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How to Write on Leather

You've probably heard of write on leather pens, but do you know what their purpose is or how to use one? This guide explains what leather pens are used for and how to utilize them in marking leather and hides.

The Purpose of Write on Leather Pens

The purpose of leather pens or markers is to help leather manufacturers keep more cloth intact by marking off specific areas of leather that need to be fixed or removed. This helps the manufacturer prevent cutting too much and wasting the valuable product. Using leather pens instead of marking tape, you can draw any shape you want - and in any size - around the flaw in the leather.

How to Use a Leather Pen

Learning how to properly use a leather marker will help you make the most out of your hide and your marker purchase.

  1. Select a colour. Hides come in many different colors, which means that sooner or later, you'll come across a hide that doesn't display a marker color very well. Brands like LeatherPen Precision Marker offer four different colors - blue, brown, green and white - that you can choose from, depending on the color of the hide. Select green or brown for lighter hides, and choose blue or white for darker leather.
  2. Locate the flaw in the material. Knowing how big of an area you need to draw around is helpful before starting to draw with write on leather pens.
  3. Prime the tip. The ink probably won't flow the minute you snap the cap off and start writing. Press the ink nib firmly onto a remnant of leather to prime it, tapping it sharply on top of a hard surface if necessary. It may take several seconds before the pen is ready to use if this is your first use. Future uses will take less time to prime.
  4. Pull the pen in the direction you want it to go. You need to maintain firm pressure while drawing in order to yield a bold line.
  5. Let the ink dry. It will take at least a minute for the ink to dry once it has transferred onto the material.
  6. Clean off with a cloth. Once you're finished using the marker and you have no more need for the ink on the hide, clean it off with a dry cloth.

Write on leather pens work on many types of leather, but you should refrain from using it on suede or aniline.