Barrett Alley, a Dallasite who spent three years perfecting his line of astonishingly thin but resilient leather wallets, took another year to design his just-released Smuggler's Belt, which contains a hidden pocket for stashing cash made from clandestine shipments of opium. Alley says each belt requires three different thicknesses of leather, and takes a skilled craftsmen three hours to make, a process that looks a little like this:
But that's not all: each iron buckle is forged by a blacksmith "stuck in 1776", meaning he uses period-faithful production methods, and took Alley so long to find that he won't reveal where the guy's located for fear that everybody will be after his majestically outmoded services.
That doesn't mean you don't get to see pictures of molten metal, however, because somewhat less secretively, Alley has also created the Magic Braid Belt, which is cut & woven from a single piece of leather using a technique that apparently goes back to the conquistadors:
Each of these buckles is sand-cast into existence by a brass foundry in Dallas. This is how that works:
Also, this happens, because you can't sand-cast without sand:
Neither belt is cheap, but if you want an accessory whose back-story involves the Revolutionary Era or Spanish explorers & burning sand, you might want to pull out your incredibly thin leather wallet.
Published: February 8, 2013 at 3:30pm EST
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