demonstrations: Employees rally outside Tim Hortons

Protests held in response to Ontario franchise owners cutting employee benefits and breaks

Las Vegas shooter acted alone, exact motive still undetermined: Sheriff

Stephen Paddock was behind the gunfire that killed 58 people including two Canadians

Most Read