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The University Star




The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

The Student News Site of Texas State University

The University Star

Self-taught student creates handcrafted leather products

Self-taught leather crafter Trevor Weinaug, a business marketing senior, stands next to a Cobra Class 26 sewing machine inside his workspace. (Photo courtesy Trevor Weinaug)

Self-taught leather crafter Trevor Weinaug, a business marketing senior, stands next to a Cobra Class 26 sewing machine inside his workspace. (Photo courtesy Trevor Weinaug)

Trevor Weinaug was shopping around for a leather belt in 2016 when he began to realize how pricey they could be. Instead of making an expensive decision he would have later regretted, his passion for trying new things motivated him to watch tutorials online and figure out how to create his own.
“I was a stick figure kind of person when I started out,” Weinaug said.
The project eventually led Weinaug, a business marketing senior, to develop a hobby that would soon turn into his own business. Whether it’s handmade suspenders, sandals, earrings, wallets, graduation caps or knife sheaths, Weinaug Handcrafted Leather prides itself on creating pieces that allow customers to express their unique selves.
Weinaug has always been fascinated with taking things apart and figuring out how they work, thus starting an endeavor from scratch felt natural to him. The artistic element of the craft, however, was completely foreign to him.
“I would sit there every night and had to force myself to draw,” Weinaug said. “[Now] I see myself grow [with] every project that I do.”
The philosophy of repetition as a means of improvement is echoed by Weinaug’s friend and fellow leather smith, Jesse Mohon.
The two met through mutual friends at a concert in 2018 and bonded over their shared interest in leatherwork. From there, they started hanging out at Mohon’s shop, where Mohon watched Weinaug’s artistic evolution unfold before his eyes.
“He’s been doing really, really good, and he’s starting to get his own patterns down, and he’s starting to draw his own stuff out,” Mohon said. “It’s looking like something that’s his. His own style is developing, and that’s nice to watch. It’s been great to watch Trevor get better.”
Mohon is not the only one to take notice of Weinaug. Farm and ranch realtor Weston Jenkins has been a major fan and supporter of Weinaug’s work since Weinaug reached out and asked him if he could make a customized hat for one of the participants in Jenkins’ nonprofit Disabled Outdoorsmen, a hunting program for people with disabilities.
Jenkins was blown away by the finished product and has been promoting Weinaug far and wide on social media ever since.
“I like that [his work is] completely handmade; I like how he’s a small business and really takes pride in his work,” Jenkins said. “I also like his craftsmanship and his customization, how he can really put anything on there. He puts a lot of time and effort into his projects, and he’s really passionate about it, too.”
This passion is fueling Weinaug’s plans for the future. Once he graduates in December, Weinaug plans to dedicate himself to his leather shop full-time. He is currently in the process of converting an old house on his grandparents’ ranch into his own studio.
Weinaug has also been considering incorporating an artificial intelligence machine into his work to make more products at once, something he promises no other leathercrafter is thinking about right now. This capacity for imagination and innovation is what has gotten him so hooked on the trade.
“I like the endless possibilities; I can literally put anything on there,” Weinaug said. “I’m not really limited. As long as it fits on it, I can make it happen.”
To see Weinaug’s work or place a custom order, visit him on Instagram, Twitter or Facebook.

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  • Self-taught leather crafter Trevor Weinaug, a business marketing senior, draws a design onto a piece of leather. Weinaug has been working on his craft since 2016 and designs a variety of products such as suspenders, sandals, earrings, wallets, graduation caps and knife sheaths.

  • A handcrafted leather wallet by Trevor Weinaug.

    By Photo courtesy of Trevor Weinaug
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