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Product Tips: Angelus Leather Paint

Angelus Leather Paint: Product Overview

Although most people are familiar with fabric paints, leather paint is growing in popularity. What is leather paint? What can it be used for? What are the requirements for working with this art medium? In this post I will give a brief overview to answer these questions, as well as showcase a few projects I have made using Angelus paints.  

What is Angelus Leather Paint and what can it be used for?
Angelus Leather paint is a specialty paint designed to work on leather, fabric, vinyl and many other surfaces, if prepared properly. The paint is thick and mimics acrylic in most cases, but can be thinned using a thinning medium by Angelus. The paint layers well, however, be weary of how many layers you add on fabric surfaces. Too many layers of paint will create a hardened shell on fabrics which can be uncomfortable or crack with time if not prepared properly.

This brand of paint is often used in customizing shoes and other items of clothing. The Angelus official website has many videos demonstrating the ways in which these paints can be used. In my personal experience I’ve used the paints on fabric, fake leather, suede leather and regular leather. The colors are vibrant and rarely need a second coat. When layering, make sure that the paint underneath is dry. If the layer is not dry, you risk blending the colors you want to layer. Angelus paints can be used to blend with beautiful results, however, the paint will dry more quickly on hot days. These paints are perfect to use for a variety of styles.

What are the requirements for working with this art medium?

Depending on the projects and surfaces you are working on, you will need to purchase Angelus leather deglazier, sealant or fabric medium. You can also purchase Angelus acrylic finisher to give your paints a glossy or mat finish. You will need soft paintbrushes with secure bristles to work with the paint. If you use textured brushes, the texture will remain once the paint dries. I would recommend brushes with secure bristles so that they will not fall out and get stuck in the paint. I also highly recommend using dotting tools if you are planning on working on smoother surfaces or if you want very precise lines and dots in your artwork. When planning your project, do some extra research to make sure that you purchase all the materials you need. If you are new to Angelus leather paint, considered buying a few basic colors to test first. Consider starting out with leather deglazier, the primary colors and a small set of soft brushes. Try starting with a small, simplified project. That way you learn about the medium from first hand experience. This is especially important if you are working towards painting on expensive leather products, as a mistake may end up being very costly.

Project Showcase

My first project with these paints was the cover of a Filofax as a birthday gift for a friend. These Filofax journals are ideal for notes, studying and journaling, as they are refillable and made to last. For this project I decided to work in a more detailed style. Armed with a reference picture of a particular rich and grand dragon from the Hobbit, I began to sketch out the basis of the dragon eye. As usual, my creativity did lead me to change the colors of the dragon, as well as adding and subtracting details. For this style I required layering and blending, as well as a good sketch to build off. I started by drawing the eye and scales with charcoal pencil. This worked really well, as I could erase if I needed to. The one thing to keep in mind when using charcoal or pastel is that it tends to smudge. Thus, during the sketching process, the project should ideally be kept out of reach from prying hands (and cats). The paint layers over the charcoal, and in my experience is opaque enough not to tint, even when working with the very light greens.

I was able to easily blend, shade and layer the scales. The paint dries fairly quickly (like acrylic), which is very helpful when you are doing many layers. To cover the journal, one layer of paint was opaque enough, so although I did do second coats in a few places, they were rarely required. It was a fun experience, and I was able to finish the project much faster than expected. Unfortunately that meant waiting in suspense until I am able to present my friend with the birthday gift…

The project took a total of 28 hours. For brushes I used a Pro-Art Multi Use Brush Set of 10. I used Black, White, Neon Popsicle Green, Green and Blue Angelus Leather paint.

As it has been nearly six months since I completed this project, I am able to evaluate that the paint has not chipped nor been scratched or damaged in use. The dragon to whom this eye belongs must be rather intelligent, it’s pages steadily being filled with mathematical formulas and other important studying subjects.

The completed project

So far, I’ve worked on many commission items, as well as some products that are still available for purchase. At the time of posting this, I have one Filofax journal available, as well as two genuine leather shoes. For more details on the available products, feel free to send us an email. Most of the products showcased in this blog have already been sold or were commissioned for specific people.