DIY Leather Sheath for a Hatchet

How to make a leather sheath for your hatchet.

The “axe leather sheath” is a DIY project that allows users to make a leather sheath for their hatchet. The project includes instructions on how to create the sheath and also includes pictures of the finished product.

Vintage hatchet with leather sheath illustration.

Note from the editor: This is a guest post by Michael Magnus. 

Building anything from the ground up provides a tremendous sense of accomplishment. Turning a completed creation over in your hands, admiring the workmanship and what you learnt along the way, and remembering those thoughts every time you use it…handmade things have a special vitality to them. One of the reasons leatherworking may be so addicting is because of this.

The hatchet is one of the few instruments that may be used for a variety of macho tasks. So we’re going to make a leather hip sheath/case for your sword today. While there are a variety of ways to customize it, the goal of this guide is to make things as easy and uncomplicated as possible so that even someone who has never worked with raw leather before may succeed. Let’s get started!



  • Leather that has been tanned using vegetables. This project calls for 6-7 ounce vegetable tanned leather, which can be found at your local leather shop or online. A single shoulder piece would be more than enough to produce many of these sheaths, but if you want to save money on your first endeavor, you may make do with a belly or spare piece. (However, you’ll soon discover that fine leather is well worth the money!) For less than $30, you should be able to purchase 4-5 square feet of leather. This simple guide will teach you all you need to know about purchasing leather.
  • Thread is waxed. Depending on the effect you want to create, thread comes in a range of hues. To avoid detracting from the inherent quality of the leather, this craft uses white thread. Waxed thread is more stable, durable, and stronger than standard thread. It also seems to remain in the needle a little longer.
  • Make contact with the cement. Although there are contact cements designed particularly for leather, any contact cement will do for this job. Using contact cement to secure the leather for sewing will make your job much simpler.
  • Rivet. Although just one rivet is required for this project, they are quite useful to have on hand for other leatherworking tasks. You can obtain a huge bunch for a low price, and buying a single rivet would be difficult. In fact, you could conceivably forgo hand-sewing entirely by building this project entirely using rivets. I, on the other hand, appreciate the aesthetic and solidity that stitching provides.


Common Available Tools.

Although it’s best to utilize the correct equipment for the task, many of the leatherworking instruments described in this project may be replaced with more readily accessible ones you already have.

  • Sturdy paper or light cardboard are ideal. For the purpose of producing a pattern.
  • Pencil. For the purpose of marking.
  • Scissors or sheers are the tools of choice. You’ll need this to cut out your design.
  • Scratch awl, scratch awl, scratch awl, scratch a In order to make a mark on your leather, you’ll need this tool.
  • Knife for everyday use. To help you cut your leather. Make sure you’re using a new blade.
  • Mallet. Important: Do not smash metal tools with a metal hammer. It has the ability to mushroom the tool’s tip and eject metal shrapnel. It’s best to use a polymer or leather mallet/maul. Hard rubber or wood may also be used, although they are less effective.
  • Punch with a drive or a rotary punch. To make holes in leather, use this tool.
  • Beveler for safety. For securely thinning leather at junctures.
  • Chisel for stitching. Get a tool with four prongs and 1/8′′ (3mm) spacing.
  • Needles for sewing. For the purpose of stitching.
  • Pliers. To keep your fingertips safe.
  • Rivet setter is a tool that is used to make rivets. Set rivets using this tool.
  • Anvil. Set rivets using this tool.
  • Dividers between the wings. To draw a straight line around a curve.

The Pattern Making Process

Before cutting into the leather, you must first make a pattern on thick paper or cardboard. You’ll want to adapt the pattern for your hatchet or axe since most hatchets and axes differ somewhat in design.


Axe with its Paper Pattern.

To begin, trace the hatchet head form on one side, leaving a space where the handle should be. Roll it on its back to indicate a distance equal to the width of the hatchet’s butt, plus a half-inch, and then trace the other side of the hatchet, duplicating the first. This will give the sheath its first form.

Now that you’ve got the basic form, you’ll need to add extra room all the way around to enable you to sew the sheath together. On one side of your design, draw a 1/4′′ border beyond where you drew the blade. Because it will be folded to ensure that the two sides meet up flush, you will only need to conduct this operation on one side.

Axe Pattern Drawn on Paper.

A little tab for the butt of the axe to rest on will be required in addition to covering the blade to guarantee that the hatchet does not slip out of your sheath. Add a tiny rectangle to the underside of the blade, at the butt edge of the border, about the width and length of the blade’s butt, as seen above.

Paper Piece In Axe Shape with Secior.

Once you’ve completed the design for one half of the ax, flip it over and trace along the edge to make two matching halves, matching up your original blade marks to guarantee proper measurement. Cut out the design once they have been indicated.

Leather Preparation

Axe Paper Template on Leather.

Lightly scratch the pattern outline into the leather with an awl or anything with a pointed tip to mark it for cutting. Mark beyond the pattern (up into it) on the support tabs till just beneath where the hatchet’s butt will land.

Tip: Avoid using a pen or marker for this stage, since the ink might seep through the leather and leave lasting stains.

Axe Shape Leather piece. Cut out the design with a sharp utility knife or leather shears. You’ll also want to cut through the leather where your tabs have been drawn out.

Use a little round leather punch on the inner end of the flap lines before cutting if you have one. Not only will you get a cleaner cut, but rounder junctures will also be less prone to rip.

Leather Skiving.

Skiving leather is a procedure in which the thickness of the leather is reduced, frequently at an angle, in order to minimize the thickness for stitching and create a smoother edge. Down the blade edge, as well as a few inches along the bottom of the sheath where it will be sewed together, reduce the leather to about half its thickness. When skiving leather, you’ll have a lot more success if you run the blade at a 45-degree angle instead than perpendicular.

Including a Belt Loop

Preparing Leather for Swing.

Cut a 23.5′′ rectangle piece of leather from a scrap to prepare for the belt loop.

Tip: Before you connect the belt loop, decide which side you’d want to wear it on. The blade should preferably be facing backwards.


Arrange the rectangle on the leather as shown above to connect the loop to the sheath. The smooth side of the leather on the sheath piece should face up, while the rough side of the leather on the loop should face up. Align the bottom edge of the rectangle to lay about half an inch below the top of the sheath, with the side edge of the rectangle about aligned with the opposite side of the tab (again, as shown above).

A chisel – the four-pronged fork-looking instrument in the picture — will be used to make the holes for hand stitching. Apply a thin line of contact cement around the edge of where both parts will be joined to ensure that the leather does not slip when punching.

Apply the contact cement to each parts individually for optimal results, letting it to cure for a few minutes until sticky rather than moist. For a secure bond, join the two sections at the contact cement junction.

Your leather is now ready for hole punching. Start punching holes with your chisel about an eighth of an inch from the edge on both sides (as shown above). To ensure consistent spacing, overlap the previous hole and create clusters of three holes at a time all the way across the bottom of the rectangular piece.

Hand stitching leather requires around 3.5-4X the length of the run of thread.

Leather Sewing.

We’re going to utilize a saddle stitch for this project, which provides a much stronger suture than a sewing machine’s lock-stitch. Attach a needle to each side of the thread, leaving a tail of approximately two inches. Place one needle into one of the end holes and adjust the thread so that it is evenly distributed on both sides.

Then, using each needle, stitch back and forth across each side, through each hole, making a figure eight pattern. Watch the video below for a visual representation of this:


Sew back two holes on each side after sewing through the final hole on each side to secure the stitch. Pull each thread through the rear side of your product and cut it flush.

Using Plier in leather stitching for tight fit.

Note that if you repeat the stitch a second time, it may be a tight fit. Pliers might be useful for gaining leverage.

Unfinished Leather Axe Pouch.

Fold the leather flap over again, leaving about a half-inch of space at the bottom. Apply a small line of contact cement where the two pieces meet to keep the leather in place, then punch your holes, saddle stitch, and sew back two holes, cutting the thread in the back.

Installing a Rivet

Punching Hole in Leather.

The seat on which the butt of the axe will sit will be the next step. To do so, punch one hole into each of the tabs using a 1/8′′ drive punch, about 1/4′′ from the outer edge. The two tabs will be able to be riveted together as a result of this.


A rivet is a small metal pin that is used to connect two pieces of leather. It features a domed cover, which the pin expands into when hit, securing it in place.

Leather Rivet Setting.

Push the pin through the overlapping holes from the rough side of the leather, overlapping the pieces of leather, so that the domed cap may be placed from the outside. To fix the rivet, position the flat side of the hardware on a firm surface, such as a tiny anvil, and then strike a domed rivet setter with a mallet to secure the rivet.

Putting the Sheath Together

Leather Wing Divider.

It will be easier to sew the exterior of your sheath if you first scribe a mark 1/8′′ from the edge. This process may be completed quickly with a tool like the wing dividers shown above. Mark the hatchet’s blade end as well as a few inches down the bottom.

For weight reasons, many hatchet handles are broader at the bottom than at the top. Make sure you allow enough of space for the bottom of the handle to pass through the gap when drawing your stitching line for the bottom.

Leather Hand Sewing.

Use contact cement around the borders that you are fixing to keep it in place for punching, using the same saddle stitch process as previously. Begin punching 1/8′′ from the edge on both sides at the intersecting corner and work your way up the blade end of the sheath, then the underside of the blade.

Begin stitching from the top corner of the hatchet blade, working around the angle, down the bottom few inches, and then back two holes to secure the stitch.

Your belt hatchet cover will now be complete.

Oiled and Finished leather axe pouch.

You may treat the leather with oil, but keep in mind that it will darken it. Apply in multiple thin, even coats to prevent over-oiling your leather.

You may treat the leather with oil, but keep in mind that it will darken it. Apply in multiple thin, even coats to prevent over-oiling your leather.

Michael Magnus is a North Texas-based digital advertising educator, consultant, and freelancer. Magnus promotes the art of leatherworking as a recreational leathercraft historian and content developer with the Elktracks Studio Foundation when he is not teaching or spending time with his family.



Watch This Video-

A good DIY Leather Sheath for a Hatchet is an essential item in any survival kit. The “leather hatchet sheath kit” is a great option because it includes everything you need to make your own sheath.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do you make a leather hatchet sheath?

A: Im sorry, but this is an intellectual question that requires a deeper understanding of the materials and techniques involved in making leather sheaths. Please try to ask your question using more specific terms if possible.

How do I make an AXE sheath?

A: To make an axe sheath, you need a leather crafting table. This item cannot be found in Creative mode, and must be crafted from raw materials. You can get these items by buying them from traders on the Grand Exchange with coins or through trading for one with another player. Once you have this item in your inventory, place it down where the new handle will go (the center of the blade). Then right-click to attach it to that spot!

How do you make a PVC AXE sheath?

A: To make a PVC AXE sheath, you will need to get some PVC pipe and then use the following supplies.

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